(GLENDALE, Ariz.) — After four seasons with the team, Rick Tocchet’s time as head coach for the Arizona Coyotes has come to an end.

The team announced on Sunday that Tocchet, 57, will not be returning to his role when his contract expires on June 30.

“After meeting with Rick, we have agreed that a coaching change is in the best interest of the club,” Coyotes General Manager Bill Armstrong said in a statement. “This was a very difficult decision, but we believe that it is time for a new direction and new leadership.”

“Rick is a very good coach and an incredible person, and we sincerely appreciate all his hard work and dedication to the Coyotes the past four years. We are grateful for everything that he has done for our organization and wish him the best of luck in the future,” Armstrong added.

Since joining the Coyotes on July 11, 2017, Tocchet has led the team to a record of 125-131-34 in 290 games and helped Arizona reach the playoffs for the first time since 2012.

“It’s been an honor to coach the Coyotes the past four seasons,” Tocchet said in a statement. “I have great respect and admiration for all the players I coached in Arizona, along with my coaching staff, the medical staff, the equipment managers, the PR staff and the team services staff. They are the best in the NHL, and I appreciate all their help and hard work. I also want to thank the fans of the Valley for all their support. I have loved living, playing, and coaching in Arizona and this place will always be special to me.”

The Coyotes said they will begin searching for a new head coach immediately.

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