Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Hockey Brands That Rock!

Hockey brands of today are becoming less easy to distinguish from one another.  Why would this be true if you still see the big names out there?  The reason is because most hockey equipment is now under one roof.  The names may be the same, but the ownership is not.  Yeah that's right, you thought you were buying CCM skates, but you really are buying Reebok skates.  As Reebok now owns CCM.  It's all under one roof as I said earlier.  Now obviously, for sales purposes, they try and keep the styles seperate.  You'll find a certain type of Reebok skate and a certain type of CCM skate.  Your money though is going to go to the same company.  You think its just  Reebok, think again.  More and more companies have merged or are buying one another out.  Lets take a look at a few of them.

Reebok

I already mentioned Reebok, but lets take a look at their hockey gear lineup a little closer.  Their main priority in roller hockey skates are their pump series.  The 10k is considered their top of the line skate.  Now, they also own CCM.  Take note that they don't have a CCM 10k or pump skate.  They have a different type of hockey skate called the Vector.  They also look much different.

Bauer

Everyone knows about Bauer hockey.  What they might not know is that Bauer has owned the Mission brand for a little while now.  As with Reebok and CCM, Bauer and Mission share two different skate types.  Bauers top of the line roller hockey skate is the Vapor RX:60.  It's a very stiff and expensive skate most likely ranging upwards of $600.  Mission's top of the line skate is the Axiom T9 which is close to Vapor price.  I would like to note that Bauer has actually gone and adopted some of the Mission skate's features on their Vapor series.  I'm not sure if Reebok has done the same for their hockey equipment. 

Friday, December 10, 2010

Hockey Equipment Packages Can Be Good and Bad

Hey everyone I'm going to talk a little bit about hockey equipment packages.  Yeah you read correctly.  We are going to be covering why you both should and should not be on the look out for these so called "deals".  Being that it is the month of December, Christmas is coming up.  What does that mean for hockey players?  well it means that people are going to be looking to buy you some nice hockey gear gifts.  It also means that you probably just got over seeing the whole black friday sales on sports equipment websites.  Am I right?  Of course I am.  How do I know?  I'm a hockey player dummy. I know when and where to buy the latest hockey stuff I've been doing this for over ten years now.

So why exactly are these things good and bad.  Well you know that hockey is an expensive sport and any time you buy alot of equipment, you are probably going to be spending a bunch of money.  If you are like me, you probably aren't super rich and would like to try and get a good deal on some cheap stuff.  Now, I don't know about you, but when I say cheap, I mean cheap in price not in quality.  Unfortunately, there are far too many hockey equipment packages out there that are cheap in quality.  You need to do research and know what you are getting into.  Remember, every single brand out there from a hockey company has different types or levels of hockey gear.

Want an example?  Okay I'll show you one.  Hockey skates are made of different materials.  They are made up of wheels, bearings, and frames.  Now I'm forgetting the boot, but that doesn't matter a whole lot as these three things generally make up the bulk of the price on the skate you choose.  Lets take a skate that has abec 3 bearings, extremely hard outdoor wheels, and a plastic frame.  Now, lets pretend this type of skate comes with a bundle of a wooden hockey stick and plastic/foam shin pads.  Now lets add one more thing to this equation the price.  Lets go ahead and pretend that the price of this equipment package is 380 dollars.  Think, and let that sit in for a minute.

You ready for the next part.  Its a question that should help solve some of our dilema that you should be able to answer.  Is this a good deal?  Someone who doesn't play hockey might think so.  In my opinion, as a hockey player, its not.  Why not?  Well abec 3s are not that expensive.  They are probably the least expensive out of all the abec bearings.  Plastic frames crack easily and aren't meant for advanced players, but rather young beginners to roller hockey.  The hard wheels are usually inexpensive and are meant for outdoor hockey.  Indoor hockey is far more expensive than outdoor and it is what most roller hockey players invest in.

For the quick run down, a good pair of hockey skates range from $170 to $250.  A good stick costs $45 upwards.  Good shin pads cost 30 dollars or more.  So, as you can see, the example price doesn't fit the quality.  Hopefully that will give you a good idea on the good and bad types of hockey equipment packages out there.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Mirrored Hockey Visors In The NHL: Should They Be Allowed?

Ok, I've done a post on hockey cages and shields, but not on certain types of shields.  Visors have become very popular in the sport and in the NHL over the past 10 years or so.  Now, I don't have time to study every player in the NHL, but I don't think anyone currently wears a mirrored visor.  The last person I know of that wore one was Ovechkin and I think he just uses a tinted visor now.  I think there were rumors of goalies complaining about reflective properties of the visors.  What would stop a player from reflecting light back into the goalie's eyes when they are taking a shot?  Do you guys think that they should be allowed in the NHL?  I think if you search for Ovechkin and mirrored visor interviews, he hints at the notion that he may have been told not to wear it because of complaints from high profile goalies. 

What do I think on this whole issue?  I don't know.  Hockey players are very fond of their equipment.  Imagine if someone told you that you couldn't wear certain skates because the bearings were too fast.  That is one argument.  The other side of the coin is that players cannot have certain types of equipment altered to a certain point.  For example.  You are allowed to have a curved blade on your stick, but you can't have an extreme curve or it is considered unfair.  Should this same type of standard be applied to hockey helmets that have a mirrored visor?  That is what people will argue.  Too much reflection is too much of an advantage.  This is what you will hear from the goalies.  The players will talk about how it cuts glare and they should be allowed to wear it for their protection.  I think the common middle ground will be that most players are going to just end up wearing a tinted visor to keep everyone happy.  Every few years, there will be a controversy where hockey equipment is concerned.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Roller Hockey: Bauer Vapor RX 20 First Impressions

Roller hockey is my sport. So, naturally I'm going to talk about roller hockey skates. I've done so in the past regarding Bauer and their hockey skates. This time I'd like to talk about Bauer's Vapor series. I'm going with the RX 20 skate for a couple reasons, I think it is a good buy for the money as well as performance. Initially I was going to get the RX 25, but a couple of things told me that it wasn't meant to be. First off, certain sizes in that skate I found were hard to come by. Secondly, the price is high. Not many people are paid to play professional roller hockey and if they are, they probably aren't paid well enough to be able to buy the most expensive equipment. If you are sponsored like Itan Chavira and companies like Reebok are giving their stuff to you, that's one thing. So what do I like about the RX 20 skate? I'll go in to more detail below.

