Sticks: Long or Short, Curved blade or Flat(ter)?

Amen evil king
12-09-2004, 04:27 AM
I've always played with a medium-height stick, with a pretty average curve. Giving it some thought, I think I might try buying a stick that gives me a few extra inches reach, and one with a Kovalchuk-esque curved blade. What length and curve do you guys like?

I know with the extra length dekes close to the body will be a lot harder, but the extra reach would do wonders on the defensive side of things (interceptions/pokechecks), and I think a long stick has its own benefits for dekes too (extra wide reach, and a greater distance between the puck and your body could help in putting the defensemen in two minds).

All I've done is think about this, ie. I haven't tried a longer stick and I'm not sure how much of a difference it'd make. It seems like a good idea to me at least, but I don't have the cash to waste in case it sucks.

Who in the NHL uses longer than average sticks? Martin St. Louis' stick looks taller than he does, but thats understandable.. Off the top of my head I can't think of anyone else who uses overly long sticks. St. Louis isn't exactly bad at stickhandling, and his shot ain't half bad either. Is he overcoming the difficulties of a long stick, or are these difficulties just overstated?

As for the curve, I just want a better wrist shot. I've heard the more curved a stick is, the better the wrist shots are, is this true? What is the downside of having an excessively curved blade, other than the backhand problem?

So what do you guys think? What are the pros/cons of a longer stick and an excessively curved blade? :)

bleedgreen
12-09-2004, 04:52 AM
lie of the pattern can also make a difference in your reach. i find that the bigger curves tend to have more zip on the shot - but you lose a little in stickhandling and backhand. i go to the back hand a lot, so i cant have too big a curve. i think if you play a very specialized position (defensive defensemen, scoring winger who mostly shoots and doesnt carry the puck too much) - you can tailor your pattern to make the most of your chances. if your just the average player who does a little of everything, i think you are better off keeping it simple. basic patterns that work pretty well all around:
modano, tkachuk, gaborik blue, elias red, harrow heel 3/8(?) - all same pattern 5 lie
recchi 5.5 lie
iginla 5.5 lie
havlat sherwood - 6 lie
shanny 6 lie

crazy hooks good for shooting:
lidstrom, tucker 5.5
sakic 5.5
sherwood crosby 5
there's a lot of others, this is just a start
as for length, whatevers comfortable is the best, when you start extend or shorten the length a lot i dont think it really helps and will only throw you off. short is good for dangling and quick shooting - bad for reaching loose pucks and poke checks. long is good for big slaps (i think), long reach, and pokes - but youre more likely to get juked trying to poke all the time. just stay in your comfort range, imo. same with pattern, if you change your pattern to help your shooting, you'll have to carry the puck differently and it will take away some fundamental skills you take for granted. its hard to say who uses really long sticks in the nhl, cuz lie plays such a big role in what "looks" long.

glimradnor
12-09-2004, 10:51 AM
Who in the NHL uses longer than average sticks? Martin St. Louis' stick looks taller than he does, but thats understandable.. Off the top of my head I can't think of anyone else who uses overly long sticks. St. Louis isn't exactly bad at stickhandling, and his shot ain't half bad either. Is he overcoming the difficulties of a long stick, or are these difficulties just overstated?



I remember from his time in Edmonton that Tom Poti uses an absolutly massive stick.

FLYLine24
12-09-2004, 11:56 AM
I use a short stick (up to the buttom of my chin) and a huge curve. I have always had a stick just like that. Any bigger and I cant stickhandle as well and my shot is weaker.

Charge_Seven
12-09-2004, 12:19 PM
I shot both ways, so a flat works best for me.

I always used a right handed curve though, it freaked goalies out when on a break away I'd switch from the right side to hoding it with a reverse curve on the left side. Shots were still decently accurate, and if I cut across the crease while switching normally the goalie had little chance.

John Flyers Fan
12-09-2004, 12:20 PM
I used to use a very short stick, and lately I've lengthened it a bit, but still only medium sizes.

As for curve, I prefer the blade to be almost straight, and then a curve right out at the toe of the blade.

Habsfan 32
12-09-2004, 12:37 PM
I used to like a shorter stick but now i prefer bigger cause i have a better reach and i like the Modano curve.

DaveyCrockett
12-09-2004, 01:30 PM
I tend to prefer sticks that are medium-short. I find if I use anything longer than that I get lazy. I like a Crosby curve but I can pretty much use anything. What is generally considered the best curve for slapshots?

Papadice
12-09-2004, 01:43 PM
GENERALLY speaking, longer stick equals harder shot... Shorter stick equals better hands... so take your pick... I know as a goaltender, I'd much rather my dmen have longer sticks... a) they have a better reach for a pokecheck b) they have a better shot from the point... for my forwards, i'd prefer them to have a short to medium stick... good hands, but still a decent shot...

As for curve, one obvious disadvantage to having a massive curve is a penalty for using an illegal curve :) ... also there's the backhand issue... but having a big curve obviously helps with your stick handling and puck control... not sure what big advantage there is to your shot while using a big curve...

BuppY
12-09-2004, 01:57 PM
umm I use medium size stick right up to my nose, umm for Blade I tend to use Sakic curve, I also use my backhand a lot. I ude my wrist shot a lot, I count on my wrist shot the most.

usmhuskies
12-09-2004, 02:11 PM
Long sstick with a Modano curve...I play D...

PockIsGoD
12-09-2004, 03:46 PM
I use Lecavalier pattern on Vector. I like it, but I look to change for something more classic. Somebody told me the perfect cross between Modano and Sakic curve was Iginla, so i'll give it a try. As for the lenght, i use Easton sr. shaft, i don't cut it and it's perfect for me (I'm 6''0)

DaveyCrockett
12-09-2004, 03:46 PM
GENERALLY speaking, longer stick equals harder shot... Shorter stick equals better hands... so take your pick... I know as a goaltender, I'd much rather my dmen have longer sticks... a) they have a better reach for a pokecheck b) they have a better shot from the point... for my forwards, i'd prefer them to have a short to medium stick... good hands, but still a decent shot...

