Two teams left: the best of the best. We have done quite a few blogs that break down NHL players’ equipment choices. Granted, these players could be wearing mittens, playing with pieces of firewood and skating on shoes with knives taped to the bottom, and still skate circles around us. So, what’s the point of doing these blogs? There are a few reasons. Aside from the players with brand contracts, players generally choose their equipment. So for a player with free or relatively inexpensive gear at their disposal, players have the opportunity to find the best possible gear for them. That said, their gear choice is completely dependent on the players’ preference and therefore rather irrelevant to us. By taking a step back and looking at teams as a whole, we can start to see trends and tendencies of players. When you see many players or a type of player shifting toward one glove, stick, helmet or skate, then we have a statistic worth seeing. Also, it’s interesting to see if NHL players use the same stick that you do.
*Note: Players dressing in any one of the first three games were recorded*
Continue reading Equipment of the 2015 Stanley Cup
Here we are in the middle of the 2015 Stanley Cup playoffs. For some of us it has been a stressful month rooting for your team; while for others it has been simply a relaxing time spent watching hockey played at its finest. Whether or not you still have a vested interest in the outcome of the playoffs, here’s a little something that all hockey players can relate to no matter the playoff situation, hockey sticks.
In the past we’ve done a lot of breakdowns of stick usage depending on the number of goals scored. This time we stepped back and broke it down a little differently. Don’t worry, we’ll still total everything up for you. See? Here you go.
- 55.4% mid-kickpoint sticks
- 44.6% low-kickpoint sticks
Just note that these percentages are for the “top” players in the playoffs right now. By “top” we mean players who have acquired 4 or more points in the course of the 2015 Stanley Cup playoffs.
As the best hockey retailer out there, we often get a lot of questions about which stick you should buy. Way too many times, people assume that they need a certain kind of stick depending on what position they play. While it plays a factor, the real deciding variable is simply the shooting style (for more information about the different kickpoints in hockey sticks, check out this blog). So, we decided to break down the stick usage first by player position, then brand, stick line, and finally kickpoints.
Continue reading Stick Breakdown: Playoff Use by Position and Kickpoint
Last year I wrote a blog about socks, thinking that it was a once per employment blog topic. So here I am nearly a year later, eagerly (actually not sarcasm) about to write another sock blog. The sock that we’re taking a look at is the Swiftwick Cut-Resistant Comp Socks. Swiftwick designs and manufactures socks for a variety of sports ranging from running to skiing. Though you may not have heard of them prior to a few seconds ago, these socks have found their way into all 30 NHL locker rooms. Let’s take a look.
Swiftwick’s Cut-Resistant Socks set themselves apart from the competition by their light weight and low-profile fit. Hockey is already a dangerous sport without thinking about the fact that we are essentially skating with knives on our feet. The highest profile incident ocurred last year when Erik Karlsson took a skate blade to the achilles tendon, severing it for a season-long injury. Of course, there is also the Drew Miller skate-to-the-face incident last week. Swiftwick believes that players should focus on the game rather than sharp objects; also that this additional protection shouldn’t come at the cost of comfort and performance. Some other cut-resistant socks are known to be bulkier and heavier, meaning that there is a little less skate feel and a decrease in comfort. Swiftwick’s socks to an excellent job reducing the bulk for a thinner sock thanks to their HG fibers. Where some socks use Kevlar for cut-resistance, Swiftwick uses their HG fibers in the achilles and tibial tendon areas. You can see it in action here.
Continue reading Swiftwick Hockey Socks
CCM’s next line of protective equipment launches in April and it’s going to see some pretty innovative technology! This is going to pick up where the Reebok KFS protective left off (yes, yet another Reebok line moving to CCM) and moving alongside the CCM RBZ protective. The new line will be the CCM Tacks protective, featuring the CCM Ultra Tacks as the top-of-the-line model for gloves, elbow pads, shin guards, shoulder pads, and ice pants. The biggest feature in the Ultra Tacks lineup is the introduction of D3O® smart foams.
D3O® produces smart foams for many different industries including medicine, law enforcement, and more. So why is it considered a smart foam? Artificial intelligence. Only kidding. That’s still a couple years out.At its normal state, the D30® particles flow freely and absorb low-force impacts. At this stage it’s soft and more or less flexible. Then, when it is hit with a high-energy impact, the particles immediately lock and the foam hardens. Continue reading CCM Ultra Tacks Protective D3O® Smart Foam
It’s February 13th (desperation day, as some call it) and the countdown to Valentine’s day has dropped from days to hours. For those who are still in search of the perfect match, we have a few pickup lines and some Valentine’s Day cards for you to use in the dying hours. Granted, these pickup lines only work on girls or guys who appreciate hockey; but let’s face it, if you he or she doesn’t like hockey, chances are that things may not work out anyways.
**Just a couple disclaimers,
1) Yes, I am also shaking my head as I’m writing this…
2) There were some great, albeit highly inappropriate lines that we left off. In a sport with hockey sticks, scoring, and playing dirty, it’s easy for things to quickly go downhill.
