From foes to linemates, Kawaguchi and Jones finally team up

“Right here we go.”

Lastly, they have been on the identical aspect.

Kawaguchi and Jones went head-to-head—with their strains typically matching up towards one another—9 occasions in 24 days this spring in excessive-stakes video games. Seven of the video games got here within the British Columbia Hockey League finals. Two further video games got here the next week within the Western Canada Cup with a berth within the nationwide RBC Cup on the road.

They noticed loads of one another in these video games.

Kawaguchi was the excessive scorer for the Chilliwack Chiefs, blowing via the BCHL document books with a prolific playoff run.

Jones was one of the best shutdown centerman for the Penticton Vees, who earned the task of making an attempt to decelerate Kawaguchi.

“I discovered myself taking a look at him each shift, particularly once we have been away,” Kawaguchi stated. “It was loads of video games. We obtained to know one another fairly nicely. These have been fairly robust battles, however I am glad I am on the identical workforce now.”

Kawaguchi lined up on Jones’ left wing throughout UND’s 6-2 exhibition win over the College of Manitoba on Saturday. Kawaguchi scored a aim and Jones tallied an help.

There is a good probability they will be collectively once more Friday night time because the Preventing Hawks open the common season at Alaska Anchorage (10:07 p.m., Sullivan Area).

For these within the BCHL, there is a little bit of an amusement seeing Kawaguchi and Jones as linemates after they completed 1-2 in BCHL playoff scoring final season and matching up towards one another within the finals.

Penticton coach Fred Harbinson, a former assistant at St. Cloud State, stated: “I am positive it was humorous for them final yr, figuring out they have been going to be teammates ahead of later. However they each needed to win that championship dangerous.”

So did Harbinson.

That is why he assigned Jones to match Kawaguchi’s line as a lot as attainable. That was simpler to do when Penticton was the house workforce and had final line change.

“Kawaguchi put collectively a playoff run that I hadn’t seen in a few years on this league,” Harbinson stated. “He received actual scorching within the playoffs. It was sort of loopy the purpose totals he was placing up.

“On the similar time, Jonesy did a hell of a job towards him. I have been right here eleven years and there aren’t many who compete as exhausting as Nick Jones. He was our captain for a cause. In huge video games and large moments, Nick was all the time there for us. His aggressive hearth is second to none. When the large moments occurred, he was greater than assured in his capability that he would get it carried out, and that might trickle via the room. Everybody within the room obtained this sense that we might…

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