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Ask the Sharks: Shelley's Answers

by Alison High / San Jose Sharks
There was an overwhelming response for our recent segment of Ask the Sharks for Left Wing Jody Shelley. More than 150 emails were submitted and we went through all of them. Some were informative, some thoughtful and others were downright hilarious.

It's clear that the 32-year-old enforcer has become a fan favorite in San Jose and most of your questions revolved around his fights and George Parros' moustache. Below are the best questions we received and Shelley’s responses to them.

1. Were you always an enforcer while playing hockey? If not, when did you start to develop as one and how did it come about? - Stephan Fransz
Not when I was younger. It wasn’t until I started playing Junior. When I was 18 I went to a major junior camp and I got in a tussle with a guy and actually did well. From then on I was told, ‘you’re a big boy, play big.’ So I just kind of fell into the role and I really enjoy it. I’ve always enjoyed it and I figured it was a way for me to make a team.

San Jose Sharks' Jody Shelley, right, pushes Los Angeles Kings' Drew Doughty, center, into Kings' goalie Jason LaBarbera during the first period of an NHL preseason hockey game Sunday, Oct. 5, 2008, in West Valley City, Utah. (AP Photo/Douglas C. Pizac)
2. After all the fights you have gotten into, who was your toughest opponent once the gloves were dropped? – Amanda Miller
I would say the biggest challenge for me was Bob Probert. He was a guy that I idolized and always thought was one of the meanest men in the game. When I had the opportunity to fight him, I was hesitant. He’s definitely the toughest guy I ever fought. He beat up a lot of guys.

3. Do you train for on-ice fighting (e.g., boxing practice, punching bag on the ice)? - Ian
Yes, that’s something that I definitely do to try and stay sharp. It’s good mentally to get in there. I do boxing drills with a guy once a week in the summer back home.

4. How many times has your nose been broken? - Craig J Wilbanks
I would say – really broken where it’s like floating on my face – three times. Sometimes I don’t really know if it’s broken. I feel it crack. I would say three good ones and three or four little ones.

5. What exactly are you enforcers saying to each other right before you get into a fight? – Abel
You pretty much just make sure that the guy is willing to drop his gloves. Sometimes nothing is said and it’s just that you’re expecting it. Whether it's eye contact, a tap, someone asking you, or someone else saying, ‘hey’ or ‘hey, let’s go’ it’s not really an in-depth conversation. It’s pretty brief and to the point. You get his attention and he knows what you’re asking. You’re not asking him how his day is going or anything.

6. Who would you rather drop the gloves with: Tom Holy or Drew Remenda? – Jeremy Bardet

I’d rather drop them with Drew Remenda.

7. When you stand up for a teammate, do they say thank you or is it just understood they appreciate it without saying anything? – Nolan Torri
It’s funny. I’ve had guys say thank you and it makes me feel a little bit uncomfortable because it’s just what I do. I’d rather it just be an understanding. When I can stick up for someone on a team, that’s where I get my reward. Because my job is to make someone feel comfortable so when someone says thank you it’s like yea, wait a second. You’re not supposed to say thank you because that’s my job.

San Jose Sharks left wing Jody Shelley, top, and Anaheim Ducks right wing George Parros, fight in the first period of an NHL hockey game in Anaheim, Calif., Friday, Oct. 17, 2008. (AP Photo/Mark Avery)
8. Is there a story behind the fights between you and Parros? -Billy Stuart
No. I mean, he’s a big guy with a moustache and long hair that’s a fighter and I’m a big guy that kind of lugs around out there and tries to hit and cause a commotion too. We both do the same thing and then when you go after the wrong guy or get too much attention, you have to stand up for it.

He plays on a team that’s very aggressive; a team that plays big and finishes all their checks. And we do the same thing. So when you get those two in the mix, something’s going to boil over and it’s usually us two going at it with each other.

9. Does Parros' mustache tickle your fists? – Rob Saccuzzo

I can’t say I’ve noticed it. It’s probably a pretty good target, but I don’t think it has.

10. What is a typical day off for you consist of? – Georgie Rodriguez

Usually, every time my wife and I go out for breakfast; maybe take the dog for a walk or a swim. Sometimes we go out and enjoy the sights of the South Bay Area like the beach. Or if it’s a Sunday, I’ll just sit on the couch with my dog watching football and relaxing. Maybe eating, resting or spending time with my pregnant wife.

11. What is your most memorable fight? – Heather Dublin
I fought Bob Probert three times in one game and if there’s a most memorable night, it would be that one. That was awesome.

12. Who was your hero as a kid? – Eddie Smith
I really liked a lot of people, but I guess Wayne Gretzky would be my guy. I grew up in Western Canada, so as far as hockey, it would be Wayne Gretzky.

There you have it. Thank you to all the fans for submitting your questions and thanks to Jody for taking the time to answer them.

Check back on Monday when we announce the next Shark to be featured on our weekly segment of Ask the Sharks.
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