Following Jerry York's 900th win last night against Merrimack, The Boston Hockey Blog checked in with BU coach Jack Parker. Parker had just won his 872th game career game -- all with Boston University -- and trails York by 28 games for the most number of wins by an active coach.
Both York and Parker trail the retired Ron Mason, who earned 924 career wins at Lake Superior State, Bowling Green and most notably Michigan State, finishing 924-380-83.
Here's what The Boston Hockey Blog referred to as Parker sending "his regards York's way."
"You reach milestones like that by being able to coach for 40 years," Parker said. "You get chances like that. I don't mean to diminish [the 900 wins]. The reason why he's been able to coach for 40 years is because he's been a real successful coach. He hasn't been fired. Sometimes coaches get fired. You don't get a chance to coach that long."
Yes, I know the two coaches are friends. But if I'm congratulating my arch-rival and long-time "friend" on a tremendous career accomplishment, I can probably think of better openings than "yeah, this is what you can do when you coach for 40 years and don't get fired."
Parker did backtrack a bit and compliment York for ... err ... turning around the Boston College hockey program.
"I think the more remarkable thing is how many of those wins took place at Boston College where he's had an unbelievable turnaround. When he got in there, that place wasn't going too well. And they've been fabulous since his second year or third year there. So he might get credit for 900 wins. They ought to talk about how many wins he got at BC and how many big wins they've gotten at BC. They've had a fabulous run while he's been the coach there."
Or we could talk about the fact that York took Bowling Green -- Bowling Green! -- to a National title in 1984, outlasting Minnesota-Duluth in 4 overtimes. Or that despite the programs struggles in the early 1990s before York's arrival, BC was previously coached by two legends of the sport in their own right in Ceglarski and Kelley.
Both quotes smack of jealousy and resignation to the fact that York has surpassed Parker's own coaching track record at BU. Obviously York is way too classy for this, but when Parker earns career win 900 next season (or the season after), I hope York starts off by stating that it's a miracle that Parker was able to coach at BU for 40 years and hasn't been fired despite winning a National Championship just once every 15 seasons, averaging kicking 1-2 players off the team every year due to disciplinary problems or verbally assaulting Hockey East referees.
Stay classy, Parker.