Bernie "Boom Boom" Geoffrion was the innovator, Bobby Hull was the world-record holder, and Al MacInnis was the master of consistency, winning seven hardest shot competitions.
Over the years, many NHL players have been known for their blistering shots. I've compiled a list of five defensemen for 2010 that goalies around the league fear.
Originally drafted second overall in the 1993 Entry Draft by the Hartford Whalers, Pronger has enjoyed 17 bone-crushing seasons with Hartford, St. Louis, Edmonton, Anaheim, and Philadelphia.
Overshadowed by his physical presence and leadership qualities, Pronger has a secret weapon that opponents tend to forget about: the fact that he has one of the most dangerous slapshots in the NHL.
The reason Pronger's slapper is so dangerous is because it's not only hard, but accurate! He prefers to shoot low, which creates an abundance of deflection goals and rebounds to frustrate puckstoppers.
His shots have also put many players on the disabled list with a variety of foot injuries. Just ask teammate Jeff Carter, who last April, suffered a fracture during a 4-1 Game Four victory over the New Jersey Devils.
Fans of the Toronto Maple Leafs hope that newly appointed Captain, Dion Phaneuf , and his booming howitzer can lead Toronto to their first Stanley Cup since 1967. Acquired from the Calgary Flames on January 31, 2010, he caused an instant buzz around the Air Canada Centre on February 2, 2010 when he fought Colin White during a 3-0 win over the New Jersey Devils.
According to Phaneuf's Wiki Page , he spent endless hours as a child practicing his shot in his parents' basement, breaking several nets his dad had bought him.
Back in 2008, Roberto Luongo received a headache after Phaneuf rifled one from the point that hit the All-Star goalie square in the mask.
On April 5, 2007, Souray broke the single-season record for power play goals by a defenseman in a single season, surpassing Adrian Aucoin and Denis Potvin , who shared the previous record of 18. He's extremely dangerous on the power play, give him some room to shoot and watch out!
Originally drafted by the New Jersey Devils at 71st overall in 1994, Souray broke an "unofficial" hardest slapshot record during an Edmonton Oilers skills competition with a shot that registered 106.7 MPH. The NHL only recognizes the All-Star Game SuperSkills Competition for the record books, not individual team competitions, but Souray beat the official record held by Zdeno Chara's 105.4 MPH.
In 2010, Weber will begin his reign as Captain of the Nashville Predators after Jason Arnott was traded.
Weber has spent his entire career with the Predators after being selected 49th overall in the 2003 Entry Draft.
He has a history of winning at the international level. In 2005, he won Gold for Canada at the World Junior Championships in Grand Forks. In that tournament, he paired with Dion Phaneuf to form Team Canada's top defensive pair. He was also named to Team Canada in 2007 and 2009 for the World Championships and 2010 for the Olympics in Vancouver.
At the Winter Games, during an 8-2 win over Germany, Weber scored a goal to remember. With Jonathan Toews crashing the net, he blasted one from the point so hard that the puck went through the net!
Let's hope he doesn't put any pucks through any goalies this year.
Chara is a James Norris Memorial Award winner who is also the tallest player to ever suit up in an NHL uniform. His size alone is enough to scare goalies, but add a 105 MPH slapshot and you've got a script for a modern day horror film.
Originally drafted 56th overall in 1996 by the New York Islanders, Chara has also won the hardest shot competition at the 2007, 2008, and 2009 All-Star SuperSkills Competitions.
In 2009, Chara's record-breaking slapshot registered 105.4 MPH, beating the record previously set by former Maple Leaf Al Iafrate. Maybe the NHL should make ugly kryptonite-filled yellow toques mandatory around the league.