Linesman Justin Johnson officiated his first NHL game tonight, making his league debut in his hometown of Winnipeg as the Jets hosted the Nashville Predators.
He took the ice alongside referees Justin St. Pierre and Peter MacDougall, and fellow linesman Ryan Daisy.
Not often you hear a linesman get a cheer but that's what just happened for Winnipegger Justin Johnson who is working his first NHL regular season game. @ScoutingTheRefs
— Dave Minuk (@ICdave) October 24, 2021
From the NHLOA:
Johnson, a native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, began officiating at the age of 13 in the Seven Oaks Minor Hockey Association. He finished playing hockey with the Garden City Gophers of the Winnipeg High School Hockey League. Johnson was introduced to elite levels of officiating by his mentor Kelsey Mahoney who introduced him to resources in leagues within Manitoba to further develop his officiating career. While Johnson served as Referee in Chief of the Seven Oaks Minor Hockey association, he officiated various leagues within Winnipeg while also studying a Bachelors of Commerce degree at the University of Manitoba.
Johnson officiated at the 2019 Western Hockey League (WHL) Cup which allowed him to showcase his abilities which earned him a spot on the officiating roster for the remainder of the 2019-20 WHL season. Shortly after in that same season, Justin made another big step in his officiating journey when he was added to the American Hockey League officiating staff to complete the remaining of the 2019-20 season. Johnson attended the 2021 National Hockey League Officiating Exposure Combine in August where he was offered a NHL Minor League Linesman contract. Johnson credits his family and friends for pushing his development which has resulted in his accomplishment in being hired to the NHL.
Johnson will wear #57 this season.
Congrats to Johnson on the start of his National Hockey League career!