The Syracuse Crunch looked no further than right down the bench for their new head coach.
Rob Zettler was officially named as the head coach of the Crunch on Monday night, after Syracuseâ??s Jon Cooper was pulled up to lead the NHLâ??s Tampa Bay Lightning.
Tampa Bay fired their head coach Guy Boucher on Saturday, giving Cooper the opportunity to coach in the NHL.
They (Tampa Bay organization) have given me the responsibility to coach some of their young prospects and I've got a lot of respect for that and for the job they do and hopefully it'll all work out.
There is a certain amount of comfort level dealing with guys you know and people you know, and if you flip it around I'm sure they feel the same way."
said Zettler, who is in just his first year with the Crunch as an assistant coach.
Zettler takes over the surging Crunch, who leads the AHLâ??s Eastern Conference with 86 points and a league best 39-18-3-5 record thus far this season. Syracuse also leads the league with 218 goals.
The new coach is a former defenseman who played 14 seasons in the NHL with six different teams. After a long playing career, Zettler has spent the past 10 years as an NHL assistant coach in San Jose (2002-2008) and Toronto (2008-2012).
The Syracuse Crunch will get to hit the ice for the first time with Zettler at the helm on Wednesday as the Crunch travels to Rochester to take on the Americans.