Sticks: What do you use, what do you love/hate, and what's next?
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01-07-2013, 10:24 PM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: St Paul, MN
Picked up the stick, $79 on clearance. Miken Z9 in 65 flex with BP14 curve.
It's not quite as light as the Warrior DT-2 or my old X:60, but it's still fairly light and the balance is good. Shaft shape is a lot like the Vapor, maybe just a hair thicker than the intermediate Vapors, which is good IMO. Grip seems fine, almost like a rubbery finish.
Graphics are a little meh overall, the font and logo looks cheesy and the half-painted blade looks cheap and dated like the old Reebok sticks. But I do think from a distance with white tape on the blade it looks sharp.
Flexes are pretty interesting. I first tried a 70 flex senior and gripped down about 8" and it still flexed a bit. Then grabbed a 90 flex and yeah I couldn't get it to move. So those flexes all seem very accurate and useful.
Of course mine is a 65 flex intermediate and I cut about 4-5" off. Miken says the bottom part of the stick is stiffer and to me it feels like it flexes/kicks in the middle, a lot like a Total One. Very comfortable feeling.
Blade feel is tricky to figure out. It felt more solid and connected than the DT-2 (likely because it's closer to 2-piece construction) but the blade face felt a bit hotter. Curve shape is less forgiving of course. We'll see how it does with pucks.
The BP14 pattern seems like something I will enjoy. I compared it to a P92 and basically it's like you took the same blade, but made it a bit flatter on the bottom from a shooting position so the whole blade is on the ice at once rather than just a bit.
Didn't get much of a chance to shoot with it except some street hockey pucks in my basement, but the pucks were flying dead flat right where I was aiming, rather than the P92 sticks where it was a little unpredictable. Hard to describe, but...when I'm taking a wrist shot, I cup over the blade, then as I'm firing, open it, then snap it closed at the release. With the P92, that results in a lot less blade on the ice while shooting when open. With this one, it seems to maintain contact with the ice. So you feel less like you're losing contact and then snapping the puck and more like you're holding and firing it.
So yeah...first impressions are very positive nearly all around. It seems very much like the kind of stick I'd describe if someone offered to design one for me. I really want to see how it kicks with pucks and how the curve works in game situations.
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