Joe Ward suited up for four National Hockey League games during the 1980-81 season, the same year he played his third and final year of Junior with the Seattle Breakers.
Ward, who was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 1980 Entry Draft and though the center was able to direct two shots on net, he wasn't able to register a point and posted a minus-2 plus/minus rating. His whirl-wind season ended with him joining the Rockies farm club in Forth Worth for their Central Hockey League playoff run.
In 1981-82, his first full season as a professional, Ward spent in Forth Worth and was able to score six goals and 21 points in 32 games. The following year he split between the Wichita Wind and the Muskegon Mohawks of the International Hockey League. With the Mohawks he scored 34 goals and 59 points in 54 games, but was unable to capture the attention of the big league club. Ward would play just nine games the next year, in what proved to be his final season.