The twenty-two-year-old forward for the Utica Comets has come into his own this season.
The life of an AHL fan can be tough for a number of reasons. One of the most consistent thorns in the side of fans is roster changes normally from call-ups to the parent club. After already being called up once to New Jersey this season the Utica Comets will once again be without rising star Alexander Holtz – this time joining Team Sweden for the World Junior Championship tournament until at least January 5th. Losing a top prospect on paper should no doubt hurt however during Friday night’s 3-2 overtime victory over the Cleveland Monsters one of Holtz’s fellow countrymen proved he can step up and pull the wagon.
Fabian Zetterlund notched both a game-tying goal and the game-winning goal in Cleveland, adding to an already stellar season for the Comets leading the squad with eight goals. The fan dubbed “Fabio” has also added seven assists bringing his point total to fifteen through seventeen games with the team and has played in New Jersey three games this year. The fifteen points this season have already almost matched last season’s total when as a member of the Binghamton Devils he notched seven goals and twelve assists in thirty-four games. This season’s numbers are without question impressive but what is even more valuable for the Comets is the hustle and grit that cannot be measured with statistics. Zetterlund does not simply bank on his ability to score which he certainly has, he’s willing to do the dirty work and spread the wealth in a manner that helps the Comets win night in and night out.
Between playing a complete 200 foot game and a visible love of playing in front of the Adirondack Bank Center crowd, Zetterlund has already managed to become a fan favorite. After all of the adversity the Comets have fought through this season, Zetterlund’s continued success in the absence of Holtz will maintain the “next man up” mentality that has led to a league-leading 18-1-2-0 record.