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Lightning names ex-player Jeff Halpern as new assistant coach

Forward played for Tampa Bay from 2007-10 as part of a 14-year career in NHL.

The Lightning has filled one of the openings on Jon Cooper's coaching staff, announcing Friday  that former Tampa Bay forward Jeff Halpern has been hired as an assistant coach.

Halpern, 42, has spent the past two seasons as an assistant with the Syracuse Crunch, Tampa Bay's affiliate in the American Hockey League. General manager Steve Yzerman said earlier Friday that he couldn't say whether the team would add one or two assistants to replace associate head coach Rick Bowness and assistant Brad Lauer.

Halpern played 14 seasons in the NHL, finishing his career with 152 goals and 221 assists in 976 games. He played for the Lightning for parts of three seasons, from 2007-10, getting 26 goals and 25 assists.