Skate Boot

The boot on this Bauer skate is pretty stiff. They are stiffer than my old CCMs which didn't surprise me, but how stiff they are did. The outer shell seemed pretty tough. I must remind you that my old skates cost around 300 back when I got them. Technology must have changed and made things and materials a whole lot cheaper now. The tounge is stiff as well. On my first time trying them on I thought it felt like it was digging in to the front of my ankle, but thats partly expected because they have not been broken in. It's also partly because I like to have the tounge strapped extremely tight around the ankle. I know some players like to keep them flopping in front to get more forward flex, but I find that slows my skating speed and control.

Wheels

The wheels it comes with are Labeda Extra Soft Gripper wheels. Are they good? They live up to their name. They really do stick to the surface, but I would've preferred a little bit of a harder wheel. You can tell that you won't be as fast as you can go and thats expected with a soft wheel. it all depends on the time of player you are. I'll probably get a slightly harder wheel in the future. If you like to grip the surface though, these will do the job. What more can you want from a wheel that is 74A?

Bearings

These are ok. Abec 7s. I think the RX25 has Abec 9s. The one up after that come with Swiss bearings. I plan on buying Swiss bearings when these need to be changed out. I think that this will enhance the performance of the skate.

Frame

I love the frame design. From the information I've found, its supposedly taken from Mission now that they are a part of the Bauer hockey company. Think its called Vangaurd. Not entirely sure.

Overall the skate is a good skate for the money and with a few adjustments to the wheels and bearings it could be a great top of the line skate. They still need to be broken in, so we'll see how they adjust with their overall stiffness. I hope you enjoyed this post look and hopefully are looking forward to more of them in the near future regarding hockey equipment.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Easton Hockey A Top Brand

Easton hockey is a top brand as far as hockey equipment companies go. I think one of the most popular types of Easton gear that a player uses is their hockey sticks. Way back in the 90s, I noticed that the majority of the people I had played hockey with all had Easton sticks. Now, their blades may have been different, but the hockey stick shafts were almost always Easton. I think they pioneered the whole aluminum hockey shaft craze that eventually died out. I actually liked aluminum sticks as they were extremely light. I actually guess I caught on early, because even though I liked the feel of aluminum, I always went with a composite shaft. Hockey sticks made of Composite material is all the rage nowadays. It is so much so, that two-piece blade and stick combinations are starting to become less popular. The one piece stick is starting to take over. Hello Easton Synergy. The only down side I see to this is that these sticks cost a helluva lot more. They can range upwards of $100 sometimes even close to 200. Now as far as hockey sticks go, this isn't appealing to me, but you have to roll with the punches.

Why is Easton so great, you ask? If people just like their hockey sticks, can they really be all that good to begin with? Well, they make whole load of other hockey gear as well. Next to the sticks, I would say their second most popular piece of equipment would have to be their hockey gloves. Almost all my fellow hockey players would strive to have leather Easton hockey gloves. Some couldn't afford them, but the leather material was great and protective, even if it was a little more expensive. So sticks and gloves are I believe where Easton has outdone themselves over the years. So what else have they done? Just about everything. There are countless NHL players who wear their protective gear and skates and will vouch for them to the end.

I know what you are asking. How do their hockey skates fair. I can't answer this question unfortunately. As a hockey player, I've never tried them out. I was always too busy with my other favorite brand. I won't metion them here as this post is dedicated soley to Easton. That's not to say that the pros don't wear their skates. They most certainly do. With a little bit of searching, you can probably find the NHL stars that wear them in a short amount of time.

So, do I think they are the best brand in hockey. Well, that's a tough question to answer. I will say that they are the best for some types of equipment. The problem is that hockey players tend to get comfortable with different companies for different equipment. This is not unsual, but it makes it harder to answer a blanket question on who's the best? Quite simply, all the hockey companies out there do their work very well and make quality gear. If they didn't, we as hocke players would be talking about them, now would we. So weather, or not you like their sticks, skates or gloves I can definitely say that I think Easton is a top hockey brand in the sport.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Hockey In College

College Hockey is the place that holds the key to the NHL's future. I know, I know, I forgot to mention that I'm going to take a break from talking about hockey equipment. Sometimes I like to focus on the other aspects of the sport or politics. Now, back on topic about hockey for the educated!

If you think about it, all the best prospects come from the NCAA hockey teams. There is still the Junior Division hockey leagues that have players that will go on to be NHL stars, but the hockey players in college far outweigh them. So, are you bored with the NHL hockey players and teams of the present? I know alot of people are, because hockey has been in a steep decline in its popularity in the United States. I think that this year, I'm going to give a look to the college divisions of hockey. The reason is that i think they are more hungry than the NHL stars that have already made it or hit the big time. The college players are going to be clawing and hustling their way to get into the National Hockey League and this is where the best hockey games come in. In fierce competition, the most exciting games happen. That's why a whole number of people do not watch sports until the playoffs. It makes sense, why get all upset over a team losing or winning if in the end all that really matters is the playoff and championships. I find myself not watching hockey until the Stanley Cup finals all too often. I really wish I wouldn't do that, but as someone who used to play hockey religiously, I'm just not excited with these NHL teams. So, College players, I'll be watching you this winter.

College hockey has always fascinated me for a couple of reasons. Every season, you will see some hotshot player do a trickshot. In pro hockey, you don't see this all too often. Ok, maybe from somebody like Ovechkin, who I must admit is an exciting player. I have said before that I couldn't stand him, but in truth hockey needs more players that stir the pot like he does. I'll have to check which channels run the college games. I know i've seen some NCAA hockey on ESPN sometimes as well as local sports stations. One more good thing about the sport in college is that the players where hockey equipment that protect their face. This means, you won't see as many injuries and because of the rules against fighting. I wanted to see hockey action when I watch a hockey game not boxing. Well, I've had my say on college hockey and the NHL, now all that's left is to sit and wait for the new seasons to start. Happy Hockey season to everyone!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Bauer Hockey Still The King?

