Janik Signs 2-Way Deal to Return to Lightning

(Tampa Bay Lightning press release)

The Tampa Bay Lightning have re-signed defenseman Doug Janik to a one-year, two-way contract, Executive Vice President & General Manager Jay Feaster announced.

Janik, a 6-foot-1, 209-pound native of Agawam, Massachusetts, played his first full NHL season with Tampa Bay in 2006-07 after earning a roster spot during training camp. He finished the season with two goals and 11 points in 75 games. Janik averaged 14:28 of ice time per game last season and ranked fourth among Lightning defensemen in blocked shots with 98. He scored his first NHL goal on January 2 at Montreal and recorded his first point on November 22 at Florida. Janik also played in one Stanley Cup Playoff game. He is a veteran of 85 regular season games and six playoff games with the Lightning and the Buffalo Sabres.

"We have been trying to sign Doug Janik since our season ended prematurely in late April; however, the issue was and has always been that we were not prepared to offer him a one-way contract,” Feaster said. “While we obviously lost a pair of defensemen this summer, the fact remained that when we acquired Shane O'Brien at the trade deadline last year Doug became the odd-man out of the lineup. We have every confidence that Doug can and will compete hard in camp to win a job on our blue line, but we felt the need to protect our downside in the event one of our other players jumped over him and grabbed the final spot.

“Doug tested the free agency market and received quite a few two-way offers. Inasmuch as he knows our system, he has a head coach who knows him and likes him and is comfortable with him, and because he believes in our organization and the way we do business through the merit system, he elected to come back to Tampa rather than sign elsewhere. We are thrilled that he is back in the fold and we look forward to having him in training camp competing for a spot."

Janik, 27, played in 376 games with Rochester of the American Hockey League in five seasons and scored 18 goals while recording 91 points. He registered a plus-41 rating, four power-play goals and one shorthanded goal in his AHL career. An alumnus of the University of Maine, Janik has appeared in 30 AHL playoff games and has scored one goal while adding four assists. In 2002 he was nominated for the Timex Ironman Player Award by the Professional Hockey Players’ Association and became the first Rochester defenseman in since 1984-85 to play in all 80 regular season games. Following the season he was also named the team’s Rookie of the Year, Most Improved Player and Unsung Hero.

Janik played in 13 games with the United States at the World Junior Championships in 1999 and 2000. He served as the Captain for the University of Maine Black Bears for the 1999-00 and 2000-01 seasons and was named to the 2000-01 NCAA All-East Regional Team. During the 1999-00 season Janik was a member of the New England Hockey Writers Association All-Star Team and was a runner-up for the best defensive defenseman in Hockey East. He also won a National Championship with Maine in 1999.

He was selected by Buffalo in the second round, 55th overall, at the 1999 NHL Entry Draft and was originally signed by the Lightning on July 6, 2006.

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No Takers

There were obviously no takers anywhere to give Janik a one way contract. But now there seems to be a good number of dmen who can be used either in Tampa or sent to Norfolk.

Should be some spirited competition at training camp for the few available slots on defense.

Competition

No kidding.

A guy could go from being on the starting line for the No.6 spot in Tampa to falling back to the No.6 spot in NF.

There's also a surplus of

There's also a surplus of AHL level defensemen Claude can get Jay to move to pick up scoring help in Norfolk if he needs to.

No Crowley; Tough for Egener/Rogers

I'd say this Janik signing for sure puts the nail in the coffin of a possible Dane Crowley signing after Traverse City. I'd say almost assuredly means he's headed back to juniors for a final year.

As crowded as Norfolk will be on the blueline, prospects Egener and Rogers are going to have some stiff competition to get significant ice time. Rogers does have one more season after this one left on his 3 year entry deal. Egener, on the other hand, will up for a new contract next summer and needs to make a leap in development. Crowley will be under consideration for a contract, and Kevin Quick could be a darkhorse to come out of college after one season and snag a contract. And there's the continued threat of the second coming of Andreas Holmqvist. Egener and Rogers won't have the luxury they had in Springfield of having virtually no competition for ice time.

Egener will make that team.

Egener will make that team. Stirling didn't entrust him with 1st pairing minutes last season without cause. This is his fourth year of pro and he's the most experienced of our prospects. Rogers and Mihalik probably don't have to worry either. Lundin??? He's got to be a little anxious now. Lundin's the #8 d-man in Norfolk right now by my count.

I'm assuming Jancevski and Smaby make the Lightning:

Janik, Lampman, Leach, Schneider, Egener, Rogers, Mihalik. There's your seven.

I have a feeling Jay either trades a d-man or we lose Janik or Lampman on waivers when sending them down in this scenario though.

Just Let Him Wait

The field of dmen that could be in Norfolk this year is really crowded. Pete also said the surplus could be used to obtain some scoring for Norfolk. But I would like to see how things play out.

Signing Crowley this year would be a mistake. It would start the clock ticking on certain deadlines such as when he can become a UFA. So let him spend another year in the juniors while the situation here sorts itself out.

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