Remember Mark Jankowski?
The centerman was drafted by the Flames in the first round of the 2012 Draft, but both the general manager and assistant general manager that took him are gone from the organization now. For his part, Jankowski seems unphased. Speaking with the media during development camp, he spoke about expectations for his Providence College Friars club and the 12-man freshman class he joined the team with in 2012-13 (including fellow Flames picks Jon Gillies and John Gilmour) – they’d love to win a championship before they finish their collegiate careers.
You may not have the flashy offensive numbers that guys like Johnny Gaudreau and Bill Arnold have, but you’ve emerged as one of Hockey East’s better face-off threats. Has that changed how you’ve been used at Providence College?
One of my big focuses was to be a really good two-way player, so I want to be relied on in all situations. So if there’s a face-off in our end and we’re protecting a one-goal lead with 10 seconds left, I know our coach has faith in me to go out and win that draw. He put me in a lot of situations. Protecting a lead, trying to get that one goal at the end of the game, penalty kill, power play, I just want to be used in every situation and just help the team in any way possible.
You’re heading into your junior year at Providence College. Are you looking forward to having an expanded role and being one of the older guys on the team?
Yeah, you know, it’s pretty good. We’ve got a really good team. Like I said, we only lose three guys, so we have a big chunk of the players back. I’m sure that me and some of the other guys will be relied on pretty heavily. That’s exactly what you want. You want to be relied on in those key situations to help the team wherever you can.
Is your focus on getting ready to be a pro as soon as you can, or just about improving where you can every day?
It’s more getting a little better every day. Physically I want to get, like I said, a little stronger, because you don’t want to rush anything, because that’s when injuries start to happen pretty seriously, when you try to go too fast, too big, too quickly. I’ve been getting a little bigger, stronger every day and that’s been my mentality.