Bauer Hockey, is it still the king of hockey equipment companies? I can't say for sure, but I'll weigh in on it. I think they are still doing pretty good. As of late, it really has become a two hockey gear company sport. You have Bauer which is owned by Nike and you have Reebok. Nike is such a huge brand name in sports, that they really don't have to advertise. In fact, I read an article stating that they only try to look cool now, because they are so well known. That's smart. What was even smarter was that Nike had decided to purchase a hockey company like Bauer in the first place. They already had a well established built in userbase and many hockey players gladly crossed over when the two companies had decided to merge. When two sports companies get together and decide to partner up a whole host of possibilities open up. Their technologies can combine to create the ultimate sports equipment. That is why we are at where we are today when it comes to sporting goods. I can safely say that I do believe we have the best and most useful hockey equipment at this point in time. That's only natural. So, Bauer is still doing good because of Nike, but their competition does have a slight upperhand.

Reebok followed Nike's footsteps not too long ago. With their acquistion of CCM, they paved their way to the NHL. The National Hockey League is where you want to be seen if you are a company in the sport of hockey. This is where all the players and fans see the logos and you can bet your bottom dollar that if a company's logo is on a major NHL star, they will sell some of their products to hockey players both young and old. Bauer hockey is still the favorite of many NHL players, but they are not the official equipment.

Bauer hockey makes great hockey skates. I have no problem saying that. I've actually owned a pair back when I first started getting serious in the sport of roller hockey. I'm going to assume that their ice hockey gear is just as good as their gear for inline hockey players. It doesn't take a genius to see that they established themselves very well in the sport. So, even though it is not the official gear in the NHL, Bauer hockey may still be high upon the thrown.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Warrior Hockey - Rising Hockey Gear Company?

Ok, I'm going to talk a little big about a hockey equipment company called Warrior Hockey. I'll get to them in a bit, but first I'm going to tell you how I came to find out about them. Now keep in mind that I have never used any of their equipment. When I played roller hockey regularly, most of the hockey gear I was looking at was from either CCM, Bauer, or Mission hockey. All of those 3 companies have either merged or been bought out by another hockey company. Which is probably what lead me to find this Warrior Hockey equipment company. Believe it or not, I actually frequent these online hockey stores to see what new gear is out. Some of them I have bought from before. I've purchased stuff from Hockey Giant a few years back and had some pretty good service. I also check out places like Hockey Monkey to see what they have in their selection. Most of the time you get pretty similar hockey equipment choices, but every once in a while you'll see things listed on one site that is not on the other. I have found that most of these tend to be size/color related hockey gear that is either in or out of stock.

So, I've talked about the hockey sites I visit to look at what's available. How did I find out about Warrior Hockey? I think I saw them listed in the hockey gloves section of one of online stores. Now, I was browsing the gloves section to look at Reebok and Easton hockey gloves. I actually was looking more at the Easton gloves, because I have a fondness for them. So I am looking at the gloves section and I'm like what is this Warrior stuff? I've never heard of this company before. At this point, I had not been playing for a few years. So, I took a look at the gloves and they were pretty cool looking. Since I liked what I saw, I decided to head over to the official Warrior Hockey website.

First things first. I didn't know what kind of hockey equipment Warrior produced. I was hoping to see a pair of roller hockey skates, because that is my favorite type of hockey gear. To my surprise there were not any listed on the website. From what I saw though, they seemed to specialize in more protective gear. First up I will show what I saw in their hockey stick section.

Warrior Hockey Sticks

Kronik - 420 grams
Dolomite Spyne - 440 grams
Dolomite Double D - 440 grams
AK - 475 grams
Swizzle - 500 grams
Anthem - 525 grams
Bentley - 565 grams

For me, I always went for the lightest stick. Faster players like to stick handle much quicker and this was always a preference of mine as a hockey player. So, If I had to choose a stick just based on weight alone, I would probably go for Warrior Hockey's Kronik hocky stick. They also listed Goalie hockey sticks, but I'll save that one for another post. Besides, I was never a hockey goalie and when I tried, I didn't do too well.

They also sold versions of the sticks above as seperate shafts that you can attach and remove hockey blades. They only had listed Dolomite, AK, and Swizzle as seperate shafts.

Their hockey gloves looked really cool. From what I saw, they looked to all be made of leather, but I can't be 100% positive about that.

Warrior Hockey Gloves

Franchise
AK27 Pro
Bonafide
Bully
AK27
Syko
Eraser pro
Eraser

It seems as though two gloves had both lower end and higher end versions. These you can obviously see are the Eraser and AK27 hockey gloves. This is pretty common in hockey equipment companies. I see it all the time in hockey skates.

Well thats all the equipment that I'm going to talk about for now. They do have more listed and its mostly protective gear. I'll get into that later. I will say this. It looks as though one of the top rising hockey companies in 2010 is Warrior Hockey.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Best Hockey Cage For Inline Hockey Players

I know that I've discussed hockey cages and shields before. What I haven't done is give my take on which ones are good. Basically, if you play roller hockey or inline hockey as some like to call it, then you need to have a cage on your helmet to protect your face. If you are like me, you hate having to see through the wires. There is a fix for that. You can go and buy a hockey shield, but they have their own problems. Now, keep in mind that I've never actually used a hockey shield on my helmet, I've thought about it, but I've never actually put one on there. I've heard about having to invest in defogging spray for the shields. I don't know how true that is, but apparently the breath from the player can fog up the shield and cause vision problems.

Now, some hockey companies claim to have the answer for the whole fogging in the hockey shields problem. They mix a cage and a shield. The bottom part of the mask, is the cage wire. The vision part is the shield. I can't tell you if it works or not, but it seems like it might.

Now, what can I tell you about hockey cages? I used a cooper hockey cage for years. I think it's ok. I don't know why I chose it over an itech one. At the time when I started playing, Itech shields were pretty big, but I just was comfortable with Cooper's cage. Today, I think the same type of cage is made by Nike. That's my take on the best hockey cage for hockey players.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Hockey Equipment Websites, Good Or Bad?

Hockey equipment websites are basically everywhere. I know it, you know it. Pretty much anyone that plays the sport in this day and age knows about a webpage that discusses or sells hockey gear. Yeah, it can be good thing to go and surf these sites. When I was younger, most of these hockey sites were not around. In fact, some of them may even have been small hockey shops in some local city area before they went online and became popular. What do you think is better the small hockey shop or the super sized online version. I personally like visiting these sites and just checking out the latest technology that's available. Who knows, I may even end up purchasing a new pair of skates or a stick if I like what I see. Now, lets get down to the real issues at hand here, because lets face it, hockey guys are opinionated people.

