Why Skimping On A Stick And Skates Could Be Costly
By Matt Stathopoulos
When it comes to ice hockey equipment, buying gear from head to toe can be really expensive — especially for skates, sticks, gloves and a helmet.
With a costly list like this, the frugal question becomes: What items of hockey equipment will have the most performance impact?
If you need to stay within a budget, there are two primary pieces of equipment you should consider splurging on for maximum performance enhancement on the ice — stick and skates.
These two pieces of equipment will impact a hockey player’s performance the most for several reasons …
Skates: The best hockey skates have supreme engineering and use the highest-quality materials to keep them lightweight. The lower the price, the heavier the skates. The heavier the skate, the more effort and energy the player needs to exert to gain speed and maneuver on the ice. The best skates can be expensive, but they will enhance your performance. The manufacturers of the best hockey skates used by elite NHL professionals are Bauer, TRUE and CCM. For the latest NHL usage data on hockey skates, click here.
Sticks: Like skates, the best hockey sticks are expensive, costing more than $300. The most highly responsive and lightest sticks are designed and manufactured with high-performance composites and resins that result in the puck “popping” off the blade with greater velocity and accuracy than lower-priced models. Budget sticks use less costly composite and graphite materials that are heavier and less reactive to the player’s intentions. The manufacturers of the best hockey sticks are Bauer, TRUE, Warrior, Sherwood and CCM. For the latest NHL usage data on hockey sticks, click here.
Proof Is In The Puttin’ (The Puck In The Net)
Jack Hughes of the New Jersey Devils had a breakout season in 2022-23 with a team-high 43 goals and 99 points in 78 games. He uses Bauer’s Vapor HyperLite stick and skates, and it is clear to see that his blazing speed and incredible shot set him apart as an elite NHL all-star. The flex on Hughes’ Bauer Vapor Hyperlite stick is customized to his size, strength and preferences. He loves his Bauer Hyperlite sticks so much, he decided to share one with Devils fans.
Vancouver’s Brock Boeser finished last season with 55 points, one oﬀ his career high, while using the CCM Ribcor Trigger 7 stick and CCM JetSpeed FT4 skates. Check out Boeser’s CCM Ribcor Trigger 7 pick the corner against Colorado two seasons ago. He finds his spot, has confidence in his high-quality stick and fires the puck so fast that the goalie reacts late.
Toronto’s Mitch Marner, one of the fastest skaters in the league, also tallied 99 points in 2022-23 — thanks in part to his TRUE SVH skates. Marner uses a TRUE HZRDUS PX stick, which pairs with his incredible vision to put pucks on teammates’ sticks to the tune of 69 assists. He’s part of the Leafs’ penalty kill and is always a threat to score shorthanded, like he did here against the New Jersey Devils. Notice the body control and how quickly he came to a stop in his TRUE SVH skates.
So, if you're looking to spend a little more money on elite hockey equipment to boost your performance, focus on premium skates and a high-end hockey stick. If your dream is to follow the path of Hughes, Boeser or Marner, you will need very advantage you can get in the demanding and competitive sport of ice hockey.