March 05, 2010

Charles Shannon

Often the difference between a career in the NHL and a career in the minor leagues comes down to timing. For Charles Shannon, the timing could not have been much worse.

The big defenseman had already laboured away with 5 years in the minor leagues when he finally got his shot in the NHL in the 1939-40 season with the New York Americans. But he was called up while he was hampered with a bad groin injury, making it difficult for him to make much of an impact. After just four games he was returned to the minor leagues where he would continue to play until 1944. At that time he returned to Ontario where he was stationed for the remained or World War II. He continued to play out the 1944-45 season with Army teams. Upon his discharge he remained in the area, playing senior hockey until 1948.

The fact that Shannon wore glasses while playing, a true rarity, may have scared off many teams. Shannon is believed to have been only the second bespectacled NHL player, after Russ Blinco.

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