Ok, I know alot of hockey players read this blog. I also have to guess that the majority of them at one point or another probably have ordered their hockey equipment online. Do I know what happened in their experiences? No. I do not. Do I know what could happen or might have happened to them. Yes. Why is that? Well, I'm a roller hockey player myself and I have ordered my inline hockey gear from websites. Keep in mind these hockey websites are probably the top ones out there. I did have good experiences with some and well, others weren't so great. Why is that? It all boils down to the one thing that really stinks about ordering things online. The delivery time. When is your order processed and how long it takes to get to your door step can be the monster headache of all headaches.

This delay keeps the equipment out of your hands when you may need it. It also can be a pain contacting these guys to find out what is going on. So people will tell you why your equipment order is still sitting there or has not been shipped others will ignore your emails. I ordered a pair of skates once that weren't available in my size. The website didn't say they were out of stock. I was told they were when I emailed and complained about it though. Was I mad? Hell yeah I was. I wanted my inline hockey skates when I was promised, not when they decided to tell me they didn't have them after I voiced up about it. I was told, we can either refund your order or you can wait. I said refund it. They emailed back and said, the manufacturer just informed us that your skates are on the way to our store in your size. I told them I still wanted a refund. You see, by that point, I didn't even want to deal with this hockey equipment website anymore. Their reputation to me had been soiled by my first hand experience. If I was going to order more roller hockey skates or some other gear, it would definitely be through another website.

The thing I learned here is that you should only deal with websites that your ordered from before and were satisfied with. This new website had these hockey skates for cheap. Cheapest is not always the best option when it comes to buying expensive hockey gear. Buying cheap sometimes means you will get cheap service, which is not the type of service a die hard hockey player will want. I've ordered things from helmets and pants, to skates online. The helmet was the best experience. The pants on the other hand, weren't too bad, but I learned some things.



When ordering a hockey helmet, you need to know if you are a small, medium or large. Most hockey equipment websites will have some kind of sizing chart that you can go by. Just measure your own head with a tape measure and you will be good to go. Most helmets allow you to adjust your fit slightly by loosening the screws and then repositioning parts of the helmet. Keep in mind, if you buy a one piece helmet, you most likely will not be able to do this.

The hockey pants I ordered were too big. I didn't size them right, that means I had them sent all the way back and reordered them. That my friends, is a pain in the ass. If you have a hockey game, you want your hockey equipment when you need it. You don't want the delays and sometimes these things happen when you order online. So all in all it took 2-3 weeks just to get the right pair of hockey pants. If you have to know, they were mission hockey pants. I'll also take the opportunity to tell you that they were very good and I still have them to this day.

Now, I already told you I had an issue ordering some hockey skates from a hockey equipment website. These were a pair of Bauer Vapor skates. This site had what I thought would be the best hockey skates for the best price. It turns out they didn't have the size, but that I would eventually get it. This is not good service. I mean if you are going to buy a hockey equipment drying rack or something, that can wait. It is not essential for you to play the sport, but having a pair of skates that a player needs to play with be backordered and not tell them is a big no no in my eyes. I would say never order the skates if you really need them quickly. Instead, head on down to a local store and look for a pair there. If you do have some time to kill, like a week or two before a game, then maybe you can order some hockey skates online from a website. Just don't skip the sizing at your local store. That is important. Its no use receiving hockey skates that don't fit correctly.

The question is how do you find a good website that sells hockey gear? You can of course use the search engines on the internet. You will probably find dozens of places that are selling hockey gear. I would look for the ones that have a voting system to see weather or not their customers were satisfied. Happy past customers usually makes for happy future customers. Atleast, I think it does. I would stay away from drop shippers. I would not go with a hockey equipment seller who drop ships, because it could take more time. They don't actually have the gear, they have to order it after it was ordered from them. That doesn't sound very time friendly to a hockey player now does it?

So, basically it all comes down to who you order from. If you saw a couple posts back, I was wondering weather or not I would go with buying a pair of hockey skates. I was impressed by the current state of Reebok hockey skates, but my favorite skate in the past was Bauer. How did I choose? Well, I introduced a combination of reading reviews online and my gut instinct on my past experiences. The same can be said for ordering your gear from an online hockey shop. You just really need to research. You'll eventually be comfortable enough to make your own decision regarding who to order from.



Hockey Players need their equipment. You just need to make sure that if you order from a hockey equipment website, that it is a respectable one.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Roller Hockey Equipment For Kids

To any of you hockey players out there that have young ones, or any parent that has a child that might want to play the sport of inline hockey, then pay attention to the next few sentences. I honestly believe that if a young child is starting off in the sport of roller hockey, then they probably do not need the best hockey equipment. Why is that? Well, kids can't be on the next level when they start off. How fast can a kid move? How fast can a child hockey player really skate? They aren't going to be on a high school hockey level or college level. Its just not possible.

Some kids are good for their age though. This is why it is important to get them real hockey equipment. Not the recreational hockey gear that is sold for cheap. Take for example a nice pair of hockey skates. The best hockey skates that you can get for a kid is probably a pair that have abec 3's. I don't see any reason to go out and buy the an extremely expensive pair of Reebok hockey skates that have abec 5 or higher. Why do you ask? The reason is a simple and logical answer. A kid hockey player will never be able to fully utilize the the power of such a pair of skates. A teen player maybe, a college player definitely, but a child? I don't think so.

Does this mean that you should go out and buy crap for your kid? No, getting good gear can help slowly help elevate their game in the sport of hockey. They will improve and adapt and then will be ready for upgrades once that gear is worn out. Remember, roller hockey is expensive and it just keeps getting more and more expensive as you get older and become more advanced in your hockey skills. There's no need to spend a huge amount of money on equipment this early in a young hockey player's career.

Is kids equipment different from an adult hockey players? Yeah, they usually call it junior hockey gear. If you go to the online hockey gear websites, you will find them selling junior sticks and junior helps and such. These aren't really that different in material as they are in size. Although I must mention one thing that you may see differently in a child hockey player's skates. Some hockey equipment companies have their junior hockey skates come with one wheel less than their adult sizes. That means you will get only 3 wheels on a hockey skate rather than the standard four. This is basically just a foot sizing issue. They don't need four because the foot is only the size of the 3 wheels together. Can this be a good thing for a young hockey player? Yes, and it's good for the parents too. Why is that? Because you don't have to pay extra money for more bearings and more wheels that's 2 less hockey wheels you have to spend money on. Don't take this time for granted though as your kid most likely will grow out of it quickly and then you'll have to buy all new roller hockey equipment.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Hockey Season Is Almost Over, Give Your Hockey Gear A Rest

That's right your hockey gear will make you sick in this weather. Its starting to heat up and summer time and hockey are not good bed fellows. Maybe you can find some hockey sales in the summer season, who knows? Clearance equipment is a plus side of the summer, but you can always get that on black friday anyway. Getting those best hockey skates can hold off until then.

