Back in 2012, CCM presented us with a radically different stick now known as the RBZ. It was followed by its successor, the RBZ Stage 2 in 2013 and the RBZ SuperFast in 2014 but 2015 is the year of the RBZ SpeedBurner. Each of the first three generations of RBZ have featured a new internal blade design but this year we’ll see the big change in the hosel.
Coming late 2015, we’ll see the debut of the third generation Nexus Stick Line, with the Nexus 1N leading the charge. Players such as Anze Kopitar, Jonathan Toews, Marian Hossa, Dougie Hamilton, Chris Kreider and Brad Richards have been caught with the 1N in their mitts. The Nexus 8000 is one of my current favorites in my rotation, there’s a lot to like about such a well rounded kick point. The Tru-Mid Kick Point, as Bauer calls it, provides a low-kick-like quick release because it doesn’t take much to load it up, but then it still supplies more than enough power when you really need to crank out a hard shot.
After countless years, the signature Pump™ feature will be making its big return home to CCM, meanwhile Reebok’s RibCor Skate Line was sent to CCM in a blockbuster deal just before the trade deadline. It looks like CCM has the “win-now” mentality, aiming to go deep in the postseason. They were looking to add another powerhouse name next to their already stacked lineup; consisting of legendary, veteran presence in the Tacks and the rookie-sensation, JetSpeed skates that will be making their professional debut sooner than later.
Okay all jokes aside, you’re here to read about the CCM RibCor 50K skates. I’ll start with my overall thoughts and impressions after having used them for a few months, while interweaving the tech aspects at the same time.
All sale pitches aside, the Bauer Vapor 1X Skates are Bauer’s most advanced, retail skate to-date. Their 3D lasted Curv® Composite Quarter Packages have always been a cut above the rest because they allow Bauer to form skates that are as anatomically correct as they get. (This essentially means the quarter package is as correctly shaped to fit around an actual foot as closely as possible). Besides how the Curv® material is 3D lasted; it’s just lighter, stronger and more rigid than anyone else’s, so you’re basically getting the ultimate trifecta. But wait, there’s more! *Billy Mays voice*. Let’s start with technology that is totally new, to even Bauer, before we get into technology we’re all familiar with.
Aiming to ring in the new year with a blast, the Bauer Vapor 1X Hockey Stick is making quite the impact in the 2014 World Junior Championship tourny. While we have seen a few key players in the NHL using the next generation Vapor stick, cough cough Patty Kane, it seems like just about every team has at least one player using Bauer’s new 1X stick. And for good reason.
I’ve been using the Vapor 1X for awhile now and I’m still loving it. Like I said in the on-ice review video below, I’ve typically been using CCM and Easton sticks the last couple of months. My ideal stick has a quick, almost “snappy” release with a lively puck feel in the blade and the HTX and RibCor 40K hit those key points for me. To me, Bauer’s haven’t had that lively feel or an overly snappy release; until this Bauer Vapor 1X stick. And now I’m hooked.
It’s been one of the most competitive years in the hockey stick industry, which players everywhere have greatly benefited from. Now the only thing better than having a huge variety of sick twigs available, is being able to pick up your favorite stick in a sweet new color scheme. So today we’ll be taking an individual look at all of the limited edition twigs that are available, plus we’ll touch on a few key features per stick.
Since joining his new team and leaving his old linemate Evgeni Malkin behind, James Neal has thrived at finding the back of the net. While we all know a new stick isn’t going to make an amateur snipe like The Great One, sometimes picking up new pine can be a quick and effective confidence booster. Especially if you find success early and often with the new pick up.
As seen in the picture below, Neal is using the Easton V9E Elite stick, which is just one of the two limited edition Easton Velocity Elite Edition Sticks. The V9E Elite is the flagship LE stick that’s followed by the V9T Elite Stick. Both models showcase the signature elliptical taper that has proven to be one of the quickest releasing twigs on the market. Besides it’s release, I really like the enhanced puck feel it provides, to me it’s a significant difference and improvement from the standard taper that’s found on the V9, V7 and V3 sticks.
The new RPD + Skates just hit the shelves and are look to push Alkali to another strong year of growth and prosperity in the roller hockey game. While the product’s name change is minor, the innovation and update each model features is not. Alkali’s goal with this new line is to improve and elevate on their previous RPD Line, which had been their biggest success in the skate market to date. Today, we’ll be highlighting significant upgrades and key features on their top two price points; the Alkali RPD Max+ ($649.99 for a senior pair) and the Alkali RPD Shift+ ($399.99 for a senior pair).
Bauer is dishing out another round of sweet limited edition twigs, this time coming in the Nexus 8000 and 4000 sticks. As per usual, the Nexus 8000 and 4000 LE Sticks will have the exact same performance features as the originals. This Nexus Family features a Tru-Mid Kick Flex Profile, ideal for the players who are looking for a balance of a lightning quick shot release backed with a lot of power.
Bauer Nexus 8000 Limited Edition Stick
The Nexus 8000 LE features the premier TeXtreme Carbon Fiber that is one of the lightest and strongest of it’s kind on the market today. Bauer reinforced the 8000 LE with eLASTech Resin that keeps it feeling newer, longer. eLASTech also helps to keep microfractures from spreading or growing, greatly increasing the overall durability. The PowerSense Blade Technology is a big upgrade from the previous Nexus 1000. PowerSense provides players with a much more enhanced feel for the puck while also preventing chips from forming on the edges after digging in the corners or given a quick ice-tap celly.
After years of Reebok and CCM running alongside each other as separate brands, Reebok products will begin transitioning to CCM Hockey. The CCM RibCor Stick Line is the first of many product lines that will resurface with the longstanding CCM logo attached to it. So for those who were Reebok-loyalists, it’s time to become a CCM-loyalist. The beauty is that your “brand” conversion will be seamless because it’s literally just a name change, plus I think you’ll be stoked with the new improvements in the newly rebranded CCM gear.
With all of that aside, let’s talk about CCM’s newest family of hockey sticks, the CCM RibCor’s. Leading the charge is the top of the line CCM RibCor 40K Hockey Stick. The main difference between the previous Reebok RibCor and the CCM 40K RibCor is in the Technora® aramid fiber reinforcement.