Alright, here we go.
Sorry, Jeff Skinner: she’s still not wearing the Hurricanes jersey you gave her. T-Swizzle is clearly not following the NHL if she’s ok with wearing this jersey out in public. She’s all yours, die hard leafs fans. Also, it would take a few concussions before we started dialing two digit phone numbers.
Continue reading Pick Up Lines – Hockey Style
With the all-star game still fresh on our minds, we sat down and thought about different ways to group the creme de la creme. As the world’s greatest hockey retailer (c’mon, you know it’s true), we have brands constantly on our minds. So… we decided to make a dream team based off of the brands’ athletes; but we wanted to do more with it, so to be more accurate we created a brand fantasy line (C, RW, LW, D, D, G), and will make them a fantasy hockey league of sorts for the remainder of the season. We’ll be using Yahoo fantasy hockey as a basis for stat collecting and player positions.
We recently launched a section on our website that highlights NHL players and the gear they use. Check it out here.
Honestly, it was really hard trying to put these lines together as we had to pass up a lot of superstars. Just a note: we didn’t choose players based on the potential chemistry or how feasible the team could play together. So here are the rosters:
Continue reading Hockey Brands’ Dream Teams
Well the All-Star weekend has come and gone, and there certainly were some moments to remember (insert reminiscing). I’ll forego recapping our favorite moments and skip to the content. Personally, the skills competition is more enjoyable to watch than the game itself, so we decided to break down the gear of the skills winners: Jonathan Drouin, Shea Weber, Patrick Kane, and Ryan Johansen. Honorable mention to the eventual skills champion Team Foligno; though we are not going to break down each player on the team. Team Foligno, we honor you. Moving on…
It was hilarious and awesome to see The Phil beat out Tyler Seguin in the fastest skater competition, but eventually the young speedster, Jonathan Drouin, was crowned as the fastest skater. At first glance, you can see that Drouin is head-to-toe CCM. The jets of choice for the young man are the CCM Tacks Skates. Nicely complementing the skates is the CCM Tacks Stick held by the traditional CCM 4-Roll gloves. To top it off, Drouin protects the brain with the CCM Resistance Helmet.
Continue reading All-Star Skills – What Did the Winners Wear?
Happy new year and welcome to 2015. It’s still early in January, so hopefully your resolutions are still… resolute. Anyways, here we are at the start of the year and we have a lot to look forward to stick-wise. Bauer already kicked us off strong with the pre-sale launch of the new Bauer Vapor 1X Stick, so we thought that it would be awesome to take a quick look at what other sticks 2015 has in store for us. We can’t go into a lot of detail about the timeline of product launches, but let’s take a look the 2015 hockey sticks. We’ve thrown in pictures that the various brands have already released of the equipment.
Bauer Vapor 1X Stick – Available for pre-order now and ships out 2/13. The big technological change comes with the Quick Release Taper which gives shifts the Vapor line to a true low kick point stick. Check out our Bauer 1X Stick blog for more info.
Warrior Dynasty HD1 Stick – The next step in the Warrior Dynasty mid-kick lineup. We had a chance to test the HD1
out on the ice already, and it thoroughly impressed us. Keep an eye out for it. Continue reading New Year’s Sneak Peek: What Sticks to Look for in 2015
While not new to the NHL, Tarasenko is new to the spotlight. Vladimir Tarasenko really burst out of mediocracy in the 2014 – 2015 season, netting 20 goals for the St. Louis Blues thus far. I don’t mean to insult this young man’s first two seasons in the NHL, but this season starts the new chapter for Tarasenko. This young Russian is on his way to superstardom. — Also, being mediocre in the NHL is still an unbelievable accomplishment. — At this point in the season, the 23 year old is tied for second in scoring, tied for fourth in points, and sits in second for the highest +/-. So why is he the player of the day today? Last night (12/16/14), Tarasenko put three biscuits in the basket against the LA Kings for his second hat trick of the season. So, we are going to take a look at some of the weapons and armor that allow him to do what he does best.
Continue reading Gear Breakdown of Vladimir Tarasenko: Player of the Day/Season(?)
Here we are again – a little over a month into the NHL season and we have a new(ish) set of scoring leaders. To go along with those leaders, are their weapons of choice. Once again, IW broke down the scorers into the top 23 goal producers (anyone with 8 goals or more as of 11/18) and took a closer look at the weapons of mass production. Before we start, it’s important to look at the implications. There aren’t any. The back of the net can’t be found based on the stick you use. Give players like Seguin and Stamkos a Mylec street hockey stick and they’ll still be up there on the top 20 list. I will say this… It is nice to look down at your stick and realize that it’s the same one that one of these NHL all stars is using to light the lamp. Or you could pick and choose your favorite all star and go for the stick (or stick line) that they use.
Also, for the sake of simplicity, the sticks are broken down by stick line. There are some players using previous models of sticks, for instance, the Easton Stealth S19, the Bauer Supreme NXG, and the Reebok RibCor. Continue reading Top Scoring Players’ Sticks Thus Far (Fall 2014)