Christian Collis had arranged to meet Joseph Fisher in Longden Coleham to buy cannabis, but ended up stabbing him three times when caught trying to steal the drugs.
He was sentenced to four years and eight months in prison after admitting assault causing grievous bodily harm with intent at Shrewsbury Crown Court yesterday.
Mr Kevin Jones, prosecuting, said: “The complainant, Joseph Fisher, had admitted he was out and about selling cannabis.
“They had arranged to meet in Longden Coleham and Mr Fisher was approached by three men.”
The court heard that Collis snatched a bag of cannabis before running off and being chased by Mr Fisher before the two grabbed each other.
Mr Jones said: “Mr Fisher described being struck. He said they didn’t feel like punches but as a result of what had happened he let go.
“It was after this happened he realised he had been stabbed. He panicked and said he put pressure on the wound and made contact with a friend for help.”
Mr Fisher suffered three stab wounds. One in the left side of his back area, a second in his middle back area and a third in the left side of his abdomen.
For Collis, Mr Owen Edwards said the case was surrounded by “a set of unusual circumstances”.
“It’s unusual to see a man of 22 in this courtroom for serious offences such as this, a man of previous good character, with both of his parents in the public gallery offering support.
“The sadness in this case is how quickly his life spiralled out of control.”
Sentencing, Judge Peter Barrie, said: "I accept you were going through a life crisis when this happened.
"On the other hand we are all responsible for our actions and you can't escape that because of the difficulties you were facing at the time.
"Most despicably, having a knife for what you said was your own protection. The consequences could have been much worse than they already are.
He added: "It is no surprise that Mr Fisher chased after you and you got into conflict.
"Never mind that cannabis is illegal but you acted to steal it.
"And it's an aggravating feature that you were effected by the influence of cocaine at the time of the incident."
Collis, of Leech Road, Malpas in Cheshire, was also sentenced to six months in prison for possessing a bladed article, two months for possession of MDMA, two months for possession of cocaine, 12 months for theft, and 14 days for possession of cannabis, all to be served concurrently.