The Tampa Bay Lightning have reassigned defenseman Radko Gudas and forward Richard Panik (PAH-nihk) to the Syracuse Crunch of the American Hockey League today, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced today. The Crunch kick off the Calder Cup Playoffs at home on Saturday night against the Portland Pirates.
Gudas, 6-foot, 204 pounds, has played in 22 games during his rookie season with the Lightning, recording two goals and five points with a plus-3 rating and 38 penalty minutes. His 16:59 in average ice time leads all Tampa Bay rookies. Despite playing in just 22 games, Gudas ranks fifth in the NHL among rookies with 85 hits. He made his NHL debut on March 12 at the Florida Panthers and scored his first goal on March 20 at Toronto. Gudas scorded the game-winning goal on April 24 at home against the Maple Leafs.
A native of Prague, Czech Republic, Gudas has skated in 57 games this season with the Crunch, notching four goals and 20 points. Gudas led the AHL during the regular season with a plus/minus rating of plus-32. He also compiled a team-best and the sixth-most penalty minutes in the AHL with 207. Gudas has played in 228 career AHL games with the Norfolk Admirals and the Crunch, registering 15 goals, 57 points and 567 penalty minutes.
Gudas was originally drafted by the Lightning in the third round, 66th overall, of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.
Panik, 6-foot-1, 208 pounds, has appeared in 25 games with Tampa Bay during his first NHL season, registering five goals and nine points while averaging 11:19 in ice time. He made his NHL debut on February 2 at the Tampa Bay Times Forum versus the Montreal Canadiens and scored his first goal on February 23 at the Carolina Hurricanes. Panik recorded his first multi-goal and three-point game on April 13 at the Washington Capitals.
A native of Martin, Slovakia, Panik has skated in 51 games with Syracuse this season, posting 22 goals and 41 points to go along with a plus-17 rating. He finished the season ranking third on the Crunch for goals and fifth for points. Panik has played in 120 career NHL games with the Crunch and the Norfolk Admirals.
Panik was selected by the Lightning in the second round, 52nd overall, of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.