By the way, I'm not talking about ice hockey. If you can play hockey in the summer time, the place must have an expensive air conditioning bill. I'm talking about playing street hockey. Yeah, its fun to play pickup games and choose teams, but make no mistake. You can get dehydrated playing hockey in the summer. Your hockey gear will make you overheat in about 10-20 minutes of playing. This will especially happen if the sun is beating down on you. Hockey equipment is heavy and unforgiving. Your body will not be able to breathe.

I played hockey in the summer time on many occassions. I played in 90 degeree weather and nearly vomitted. It wasn't fun thing to have happen to me. Yeah, I love roller hockey. If you love it too, you know that it can be hard to sit back when you could be out there scoring goals. Who wants to wear hot hockey skates anyways. Do you know how bad your feet will burn. Especially after skating hard? It's not worth it.

Just remember, everyone likes to play sports. Some sports cannot and should not be played in certain seasons. Outdoor roller hockey is one of them. Now don't be mistaken, if you find a good indoor hockey league, be my guest and join. You will be paying alot, but you won't get sick. So, give that hockey gear a break and wait until September rolls around.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Are The Best Hockey Skates Reebok or Bauer ?

Okay, as the time begins to wind down I'm drawing closer and closer to my decision to buy my new hockey gear, I'm left with a puzzle. Do I go with the brand I've always trusted, Bauer? Or do I go with the new and latest technology of the current "it" hockey company? If you don't know, the "it" company I'm referring to, it's Reebok. Reebok is currently on top and probably gets the most exposure due to their status in the NHL. The thing is, I've been out of hockey for awhile. I haven't played in years. I don't know what the current hockey players think of the gear. I'm willing to bet if I went down and checked out an indoor hockey league, I would probably find everyone wearing Reebok skates. I'm guessing the older players would be using Bauer, but I can't be too sure. My initial instinct was to just go and get a pair of Bauer Vapors. Now, I have to admit I'm wavering between the two.

I'm interested in hearing from other hockey players. If anyone has any opinions on hockey equipment, please let me know. I am particularly interested in roller/inline hockey stuff. Also if anyone knows what inline hockey stores online carry the best deals, let me know, I'll be sure to check them out. I don't mind buying a pair of year old clearance skates for a discount if I have to.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Easton Hockey Equipment

I've gone through buying and using alot of hockey equipment in my day. Back when I was younger, I would go to CCM or Bauer for my skates. Easton also offered skates, but I never thought they were that good. Obviously times have changed alot since then. I've gone to some hockey store websites and noticed that they look like they are better built. Are Easton hockey skates better now? If someone out there can answer that for me, please do so. The Easton Stealth and Easton Synergy skates look pretty cool. The designs are really slick. I would like to try them out.

I'm not saying Easton is a bad company or anything. They aren't, they are a very reputable hockey equipment manufacturer. I just never bought their skates. I almost always exclusively bought their hockey sticks and their hockey gloves. When I was growing up, having a pair of Easton hockey gloves meant you were a real hockey player. They were also expensive back then.

So, what do more hockey players use Easton skates nowadays? I know I've had a relative buy a really expensive pair of Easton ice hockey skates. That's when I started to think about it more and more. Maybe they have upped their game in the hockey skate arena. If you have any opinions on your Easton hockey equipment, let me know.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Hockey Monkey and The Zambonis

Hey what's up. Once again, I'd like to take time out to talk about something other than hockey equipment. I know that most of my readers are composed of people looking for opinions or articles on hockey gear, but I'm going to tell you about something else hockey related. That's the great thing about this blog, almost everyone who reads it, is in to the sport of hockey. So what's this hockey related thing I'm going to talk about? It's actually a band called "The Zambonis", you know, named after that giant machine that smoothes the ice out in between periods in NHL games? Of course you do. Anyways, they are quite a unique bunch.

Hockey Monkey

This is the title of one of their songs. In fact, it's my favorite track that they have. I'm willing to bet its most of their fans favorite as well. It's very catchy and family friendly. It's got the band wearing hockey helmets, animation, and a monkey that plays hockey on a frozen pond. What more could a hockey fan want? So go check out the hockey monkey first before you do any other song. If you are a fan of the sport you won't be disappointed.

I've embedded the video here below so you can check out the hockey monkey in all his glory!



The Zambonis

I first found them searching for hockey related stuff and I wasn't even looking for a band. I must say, it was a cool find. If you want more information on them, you can also check out The Zambonis Facebook Page. It has tons of pictures of them with NHL players/veterans, hockey celebrities(The Hanson Brothers from Slapshot), and information on upcoming events. Also, be sure to check out their song Smashmouth Hockey, the video is full of some cool NHL hits/fights.

In closing, the band rocks. They have a cult following that is probably growing larger by the minute. I imagine every new hockey season, the fresh fans come pouring in. I'm definitely one of them. So if your tired of the cookie cutter junk that's found mostly on the radio and you want to see a band that dons hockey equipment in their live gigs and videos check out The Zambonis.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

RBK 11k Skates Any Good?

I've mentioned that I plan on buying some new hockey equipment soon. I'm not entirely positive, but I may have mentioned that I plan on buying the skates first. So yeah, it's official. The hockey skates are what I will be having as my priority in this venture. I'm looking at the RBK 11k. I've always considered myself a very fast skater and I thrive on breakaways as my main scoring opportunity. I used to get a whole lot of breakaways in games.

Now before I get to Reebok's hockey skates and why I am asking this question, I'm going to talk a little bit about my playing abilities. Like I said breakaways were my main thing. I would get so many a game, I would lose count. I used to think this was good and that it meant I was one of the better players in the leagues that I played in. Now I'm starting to question it. Alot of it has to do with certain sports athletes I've been seeing in the news/press lately. These guys were stars at one point. They would score and outspeed everyone with their talent. Some even wore some Reebok gear themselves and we aren't just talking about Reebok's hockey gear here. The point is, they are older and their speed and youth is gone. They can no longer get as many scoring opportunities and their points have suffered greatly as a result. Does that mean they weren't really that good of players to begin with.

