Following in his Father’s Footsteps: The Jack York Story
By Mike Beasley
By all accounts, it appears that Jack York has taken a bite out of an apple that has
fallen from the family tree.
That tree is in the backyard of his home in Ottawa and the property of his dad,
Jason York who made his mark in the NHL between 1992 and 2007 as steady, two-
In 757 NHL games over 13 seasons, York recorded 42 goals and 187 assists for 229
points, along with 621 penalty minutes as a member of the Detroit Red Wings,
Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, Ottawa Senators, Nashville Predators, and Boston
Now its Jack’s turn to be in the hockey spotlight and he’s earned every second of
The recently turned 17-year old, (Sept. 17) made of name for himself when he
was presented with two interesting hockey options in just four months.
After completing his rookie year last April with the Kemptville 73’s in the CCHL
Tier1, the 5’11-180 lb. blue liner committed to the University of Maine Black
York made the league’s All Rookie team with Kemptville after registering six goals
and 13 points in 49 games which must have impressed Maine head coach Dennis
“Red” Gendron enough to make an offer.
“It was a great feeling knowing that there were people watching and recognizing
what I can do on the ice. I was very delighted when they (Maine) made the offer.”
But his time as a Maine commit was basically a summer affair when the Kanata,
Ontario native opted to sign with the Kitchener Rangers of the Ontario Hockey
League (OHL) on September 1.
York was a fifth-round, 98th overall choice in the 2016 OHL Priority Selection but
opted to stay close to home in his first season of junior hockey
Twelve months later, York has decided to play major junior hockey in Canada
rather than moving to Maine and play NCAA Division 1.
But what made York switch from American college hockey to one of the Canadian
Hockey League’s and the OHL’s most successful franchises?
“One of the main reasons I accepted the Rangers offer was because it gave me an
opportunity to play a year in the OHL, get experience in the league and develop
more, before my NHL Draft year in 2019,” said York.
“In addition, I decided to play in Kitchener because it is definitely one of the best
organizations in the OHL. I felt it was a great place for me.”
The on ice similarities to Jack and his dad may be a coincidence but certainly
something to make note of.
Jason played one season for the Smiths Falls Bear in the old CJHL, now the CCHL
in 1986-87 before taking flight to the OHL with the Hamilton Steelhawks, Windsor
Spitfires and yes, the Kitchener Rangers.
Jack seems to have followed suit with a successful year of Jr. ’A’ then the move to
Without the label of student-athlete, York has made it clear that his sights are set
on impressing the NHL scouts over the next two seasons.
His September birth date will allow him to play two full seasons before being
eligible to be drafted, which suits Jack just fine.
“I hope to use the two years to my advantage because it gives me a lot of time to
show people what I can do on the ice,” York admitted.
“I will need to compete when I’m on the ice and play every shift like it is my last.
Another thing that is important is to play with confidence and show scouts what
I’m capable of.”
Beside his coaches, York will be able to reach out to his dad for any help or advice
which is something he has been accustomed to during his young hockey career.
“My dad has helped me tremendously along the way, he’s not only helped me
with my game on the ice by but has also mentored and shown me what it takes to
get to the next level. It definitely is an advantage and it is something I don’t take
While Jack sorted through his decison, his father purchased the 73’s over the summer
and has assumed a role as an assistant coach with the team.