RAPID CITY, SD — The hype has been growing for a week since the Rush announced they have decided on a new head coach to lead the team into their tenth anniversary season this fall.
You could feel the excitement in the air with a room full of fans, staff, Rush players and owners, and local media. Shortly after 6 pm MT the “Voice of the Rush” Mark Binetti took to the podium and announced Rush General Manager Joe Ferras who gave a brief introduction before handing the mic over to Rush Majority Owner Scott Mueller.
“We were presented with many interested candidates for this position, and after careful consideration, we as an ownership group decided to choose Daniel Tetrault to lead us into our 10th anniversary season as the next Head Coach of the Rapid City Rush,” stated Mueller which was met with thunderous applause and cheers from all in attendance.
Tetrault has played on multiple teams across numerous leagues during his professional career that spans from 1995 with the Brandon Wheat Kings in the WHL to his final season as a player with the Rapid City Rush in 2015. The 6’0″ 205-pound defenseman wouldn’t stay away from hockey long as he was named the team’s assistant coach for the 2016-17 season and didn’t lose a single game when he served as the bench boss on occasion.
Immediately, Tetrault grasped the difficulty of the road ahead in turning around an organization that was used to going deep in the playoffs and playing for championships for the bulk of their existence but has been absent from the postseason the past two years.
“I personally believe that we play in the toughest division in the ECHL. I know there will be a lot of work to be done, but I am fully committed to bringing this team to a championship level,” Tetrault expressed. “I also believe that we have the most passionate fans in the ECHL, and I’d like to thank them for their passion and loyalty towards our team as we get ready for a very important season in our team’s history. This is one of the best communities to live in as well. You won’t meet nicer people anywhere else. I promise to bring players that have the passion, determination, and a ‘do whatever it takes’ attitude to put the team first, and to bring our organization back to its winning ways. I am very excited for what lies ahead for our team, and can’t wait for October.”
Tetrault knows what it takes to win championships, having been on the Allen Americans championship team that won the Ray Miron Presidents’ Cup during the CHL’s final year of existence. His energy, drive, and hockey IQ will surely take this team in the right direction.
It’s been awhile since Rush fans have been this excited for hockey in the Black Hills but after hearing his mission statement Thursday night, one can’t help but get goosebumps when you think of the potential electricity that will be returning to the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in October.
What are your thoughts? We’d love to hear what you think of this hire in the comment section below.