Some people have natural ability that helps them win. Others have game smarts and other game skills. Is someone who relies on speed and quickness to score a good player. There are people out there that rely on shot accuracy, stick handling etc.. If you get older and all of a sudden your scoring starts to drop drastically because you are no longer fast, were you ever really any good of a player? That is a question that I am dealing with as of late. I am hoping I still have my speed and I am hoping RBK 11k hockey skates will give me a boost if I've lost a little bit of it.

If not, I'll have to start practicing on other abilities such as passing, and shot accuracy. I used to just work on fancy stuff. You know, the finesse hockey abilities. I loved working on stick handling and my quick skating moves, but now they might not cut it. My slapshot has always been fairly week unless it was close range and from an odd angle. My wrist shots weren't always that great and my accuracy, while great at times, wasn't the best it could have been. Should I be focusing on trying to buy the best hockey skates? Should my focus be somewhere else other than getting RBK 11k hockey skates?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Hockey Equipment I Plan To Buy Online

Hockey equipment that is online can usually be bought for less than actually going into a store and purchasing it. There are way too many other sports websites out there that give out coupons. Not only that, but there are also entire coupon sites that may have them as well. Trust me when I tell you that getting the right gear for the right price is definitely worth it. I'm all for what will improve a player's ability in the sport. Why should you go the online route? Well for all the reasons I've stated above of course. Besides, would you rather sit in the comfort of your own home and look at all the selections possible for your hockey needs, or travel all the way to your sporting goods shop to find out that they only have a fraction of the choices available. I don't know about you, but I would plan on going the online route for all of those reasons. Did I mention you don't have to move? Don't get me wrong, some people actually like traveling from store to store to have to find the equipment they are looking for, not me though. With that said, I'll get on with the rest of my latest hockey rant.

Ok, this post is going to be a long one. A real long one. How long can I talk about hockey equipment and the sport? Here's a hint. Very long. I can talk about it till the worst player in the history of the NHL recieves his first hat trick. Speaking of the NHL, well not the NHL, but the players in the NHL who played for the Olympics, how about Team Canada beating Team USA. I'm all for the USA hockey team, but congratulations to Canada for the gold. There's not a better way to do it either. They won in their hometown at the sport they invented. They needed the gold on that one. I'm going to have to look up what equipment and gear Team Canada's hockey team were sponsored by. Did it play a role in their success? I'm not sure, it may have just been that they had stellar players. Now, Before I start talking about want I want to buy online at a hockey store, I want to talk about the NHL itself and some recent commentary I heard on the radio.

I was listening to some sports radio the other day and the show's host was in a discussion with a hockey fan who called in. They both wanted to ditch the fighting aspect of the NHL. They hated seeing the big dumb guys drop their gloves and hockey gear and go at it. They felt it ruined the pace of the sport of hockey and that in the Olympics, the games were much more exciting, because of the lack of fighting. They wanted to kick fighting out of the sport. The only reason they think the NHL even allows it, because some of the fans wouldn't go to games unless they might see a fight. I kind of agree with them, but If they were to ban fighting all together I might miss it. I myself as a hockey player am more into the hockey equipment and the affect it has on my performance than going in there at taking another player out. My main focus is always the goal and my second focus is my actual hockey gear itself. I just that I would let you know how I felt on that topic, because it is an interesting one to touch on. Now that I've got that out of the way, on to my title post.

I plan on buying some hockey equipment real soon. I also plan on purchasing it from an online store. I'm leaning in one direction right now, I will not say which store it is at the moment. I'll wait until after I bought my gear to let you know if it was a good experience or not. Lord knows I've had some bad experiences with online hockey stores. This time, I know who not to buy from. I also plan on walking into a regular sports retail store and seeing if I can get it the gear cheaper there than online. Sometimes it happens. The problem with online store coupons is that they expire and you won't know if some work until after you have added everything into your shopping cart. That's not the only reason I'll be visiting my local sports shop. I also wish to try out my equipment first to see if it fits. There's nothing worse than having something shipped to you to learn you have to ship it all the way back if it doesn't fit right. I've had this happen with a pair of hockey pants. I won't make the same mistake again on that issue.

So what equipment do I need? Well it's more like what equipment do I want, but I'll go through a list of each and what I'll probably get. I'm happy with my Mission hockey shin pads, so I won't be getting new ones of those. I don't plan on buying any elbow pads either. I have a pair of Jofa ones. I have a Mission Carbon hockey helmet, but I plan to switch it up a bit. I am thinking about getting a Bauer 4500 helmet. I'll probably go for the color red. No reason other than I've pretty much used white hockey helmets my whole life and I am bored with the color. I also want to get a black cage to protect my face, but I also plan modifying. Yeah, sometimes I like my own custom hockey gear. I may cut out some of the wires and replace them with a shield of my liking. I know they sell shield and cage combos, but they aren't what I am looking for. So I figure I'll just make my own gear. I've always been a fan of Bauer helmets, ever since they bought Cooper. My oldest hockey helmet is an old white Cooper one. So yeah, the 4500 helmet that they are selling now brings back memories. The design is similar, but a little updated atleast in my opinion.

I do like my Mission hockey pants, but if I decide to get new ones, I probably won't go with them again. I've been looking at a few pairs and the only ones that have caught my eye are the ones made by Hyper. The Hyper Pro hockey pants look awsome. They are also reversible too. You can turn them inside out and they change from home to away colors. It's actually a pretty cool idea. I'd like to see some jerseys designed like that. On second thought I do see a pair of Mission hockey pants as I sit here and type this that I think look really cool. They are the Mission Boss hockey pants and they aren't too expensive either. They are rather cheap compared to the Hyper pants. They are also on clearance. This will be a tough decision and will probably come down to the price.

Now on to one of the lesser pieces of gear that I tend to care about. Don't get me wrong, hockey gloves are important. I need to have them. I just don't go crazy with purchasing the most expensive gloves on the market. As long as they fit and are comfortable, then they're good with me. I am curious about buying some leather hockey gloves. I am looking for a light weight pair with good protection. I'm currently looking at some pro stock gloves, but I'm not so sure about the price. Easton stealth doesn't look like such a bad choice either. I like the
RBK Pro Stock 9K gloves too. It seems I may put more thought into the gloves this time than I have in my previous hockey equipment choices.