As for curve, one obvious disadvantage to having a massive curve is a penalty for using an illegal curve :) ... also there's the backhand issue... but having a big curve obviously helps with your stick handling and puck control... not sure what big advantage there is to your shot while using a big curve...
I see. I might try playing a couple games with a longer stick. I'm generally pretty good at keeping my elbow in to make my medium stick appear very short to oncoming forwards. It does a good job at fooling them so I can usually poke check fairly easily.

DisgruntledHawkFan
12-09-2004, 06:04 PM
I'm pretty sure Daze uses a long stick... helps get pucks for his snapshot.

BlackBirRd5
12-09-2004, 10:12 PM
I like my stick pretty much standard length - between my chin and and lower lip off skates.
I use a closed-heel curve blade, fairly consistent for hard, low slap shots for me - right now I'm using a CCM Vector Jiri Fischer pattern in this design..like it so far

Accord
12-09-2004, 11:26 PM
As for the curve, I just want a better wrist shot. I've heard the more curved a stick is, the better the wrist shots are, is this true? What is the downside of having an excessively curved blade, other than the backhand problem?

Deep curves will make it easier to handle the puck and will give you better wrist shots, however your slap shots will be incredibly wild and highly inaccurate.

If you strictly take only wrist shots and want the best stick handling possible, a deep toe curve is for you. Toe curves are great if you're constantly carrying the puck seeing as though it is very easy to do a toe drag with them.

If you're a defensemen constantly taking slappers from the point, a mild depth heel curve will allow you to consistently take hard, low accurate slap shots, however it will be a lot tougher to handle the puck and wrist shots are a lot tougher.

Mid curves are by far the best all around curves, a good balace of stick handling and you'll have the best of both worlds as far as shooting goes.

The length of a stick is entirely personal preference and depends on your position and playing style.

usmhuskies
12-09-2004, 11:42 PM
Deep curves will make it easier to handle the puck and will give you better wrist shots, however your slap shots will be incredibly wild and highly inaccurate.

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While this is true, I use a pretty deep curve on my blade and can still fire a pretty good low slap-shot...It's all in the feel, once you find the right blade it really dosen't matter...

Accord
12-09-2004, 11:46 PM
While this is true, I use a pretty deep curve on my blade and can still fire a pretty good low slap-shot...It's all in the feel, once you find the right blade it really dosen't matter...

If you have a deep heel curve, your slap shots will benefit from it, but a deep mid or toe curve, your slappers will be lacking.

Assuming Lehtonen32 is using a 2 piece shaft, my recommendation to him would be to just buy some various different cheap WOODEN blades and find a pattern that you like, then invest in a more expensive composite/graphite/etc. blade with the same pattern.

usmhuskies
12-10-2004, 02:18 AM
If you have a deep heel curve, your slap shots will benefit from it, but a deep mid or toe curve, your slappers will be lacking.

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Exactly, I use a deep heel curve and I have always had a VERY good shot...

2112
12-10-2004, 11:17 AM
I've used the Lidstrom curve for the past couple years.....and what a curve it is. If any of you haven't tried it, I would recommend trying it sometime, the difference is very noticeable.

bleedgreen
12-10-2004, 11:42 AM
I've used the Lidstrom curve for the past couple years.....and what a curve it is. If any of you haven't tried it, I would recommend trying it sometime, the difference is very noticeable.
i liked the forehand shot - you can really bomb it. but i had absolutley no backhand shot, as well as problems even getting backhand passes off. i also couldnt dangle as well as with a more natural curve. i noticed a couple of people saying their sticks were "short" but went up to their chin or higher. guys i know who use short sticks, its about mid chest high on skates. thats short to me. im 6' 4" and any wood stick that makes it to my chin off skates is as long as they make. i wont go longer than a 4" plug on a shaft (it doesnt feel right any more than that to me), and with a standard easton shaft its still below my chin off skates. innovative makes the novius, and it comes 3 inches longer than standard easton, for tall people out there.

jiggs 10
12-10-2004, 04:50 PM
I use a very short stick (only up to my middle chest) because it's SO much easier to handle the puck. But as I get older, I realize I miss the extra 5 or 6 inches defensively. So I 'm starting to lengthen the stick little by little.

I've always used as big a curve as I can find, because it's easier to stickhandle for me with the big hook. Right now the best I can find (that isn't a local player) is the Coffey curve from Sher-Wood. Backhanders aren't really much trouble, but the extra zip from the large curve is nice. Plus, you can turn the blade over onto the puck to protect it better.

Ladislav Harabin
12-11-2004, 02:56 PM
I use a very long stick. Easton T-Flex with a 6 inches hand plug. I'm 6'1. It arrives just over by nose when I haven't my skates on.

I know that Michael Ryder use a long stick. Benoit Brunet was well known for is very long reach too !

For the curve, I like the Vinny Damphousse or Martin Rucinsky type of blade. Almost straight with a little hook at the toe.

PanthersRule96
12-11-2004, 06:49 PM
I play forward.

I use a long stick for my height. I'm 6'0, and off skates, my stick is up to my eyebrows. I prefer longer sticks though but sometimes, it can get in the way and now it's about to the middle of my nose which is the perfect height.

I really really like the Lindros curve. Iginla is a nice curve too, but I hate the lie. I used to use the Bure curve, but Bauer has several good ones like Hossa, Jokinen (P106), Lindros, etc.....