Jones gets Knighted
Ben Jones has inked a three-year entry level contract with the Las Vegas Golden Knights. Photo by OHL IMAGES.
Ben Jones had a career season with the Niagara IceDogs and it has paid off with a National Hockey League contract.
The 19-year-old Waterloo native recently inked a three-year, entry level contract with the Las Vegas Knights. The salary is valued at $2.245 million according to capfriendly.com.
Jones was a seventh-round section of the Knights in 2017.
“I got a call two weeks ago and they mentioned they wanted to sign me,” Jones said. “They were really impressed with my season last year and the work I’ve put in so far this off season to get better and improve myself.”
A week of negotiations followed and a deal was struck. The Knights sent the contract to Jones via e-mail. He signed it with his mom looking on.
“It’s one (day) I definitely won’t ever forget,” he said. “My mom was the only one home and then I got to hang out with my friends so they were all pretty excited for me.”
Jones, who collected 30 goals and 79 points for the IceDogs last season while continuing his outstanding two-way play, realizing signing the contract is another step en route to the NHL.
“Now the hard work begins,” he said. “It’s great to have that under my belt going into next year, but it’s not like I can take the off season off just because I got the contract.”
Jones has been working out diligently. He trains twice a week in London with a skating coach and then spends two other days in Aurora with former NHL forward Gary Roberts, working on conditioning.
“It’s been pretty intense so far,” he said. “I’m putting in a lot of work on my skating because I knew that was kind of the thing holding me back. I put a lot of time and effort into that.”
Jones has followed the Knights’ playoff run closely.
“You can’t put it any other way other than it’s pretty unbelievable and a fairytale story,” he said.
“I didn’t get to watch them much during the season because we were so busy but I’ve watched a lot of the playoffs. It’s a pretty special group considering they were the castoffs from other teams.”
Jones can’t wait for IceDogs camp to begin.
“It’s going to be a very exciting year. I think we can really make a run for it.
“I’m just itching to get back to it.”
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