I think the last thing on my hockey equipment list would be my skates. I'm going to try and find the best hockey skates I possibly can for the best price. To me, it's the most important piece of gear I'll be buying. I want them to be light. I want the skates to be fast and I want them to be tough. I like my skate boots to fit tight and because of that I'm going to go with either Bauer or Reebok Hockey skates. I like the way Bauer's skates in general fit. I'm currently looking at the Bauer Vapor RX 25 skates. They aren't too expensive and they come with abec 9 bearings. The Labeda wheels look good too, so I won't have to replace them right out of the box. On the Reebok side of skates, I'm looking at the RBK 9k crimson shadow pump skates. I like the idea of being able to make my skates tighter just by utilizing the pump. I'll have to try it on in a store first to see how I like the fit.

That's pretty much it. So now you have the run down on what I plan to get. I enjoy all aspects of hockey, but first and foremost, I am an offensive player. This is basically what I make all my decisions on when I decide to shop for hockey stuff. Defensive hockey players may differ in their opinion on what is important for them. I also know goalies would have a different set of choices for everything, because their equipment is different. I'm not sure if anyone agrees with my choices of product for hockey, or the reasons I choose them. I would be interested in hearing anyone's thoughts on it though. Just drop me a line if you ever want to let me know about any hockey equipment.

Hockey Equipment Drying Rack?

I started playing hockey a long time ago. Or atleast what seems like a long time ago. Recently I came across something that I think you would only find in a recreation center and that is a hockey equipment drying rack. Why would a player buy this? I mean your everyday average hockey player. More over where would they put it? In their garage? I love the sport of hockey. I enjoy playing it. Well, I should say that I really enjoy roller or inline hockey, but you get the idea. Do I really need a hockey equipment drying rack? I understand that yeah, hockey equipment get can smelly or really stinky. Would this even help out with that this much? I just don't know. I don't know if it's worth it to have it take up the space it does in a room or a house. It also makes it look like a hockey player is standing around whereever it is going to go.

I can understand if you are a goalie and you want to air out your goalie pads. Goalies probably get way hotter than offensive or defensive players. Their pads are also larger and heavier. Yeah all that's true. Goalies may need it more, but there still is the problem of having it take up all that room. It's easier to put your hockey gear in a bag and pack it away isn't it? I mean having a goalie standing their in your living room 24/7 would be kind of annoying. I think it'd be interesting to poll a group of hockey players and ask how many actually have their own drying rack. I'll bet its only the ones that take it very seriously. I'd be willing to bet that it would be mostly college and highschool students on varsity teams that will end up being the owners of their own drying racks.

If you are on a team and plan on going to the NHL or college hockey and that is your top priority, I might see the reason why you would want something like that. Some players of sports take things very seriously. That's cool, that is why those players are usually the cream of the crop. It's why they are the top goal scorers and point earners in their respective leagues. Then you have the hockey freaks, that just have to have everything there is out their for bragging rights. You know, the type that would tell you that they actually bought one, even though they aren't the greatest player out there. These players usually buy every piece of hockey equipment they can to try and prove they are a good hockey player. The problem is you can't buy your way into being good at a sport. You have to work at it and practice your hockey drills.

I'm not trying to make fun of or downplay the usefulness of something that many players might find essential for their hockey equipment. I'm just saying for me, that it is a little too much. I don't even know how much they cost, but I'd rather spend my money on the actual hockey gear itself than an apparatus that I hang it on. So, I've come to the conclusion while writing this that as a hockey player a hockey equipment drying rack really is not for me.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

What Are The Best Hockey Skates?

What are the best hockey skates? How do you find them? I've written about this before. Yeah, you can sort through all the old posts if you want to. Or you can just read this current updated take on it. Whichever you wish to use as your source for hockey equipment reading entertainment is fine with me. As you may or may not know, I do play hockey. Yes, I consider myself a hockey player and a good one at that. What type of player am I? Well, I value my speed. I'm an offensive minded hockey guy. So it is only natural that I value my inline hockey skates. I should've mentioned that shouldn't I? I'm not an ice hockey player. So, I don't know too much about ice hockey equipment. I can however tell you about the roller hockey equipment that I've had experience with. Do I consider myself an expert on this subject. I don't know. Everyone who plays hockey has their own style. So what works for one person may not necessarily work for the other. Every player's focus on hockey equipment is different. Some want the best protection and pads possible. Some players are afraid of getting their shins hurt so they focus on their shin pads. Other players care more about their hands so they are very concerned about their hockey gloves. I can officially say that one of the most important pieces of hockey equipment in my arsenal are my hockey skates. So, you better believe that I am going to be looking for the best hockey skates imaginable. I'm not going to go into the whole manufacturer debate, because frankly, I don't know who is the best today. I'll have to look into a new pair of skates soon, but until then I'll talk about the search for finding the best skates instead and how you might accomplish your goals in that area of choosing your hockey gear.

Hockey Skate Fit

Yes, It is so important. Why? Your skate will go where your foot goes. You don't want your feet moving around in side the boot of your skate while you are playing hockey. You can seriously damage your foot. You'll have helluva time controlling and balancing yourself too. I myself like to make sure my skates are tight when I'm playing hockey. This helps me control myself and my speed with easy. It helps to be able to control your car right? Same thing with hockey skates. You don't want unresponsive steering. Hockey players need full control in such a fast paced sport.

Hockey Skate Bearings

Ah yes, the skate bearings. This is often an overlooked piece of the hockey equipment puzzle. Why is that? Well, when you first buy a pair of skates you can't see the bearings. They are inside the wheels. Most novice roller hockey players will not even bother to read the box to see what kind of bearings they are getting. They won't care weather they are abec 3, abec 5, abec 7, or abec 9. Hell, they won't even care if it's an abec brand of bearings or bones swiss bearings. I for one do. It's very important to me. Bearings help with the smoothness of skating and they also help with the speed. I have preached this many times before, but you don't want your bearings rattling. If they rattle, get new skate bearings quick. Trust me, you'll end up being a far better hockey player because of it.

So which is the better bearing? Swiss or Abec? I don't know. I've heard Swiss are faster. I've only used Abec bearings however. I've also used them with good results.

