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The Hockey News

It’s amazing to think there is a level of cool out there even professional athletes can’t hope to achieve.

Of course, the standard is set by a fictional character, but that’s nonetheless saying something.

The latest installment of the James Bond series, Quantum of Solace, opens in theatres this weekend with Daniel Craig, for the second time, picking up the martini glass once held by the likes of Sean Connery, Roger Moore and Pierce Brosnan.

I have to believe anybody who doesn’t collect tons of cash for playing a game would feel real good about a life swap with any NHLer. I know I’d give it a try. But even among that exclusive group of men lucky enough to chase pucks for paychecks, there are only a select few who exude a certain Bond-esque quality.

These are guys who, if you met them in passing and didn’t know their line of work, you’d still walk away thinking, ‘Man, I bet your life is a lot cooler than mine.’

If the league allowed players to wear an extra digit on their back, here are three guys who’d be within their rights asking for 007.

Henrik Lundqvist

In 2006, the New York Rangers goalie was voted one of the most 100 beautiful people in the world by People magazine, a publication I can only assume doesn’t have much overlap in readership with In addition to being an all-world athlete, Lundqvist also used to play guitar in a Swedish cover band called Box Play.

Clearly he’s got his bases covered.

Teemu Selanne

More Euro cool here, though maybe his ‘Finnish Flash’ moniker means he’d be more suited to a movie role as a superhero than a spy.

Scoring 561 career NHL goals might be exciting for some people, but it’s obviously not enough to keep the thrill-seeking Selanne content.

An automobile enthusiast, Selanne once smashed into a car driven by Finnish Hockey Federation president Kalervo Kummola while the Duck was training for a rally car race. All involved walked away and you just know Selanne wouldn’t hesitate to put pedal to metal if he ever got behind the wheel of an Aston Martin.

Sheldon Souray

Depending on how he plays it, his looks can attract pin-up girls or repel threats based on a tough-as-nails glare. Though I would guess his drink of choice is more barley-based than Bond’s, Souray is suave enough to pull it off.

And judging by the Oiler D-man’s bullet shot, I bet he makes the adjustment to firing a pistol with great ease.

Ryan Dixon is a writer and copy editor for The Hockey News magazine, the co-author of the book Hockey's Young Guns and a regular contributor to His blog appears Wednesdays and his column, Top Shelf, appears Fridays.

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