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For the 22nd episode of the Devils Official Podcast this season, our guest is Devils alumni Cam Janssen.
Janssen had two stints with the Devils. He was drafted by the club in 2002 in the fourth round and played two seasons for the Devils before being traded to his hometown St. Louis for eventual team captain Bryce Salvador. Janssen returned to New Jersey for parts of three more seasons in 2011 which included the team's run to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2012.
Janssen was asked about his popularity in New Jersey, which still endures today.
"I'm the kinda guy that had buddies on the ice and buddies in the locker room, but always made friends away from the rink anywhere I played. I always made friends. I made so many in Jersey for some reason. I met different people," Janssen told host Matt Loughlin.
"My wife Kate and I, we go back there once a year to hopefully watch a Blues and Devils game but always go back and reminisce with all our friends that we made over there."
Janssen's playing career ended in 2016 after a season playing in England with the Nottingham Panthers. He talked about his evolution from playing hockey to trying to figure out life after hockey.
"It's completely different than when you play hockey for a living," he said. "Maybe I should have veered off and tried to expand a little bit but you just don't have time. You're just fixated on the then and now. And that was always hockey. So I played overseas and I was kind of in that dilemma where, what am I going to do? I got a couple phone calls from some radio stations in St. Louis and they said we'd love to have you, come on in and try out for a different show here and there.
"I got all these job offers and I started getting into the radio business. I absolutely love it. I have a blast and it's my calling. I'm doing radio and my own radio show. I have my own podcast. I do TV stuff, which is a completely different animal."
Janssen talked about expanding his horizons on his radio show beyond just talking about hockey. A necessity in a market like St. Louis.
"I got thrown in the fire a couple of times. One time, I had to talk for two hours because there's no hockey going on and, you know, you don't just talk hockey in St. Louis, you've gotta talk Cardinals baseball. You have to adapt to every other sport and have an opinion on things."
Janssen reflected on a time when there was a PGA event in town and he had to build his show around the discussion.
"I'm watching it on the TV in the studio, writing my notes down. I have a couple of guys I know play golf in there. They helped me out, but I adapted and I figured it out. And it was actually a pretty decent show. I'd never broke down a game of golf in my life but I did that day."