The conclusion here is testing. Read the above, purchase your skate and don't overlook the bearings or the fit. You'll decide which hockey equipment is best for you.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Subject Of Hockey Equipment

The title of this post is just going to be called hockey equipment and it will also be the subject. Why is that? It's the main point that I want and like to talk about. I know I've been putting off the old hockey gear posts that I swear I plan on doing. I keep on saying that they will have the pictures of all my hockey stuff that I have in my possession at the moment. All of it is old hockey equipment. I've given my opinions on the brands that I liked the most. Weather those brands are still good, I don't know. I can only say which ones look good to me just by the features they have. So, what could I possibly have to say about hockey now? Well, I'm not going to talk about the NHL, because frankly it is just not interesting to me at the moment. Why are hockey players who play professionally not interesting? Well, the pro players in the NHL who play the sport aren't nearly as good as the guys I've seen growing up. I'm talking about Wayne Gretzky(I hated his roller hockey skates), Mario Lemieux, Eric Lindros, Jaromir Jagr, Sergei Fedorov and the like. Do today's NHL hockey players stack up against those guys. Not in my eyes. Why is that? They just don't have that extra oomph it takes to make them interesting. You've got guys that score a few goals on the net and then they want big endorsement deals to sell their own line of hockey equipment and they don't push it any further.

It's no secret that I've had a bit of experience using hockey helmets. I've already written a post on hockey helmet reviews. If you read that, it talks about a lovely piece of a equipment called the Mission Carbon Helmet. That was the best hockey helmet I've used. It was streamlined and lightweight. It also offered me very good protection, perhaps the best protection a helmet in a sport like hockey could offer. My Cooper helmet was alright, it was also lightweight, but very tight on my head. I think Bauer still uses that old cooper design on some of it's helmets. I like Bauer, because they are a hockey equipment company that offers variety in their designs. With some hockey stuff, you only get a certain kind of gear and that's it.

Again to reiterate some previous posts, if you want a good pair of roller hockey pants I'd go with Black Biscuit. They make very good inline hockey pants that are tough and durable. I should point out that I currently own reebok hockey pants. Reebok's roller hockey gear is good, but I feel that their pants are just a tad too heavy. If you rely on speed like me, you want something as tough and lightweight as possible. There's only so many times I can say why I like certain equipment, but I'm trying to stress the importance of speed in the sport of hockey. It, for me, is the number one deciding condition on how good or bad a player can be. I should note that faster players risk more damage to their equipment when they eventually go down and trust me, if you are a hockey player, you will at some point hit the floor.

Now that I've made my point on the pants, I'll move on to the gloves. Hockey gloves should be comfortable and not weigh your hands down. I like my gloves to be lightweight. I've preferred Jofa gloves in the past. I'd also recommend that if you play indoor hockey, or roller hockey in hotter weather, you should look for gloves with air cooling holes in them. I had those and they helped out alot. My hands would not get as sweaty with them on.

Should I choose a hockey cage or a hockey visor? Trust me, in hockey vision is important. When my eyes started getting bad, my hockey playing drastically took a nose dive. If you can't see, you can't accept passes from teammates or shoot accurately from far away. I've always used a cage in conjunction with my hockey helmets, but a visor seems like a good piece of equipment to invest in. The next time I play hockey, I'm planning on experimenting with a mirrored hockey visor and cage. I may end up cutting the wires on the cage itself to make it fit. Who knows, but next time I'm playing the sport, I'll be doing some experimenting.

I've been thinking about buying a pair of reebok hockey's RBK skates. The ones with the RBK Pump to be more specific. I always like my skates to have a tight comfortable fit. That is part of how I get the most control and speed out of my best hockey skates. Bauer has made my favorite pair of skates that I've had to date, but there's no harm in trying out other hockey equipment companies. The next hockey jersey I get will definitely be a reebok one.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Hockey Equipment And the Sport Itself

I've been very busy with work, so the roller hockey equipment posts are going to have wait it off a bit more. That and the fact that my digital camera is busted. I wanted to take pictures of my old gear so that everyone could check out my skates, helmets, sticks and pads that I've had for close to ten years or more. It is definitely time to upgrade though. The next time a play a game of roller hockey, i'll have new inline skates, pants etc... It'll happen, I just don't know how soon. I still wish hockey was as popular as it used to be, but every sport has its ups and downs. Hell, I haven't even had time to play it.

Why Has Hockey's Popularity Faded?

With me personally I've always liked to play the sport rather than just watch it. It didn't matter if my favorite team was in the playoffs. I always felt, why should I watch someone else have fun playing hockey and me have to sit there at my TV. I myself am guilty of not paying attention to the sport as of late. For awhile I didn't even know that Reebok Hockey was the official equipment of the NHL. There are some reasons that I myself have fallen out of the hockey loop. I can't speak for everyone, but I can speak for me, so here it goes.

I like playing in indoor roller hockey leagues. Outdoor hockey is good too, but I prefer indoor. Usually more care is taken in those leagues, because they have to keep up with maintaining the indoor sport courts. In my opinion this is where the problems lie. These leagues have gotten so expensive. I've seen some hockey leagues that are like two hundred to three hundred dollars to join. Then their is an addtional thirty to fifty dollar fee for some type of national hockey rule registration. If that's not enough, they ask all their hockey players to pay twenty five dollars each to the referee to call all of their hockey games. Usually this is a per game fee. Some leagues even go as far as to charge a penalty fee, if a certain amount of players don't pay the referee fee. In my honest opinion, I don't want to pay half a grand to join some indoor league just to play the sport I love. There are others who would, but I think it is ridiculous to do so.

One thing I am happy about however is the fact that hockey equipment has, in my eyes, drastically come down in price. You can get discounts and closeout prices on hockey gear from a ton of stores and equipment that is from the previous year. Its best to always wait for clearance. I don't care if my hockey stuff was top of the line a year ago if I got it at a ridiculously low price. I'll go with the slightly older stuff, than the newer more expensive stuff any day of the week.

So, to sum it all up, I still love hockey. I hate the cost of hockey leagues. I hate their inflation in prices and nonsense registration fees. I don't know if the cost of maintaining a sport court rink has gone up in the past few years, but it seems like it's greed and people trying to take advantage of the people that really love to play the sport hockey. I can't wait to play in a league again, I still have to get my hockey gear and I'll let everyone know when I do and what brand it is. I haven't forgotten about the old equipment posts either, once my camera is functional I'll take so pics of my old hockey stuff.