John Wright was born November 9, 1948 in Toronto, Ontario. The first choice, 4th overall, of the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 1966 Amateur Draft, Wright was a 5'11" 175 lbs. forward whose road to the NHL went from junior hockey to university hockey before making his big-league debut in 1972.
A member of the Ontario Hockey Association's Junior B York Steel in 1965-66, Wright accounted for 44 points in 36 games before joining the Toronto Marlboros of the Ontario Junior "A" Hockey League for the next two seasons.
The 1966-67 season was Wright's first full season with the Marlboros, leading them to the 1967 Memorial Cup championship after winning the OHA Branch Championship. During his second season with the Marlboros, Wright doubled his offensive totals from his rookie year and finished fifth in team scoring with 64 points.
Following his two years with the Marlboros, Wright spent the next four years as a member of the University of Toronto Blues, capturing four consecutive Canadian championships (1969-70-71-72). An Ontario-Quebec Athletic Association First Team All-Star in 1969, and an Ontario University Athletic Association First Team All-Star in 1972, he graduated from the University of Toronto with a degree in Health and Physical Education.
After having his rights claimed by Vancouver of the Western Hockey League from Toronto in the Reverse Draft in 1970, Wright's NHL rights were transferred to the Vancouver Canucks when owners of the WHL's Vancouver franchise were awarded an NHL expansion team later on that spring.
In 1972-73, Wright made his NHL debut with the Vancouver Canucks, playing in 71 games and accounted for 37 points in his rookie season. The 1973-74 season saw Wright play only 20 games with the Canucks before he was traded to the St. Louis Blues, where he finished the season with 15 points.
After spending only a half season with the Blues in St. Louis, Wright was claimed in the Expansion Draft by the Kansas City Scouts where he played in four games while spending the better part of the season with the Providence Reds of the AHL.
Following the 1974-75 season, Wright had played in 127 NHL games, registering 16 goals and 36 assists for 52 points