Canadiens’ Harris Deserves King Clancy Recognition

After playing in ten games during the 2021-22 season, Jordan Harris opened a small glimpse into the future of the Montreal Canadiens blue line. In the last game of the season, he registered his first NHL goal to open the scoring in a game that the Habs won 10-2 against the Florida Panthers. While the end of the season left the Canadiens in last place, it also left fans with hope for brighter days.

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Fast forward to the following season, Harris took on a much larger role than he expected. A blue line riddled with injuries, the Canadiens’ management relied heavily on its youth to carry to load. At 22 years of age, Harris did the best he could to fill in a top-four role and put up a respectable 17 points in 65 games while spending time with the likes of Jonathan Kovacevic and David Savard.

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The King Clancy Memorial Trophy is awarded to the player who best exemplifies leadership qualities, both on and off the ice, while becoming a contributing member of the community. There’s no confusion surrounding the Canadiens’ decision to nominate Harris, as the youngster went from rookie to leader in just one season.

Harris Made Several Appearances for Good Causes

Showing the maturity of a seasoned veteran, Harris was an active member of several great causes. An advocate for marginalized people as a person of mixed race, he took the opportunity to use his platform during Black History Month to discuss important issues regarding discrimination and racism. Harris also took part in the Inuit Games, taking to the ice with 15 youngsters from a community organization known as Native Montreal and giving them a day they won’t soon forget.

Jordan Harris Montreal Canadiens
Jordan Harris, Montreal Canadiens (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Harris also participated in several minor hockey events in the province, taking part in practices with youth teams and participating in the Patrice Bergeron ProAM. The Montreal Canadiens Children’s Foundation also held public skate sessions with the players, and among the familiar faces was a smiling Harris, always excited to be surrounded by his young fans.

Montreal Community Means Everything to Harris

Playing for one of the most coveted sports franchises in the world, it’s easy to get lost in the glitz and glamour of Montreal fame. As a 22-year-old, Harris exemplifies everything required to succeed in the city, including embracing the honour of playing for the Canadiens. In an episode of the Popternative podcast, Harris described what it meant to him to be a part of a team with the history of the Habs.

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“One thing I’m excited about is to be a part of the community,” stated Harris during the summer of 2022. Community engagement and embracing his background have always been vital to his upbringing, as evidenced by his contributions this year. Coached by his father during his minor hockey days, Harris learned firsthand what it meant to be a participating community member.

Jordan Harris Montreal Canadiens
Jordan Harris, Montreal Canadiens (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

“He coached me and my brother growing up, so everyone knows him around the area as a hockey coach,” Harris said in an interview for the Canadiens YouTube page. “It’s not just okay just to be a hockey player. I think part of that becomes a responsibility to give back and share your experiences.” Thanks to his upbringing and understanding of the sport’s continuing issues, Harris strives to be a voice for the youth who may have doubts about being included in hockey.

As a voice for minorities, a regular among youth program-organized events, and someone who has fully embraced the culture of Montreal, there is no better member of the Canadiens organization than Harris. It may be unprecedented for a rookie to receive a nomination, but Harris could become the first Canadiens player to win the King Clancy Memorial Trophy since 2007 when Saku Koivu earned the honour.