By George Johnson
Not merely Mondays, Wednesdays and/or Fridays.
More than in fits and starts, heres and theres, flashes and glimpses.
“Every day,” says Mark Jankowski. “You have to bring it every single day.
“That’s my goal.
“Because this is the best league in the world. An everyday league.
“What I want from myself next season is more consistency in my game, to play well consistently instead of just in spurts.
“I’m glad the business side is out of the way now so I can concentrate on the hockey side.”
On Wednesday, the Flames and their 23-year-old centre finalized a two-season commitment that avoids arbitration and averages out to $1.675 million per annum.
In other signing news, an independent arbitrator has awarded defenceman Brett Kulak $900,000 for the upcoming campaign. Graduating from AHL Stockton last year, The Big Jankowski’s spent the summer training and skating back home in Ontario this summer.
The 2012 first-round (21st overall) draft choice displayed his vast potential by contributing 17 goals – including a four-snipe curtain-dropper in Game 82 versus Vegas – and 25 points in his rookie turn.
The aim for 2018-2019 is to shorten those intermittent lulls in performance that are invariably a part of the developmental process at the NHL level.
“All great players,” Jankowski reiterates, “are consistent. Number one. That’s the one thing young players – and I’m no exception – have to learn.
“I think overall it was a good year for me, a learning year, my first full year. Just watching the older guys and taking notes from them … how to take care of yourself, for example. It’s a really long season, a step up from the AHL, and you need to learn how to make sure you’re best prepared to be at your best ever night.
“I aspire to be a better player – someone who’s counted on every night – and that’s a big, big part of it.”
The Jankowski deal means one thing’s crossed off Brad Treliving’s to-do list.
“All things considered, Mark had a good rookie year,” estimates the Flames’ GM. “Now he’s got to build on that. We feel there’s still a lot of upside.
“It’s a process.
“Mark’s an interesting guy. Everybody thinks he’s been the organization a long time, they think he’s been in the league for 10 years. He’s played 70-odd games. The development he’s gone thorough just with the growth of his body over the last while …
“He’s going through all the rinks in the league for the first time, going up against top players for the first time. This is his first go around the track.
“He’s going to know what’s coming next year.
“To get this done, I thought it was a good result for both parties.
“I told him that hopefully in two years he’s coming back looking for a whole lot more.”