Predators' Weber wins hardest shot contest again

Saturday, 01.30.2016 / 10:38 PM
Robby Stanley  - Correspondent

NASHVILLE -- Nashville Predators defenseman Shea Weber won the AMP Energy NHL Hardest Shot for the second consecutive season with a shot of 108.1 mph.

Weber fell short of the 108.5 mph shot he had in 2015 in Columbus, but his 108.1 mph shot was the runaway winner. Weber's first attempt was 105.3 mph. He got a loud ovation from the Nashville fans when his name was announced.

"You want to have fun at those things, and it is fun," Weber said. "We are competitive so you definitely want to get better every year and just keep trying to improve, but if you ask [Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne], I think it'll still be pretty hard."

Weber got a lot of speed on his second attempt toward the puck and generated the power that resulted in the 108.1 mph shot. He said the hometown crowd gave him an adrenaline rush.

"It was a lot of fun," Weber said. "Obviously [there are] some guys with some big shots here. I didn't know what to expect so I definitely had a lot of fun out there. You could tell the crowd was really into it as well. That definitely helped."

Weber used a 130 flex stick for the competition. He usually uses a 122 flex stick in games. For comparison, most defensemen in the League use sticks with a flex from anywhere between 85 and 95. Dallas Stars forward Tyler Seguin said he tried to flex Weber's stick by putting all of his weight on it, and he couldn't move it.

Weber took one more shot at the request of the Nashville crowd after winning the competition, this one was 107.8 mph.

"It was pretty special to get another chance," Weber said. "Obviously the crowd was so loud and the adrenaline was pumping for me. I felt like I let them down and I still shot it 107 or 108. I felt like I let everybody down. It was kind of a funny moment but still pretty special."

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos finished with the second fastest shot at 103.9 mph.

"The guys actually said I won because [Weber] is going to win every year regardless, especially if [Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara] is not here," Stamkos said. "You see his mechanics, you see the size of him, it doesn't surprise us anymore how hard he shoots that thing."

Pacific Division captain John Scott participated in the competition and had shots of 92.6 mph and 95.9 mph.

Montreal Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban attempted four shots during the competition, two of which did not register on the radar. Subban's best attempt was 102.3 mph, which ranked third.

Dustin Byfuglien (Winnipeg Jets) finished fourth (99.6 mph) followed by Evgeni Malkin (Pittsburgh Penguins, 97.0), Scott, Tyler Seguin (Dallas Stars, 95.0), and Aaron Ekblad (Florida Panthers, 93.4)

Chara set the record for the Hardest Shot competition in 2014 with a 108.8 mph slap shot.

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