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Edmonton’s Jones was detained at border after mistaken identity snafu

Jan 8, 2013, 12:51 PM EDT

Ryan Jones AP

The lockout wasn’t especially kind to Ryan Jones.

Aside from taking away his livelihood, the work stoppage also landed the Oilers forward in some (temporary) hot legal water while trying to cross the Canadian border on a drive to Minnesota.

Here’s the story, from the Edmonton Journal:

There was a warrant out for the arrest of a Ryan Jones, and the customs’ folks thought they had their man and weren’t immediately buying his story about being a locked-out NHL forward.

“At the time, I was terrified. I didn’t know what was going on. I was treated like a criminal for the first hour and a half. First time I’ve been in handcuffs,” said Jones, who grew up in Ontario but lives in Minnesota in the summer months.

“You know the story: guilty until proven innocent. They (customs officers) wouldn’t go into details what the other Ryan Jones was wanted for.”

Handcuffs? It obviously was for something more than passing bad cheques.

“Yeah,” laughed the Oilers winger.

Jones was traveling to the University of Minnesota for an informal skate with other NHLers — and if you thought his bad luck ended with the border incident, you’d be wrong.

While skating at U of M, the 28-year-old took a puck to the face. The injury was bad enough that Jones required surgery around his eye, a procedure that will keep him out of action until sometime in February.

“There was some structural damage there, but it was quickly fixed. It wasn’t a complicated surgery,” he said. “There’s still some inflammation, but I’ve had one checkup and will be going back for another this Monday (Jan. 14), then I’ll be coming to Edmonton.”

Hopefully the drive goes a little better this time around.

  1. bigben1513 - Jan 8, 2013 at 1:17 PM

    Grew up in a border town in MN custom agents don’t treat people kindly bet he didn’t even get a apology

    • zetaone - Jan 8, 2013 at 1:35 PM

      Same here, grew up in Buffalo. The Niagara border crossing ‘agents’ are total self-righteous d-bags. They are one step above mall cops, and a step below airport TSA in terms of daft rudeness.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Jan 8, 2013 at 1:53 PM

        Slightly disagree with zeta. In my experience, border agents are dozens of steps below TSA folks. I’ve had several very pleasant encounters with TSA people, but an extremely unpleasant time with border guards, especially one major jerk at Sumas, Wash., who grilled me for an hour and had others unload and search my car. The issue he said was my sealed, legal package of an OTC Canadian medicine, which he said contained too many pills, according to a new rule he did not show me. His power trip was quite alarming.

  2. greatminnesotasportsmind - Jan 8, 2013 at 1:39 PM

    That’s the ultimate reality check as a NHL player. People in Canada don’t know you as Ryan Jones the hockey player or Ryan Jones the criminal.

  3. juanhughjazz - Jan 8, 2013 at 9:35 PM

    what’s hard to believe is that it took 90 minutes to figure out they had the wrong guy. my 5 year old could have been more efficient than that. the border agents i’ve been exposed to have been more than polite(especially so over the last few years)

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