Souray's hot shot

DEREK VAN DIEST, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:32 AM ET

DENVER -- Sheldon Souray has always had a cannon for a shot.

Yet it wasn't until he got to the NHL that the Edmonton Oilers defenceman really learned how to utilize it.

"I remember Marty Brodeur at my first training camp in New Jersey, stayed out after practice and told me to line up five pucks in front of him at the hash marks," Souray said. "He told me to shoot the five pucks at him. He got down on his knees and spread his arms out.

"I think I hit the net once. Then (co-coach) Jacques Lemaire came up to me and told me that if you don't hit the net, it doesn't matter how hard you shoot the puck. It was a bit of a humiliating experience and I'm glad there weren't more people around to see it, but it stuck with me."

With his goal against St. Louis, Souray became the first Oilers defenceman to register 20 goals in a season since Paul Coffey scored 48 during the 1985-86 campaign. Charlie Huddy scored 20 during the 1982-83 campaign.

"It's a nice accomplishment, but it's just a number, it's not really that important in the grand scheme of things," said Souray, who added his 21st last night. "A lot of personal stuff, I think you look back on when you're done playing. But when you're in it, you look at the situation, especially this year. There are more important things going on with our team right now."

It's the second time in his career Souray has scored at least 20 goals in a season. The native of Elk Point netted 26 two seasons ago as a member of the Montreal Canadiens. Last year Souray had three in an injury-shortened season.

"It's different every year," Souray said. "There are years when guys are snake-bitten, and there are years where everything seems to go in."


Videos

Photos