After being sent back to junior from the National Hockey League, some players take a few games to adjust. Their timing can be off. Sometimes their head isn’t completely where it needs to be.
Max Jones returned to the London Knights from the Anaheim Ducks and hit the ice as if he had actually sprouted wings.
Jones put up eight points in his first four games and then in back-to-back match-ups against the Kitchener Rangers and the Saginaw Spirit, the Orion, Michigan native exploded.
The burst of flame that Jones displayed in a 27-hour period has landed him OHL Player of the Week honours. Jones scored twice and added five assists, even though he missed part of the third period against the Spirit.
It wasn’t just the numbers that Jones posted. It was the way he posted them.
With the Knights down 3-0 to the Rangers, late in the second period, Jones set up Cliff Pu with a soft little centering pass to put London on the board. The next shift, the Knights scored again.
Early in the third, the Knights went to the power play and Jones wristed a puck from the left point that J.J. Piccinich tipped in to tie the game.
Not finished there, as the game went into the final minute, tied 4-4, Jones got a puck to Robby Thomas and his centering pass went back to Victor Mete at the blue line and Mete scored the winner with 39.4 seconds left.
The next night, Jones became even more of a beast with two goals and two more assists. He assisted on the first goal of the game by Sam Miletic and then knocked home a puck that was wrapped in front in the second period, allowing London to reverse their fortunes from the night before by constructing a 3-0 lead.
Jones next point saw him fly down the right wing, cut between two Saginaw defenders and rip a shot past Devils’ draft pick, Evan Cormier. Jones suffered an injury shortly after that and left the game to head to the dressing room, only to return and set up the Knights’ final goal on the power play.
He did not play on Sunday, but by that time he had already done enough to be recognized for the top performance of the week.
The Knights sit one point out of first place overall and will host the Soo Greyhounds on Friday night at 7:30.