from Adrian Dater of the Denver Post,
The slapper from the side never was a high-percentage shot to begin with; the angle is tougher and the distance is farther. But it used to be players such as Guy Lafleur, Claude Lemieux, Bernie “Boom Boom” Geoffrion, Bobby Hull and many others would score regularly with such shots.
“The D couldn’t get to the shooter like today,” said Scotty Bowman, the NHL’s all-time wins leader. “The game was more spread out, because the D had to back off more. Now, everybody can skate with everybody else. And the forwards backcheck much more. The speed of the game now just makes it so you can’t take that much time to get a shot off.”
When the big windup slapper from the wall does go in, it still gives a jolt of electricity to a team. Philadelphia Flyers coach Peter Laviolette smiled fondly when recalling one of the last times he remembered a player of his scoring on such a shot: a slapper by enforcer Jody Shelley, down the left wing in Atlanta l