THERE was a time when Danny Meyers wanted to punch Ryan Finnerty’s head clean off his shoulders.
Not for a moment, as he wore his Nottingham Panthers colours, did he ever think he’d owe the snarly opponent a debt of gratitude.
But a few years on Meyers feels grateful to Finnerty for offering him a career lifeline after Panthers dumped him, following six successful seasons there.
Meyers recalls: “We used to have some absolute wars with Sheffield and I can remember a Boxing Day game where I felt some of our players had been bullied.
“The next night I thought ‘enough was enough’ and I stepped up and asked Ryan if he wanted to go, at the Face Off.
“It never got going properly because Rumun Ndur and Brad Cruikshank (two hockey heavyweights) started at each other and that was a fight everybody wanted to watch.
“Maybe it was a sign that we would hook up in the future!”
The former Panther admits he will be happy to play on the same team this year as GB team-mate Jason Hewitt.
“It will make a change not to be slashed by him in every game!”
Meyers picked up just 25 minutes in penalties last season but insists he has felt no ill-effects from a shoulder injury that required surgery this time last year.
“I’d injured my shoulder about five season previously but I wouldn’t rest it, I just wanted to play.
“I missed the first 10 games of the season because I didn’t want to make the mistake of not resting it again,” said the d-man.
“I never missed a game or practice after it was ready to go again. And my range of movement is better than ever.”