Expected to remain with Jets’ organization in development/coaching capacity
© — Telegram file photo
IceCap Jason King. — File photo
By Robin Short
Telegram Sports Editor
Corner Brook native Jason King, an original member of the St. John’s IceCaps, is expected to announce his retirement as player from pro hockey today. A news conference is planned for 11 o’clock this morning at Mile One Centre, where King will be joined by IceCaps’ head coach Keith McCambridge,
King, who turns 32 next month, was limited to only nine games with the American Hockey League’s IceCaps last season because of a concussion. He also suffered a head injury earlier in his career when he played for the Manitoba Moose.
King is expected to join the parent Winnipeg Jets’ front office, where he will work in hockey development in a coaching capacity.
He will continue to reside in St. John’s.
Drafted in the seventh round of the 2001 NHL Entry Draft by the Vancouver Canucks, following a three-year career with the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Halifax Mooseheads where he piled up 198 points in 186 games, King appeared in 59 NHL games with the Canucks and Anaheim Ducks.
In 2003-04, he netted 12 goals and 21 points on 47 games for Vancouver. The next season, he suffered a concussion in March following an open-ice hit by Rochester Americans defenceman Doug Janik, which cost him the Calder Cup playoffs and much of the 2005-06 season.
King headed overseas to Sweden for the 2006-07 season before giving the NHL one more shot in 2007-08, appearing in four games with the Ducks but otherwise spending most of the year with the AHL’s Portland Pirates.
He toiled in Germany for three seasons before returning to North America when the Moose relocated to St. John’s to become the IceCaps.
King was fourth in scoring on that first IceCaps squad, with 22 goals and 41 points.
Last season, King appeared in nine of St. John’s first 11 games, but was shut down for the remainder of the year. His most recent concussion came about after colliding with a teammate during a pre-game warm-up, of all things.
“A complete accident, and not even a bad hit,” he said following the 2012-13 season.
“But as time went on, I wasn’t feeling good. It was one of those things where I just felt off ... not right, and I couldn’t get back to feeling normal, whatever that is.
“Everything is back to normal life-wise, but hockey-wise, it’s not where I want to be, which is pretty frustrating.”