Tonight at the Bell Centre in Montreal QC, almost fifteen years after stepping on the ice for the first time in an NHL Regular Season Game, referee Justin St.Pierre will be working his 1,000th NHL Regular Season Game when the New York Rangers are in town to play the Canadiens. St.Pierre who hand picked his officiating crew for this special occasion, will be joined on the ice by fellow referee Brian Pochmara while veteran linesmen Brian Murphy and Michel Cormier will be completing the officiating crew.
St.Pierre, was born in Dolbeau QC, a small town in the Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean region of the Quebec province. He played all of his minor hockey in his native region reaching the Midget and Junior levels in Normandin and Dolbeau. His officiating journey started at the age of 15, when he decided to join his older brother who was already blowing the whistle at the local rink on the weekends in order to earn a few bucks. His first five seasons were spent skating at local rinks, working every level of minor hockey before being promoted to the Elite Provincial Officiating Program, a program that identify young talented officials in order to officiate Midget AAA and Junior A hockey games all over the province of Quebec. Two years after cracking the provincial program lineup, St.Pierre made another big step in his officiating journey when he was hired by the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League as a referee. He would go on and spend a total of three seasons with the QMJHL before packing his bags and moving to Pensacola, FL in the summer of 1997 after signing a contract with the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) as a referee. Over the course of the following six seasons with the ECHL, St.Pierre will have the ultimate honor to be selected three times to work the prestigious Kelly Cup Finals (1999, 2002 & 2003) and was also selected to work the 2001 ECHL All-Star Game in North Little Rock, Arkansas. The National Hockey League offered him a NHL Minor Leagues Referee contract in the summer of 2003. He was promoted three years later to a full time NHL status at the age of 34.
His NHL debut came on November 9th, 2005 in Columbus OH when he skated in a game between the St. Louis Blues and the Blue Jackets.
The NHLOA would like to congratulate referee Justin St.Pierre on reaching this amazing milestone.