seagoal Posted June 24, 2021 Share Posted June 24, 2021 I've been sitting on bringing this up with you guys since I got my new V9 gear, trying to get some games in to see how this unfolded and formulate my thoughts. Long story short, I'm sorta struggling with the new pads and need to chat about it, get some thoughts, tips, advice etc. I have 4 games in 3 days in with the new gear so I have a good bit of understanding of how these feel, play, and compare to my older blue VE8 set. All in all, I am super impressed with the V9 stuff. I'm not the quicked to jump on modern trends and evolutions in gear and I warm-up slowly. For this new red set, I pushed myself a bit to change what I am comfotable in just a bit and get up to speed on modern trends. My VE8 pads are really, really squishy (see below) and what bugged me the most about them was torsional flex on my knees. They would collapse with any downward pressue on the thigh when down, pucks would blow through the thigh, the boot arcs and wraps around my skate, etc. So, I want to correct all that with the red V9 set. Quick aside on the mitts: no real problems or issues with these. I am quite comfortable with these and enjoying them thus far. The red glove is stiffer than the blue glove so I have had to spend a good bit of time applying heat to it. I did have 1 goal last night result from a pop-out that I shoulda snapped up, but I am also making good glove saves and also really loving the pop on the and comfort of the blocker. Back to pads. Noteworthy is that these pads are the exact same size. They are somewhere between a 34 and 35 and of course built to my legs. They are just built differently in terms of stiffness and you can see how that translates to how they look, rest, and of course....how they feel and play. They were ordered with a Stiff thigh and a Soft (stock) boot. First the pros of the red V9s: (this is ALL relative to my squishy VE8s.......the amazingness of Bauer Ultrasonics, for example, not coming into play here) -Quick Slide is a god-sent gift to goaltending. Holy crap I love this stuff. It works so damn good and it makes moving around when down so effortless and easy. I am already seeing improvements on my game when down now that I have pads that can meet or exceed my technical and mechanical abilities. This stuff is a great asset and tool for easy, fast, efficient mobility when down and that lasts through a whole game. Huge plus. -Rebounds are nice and hot and easy to steer. The added stiffness and core strength of these pads gives good pop to pucks and I am finding myself directing pucks more rather than pushing pucks more, which is good. In general, I am playing a bit more passively with the V9s and if I can get that dialed in and comfortable will be great for overall efficiency, control, and predictability of my game. -Core strength when down is excellent. These pads feel very firm and strong and supportive. I feel like I am "on" them rather than "in" them. They have very good features that allow for excellent upright, tall, erect posture and they support my body and my movements extremely well. This along with Quick Slide makes being "on" these pads down on the ice a dream. They are so easy to move in technically my game has improved for sure down on my knees in these pads. These have no torsional flex. The boot line is firm in the front, no arc, and if I exert pressure on the thighs they do not collapse, twist, or fold. Excellent core strenght on these pads. Now the cons: -Footwork is awkward. I feel clunky on my feet, whether shuffling around the crease, turning around for water, skating to the corners or behind the net, skating up to play a puck....etc. Again, I feel "on" these pads rather than "in" them. I don't feel they move seamlessly or fluidly with my legs so that when I move around on my feet, I feel like I am "pulling" them rather than them moving "with" me. I feel the stiffness and the boxyness of these when performing any type of footwork and it feels clunky and uncomfortable. I play the puck a lot and I am a really excellent skater and I feel like these pads have dropped me down a few notches in these categories. -Resting and leaning is strange with these because they move very little. I am a forward leaner on my pads when at rest, you know, forearms/elbows pushing down on the thighs. With my blue pads, they obviously just collapsed and folded down to my leg. With these red ones, they resist that pressure and I find now that resting is no longer "restful" because these have changed my posture, stance, and position at rest. It feels clunky and awkward. When resting I find myself longing for my blue pads. -Skate interaction is a bit awkward. I don't know quite how to explain this one that well, but since the bottow of the pads are stiffer and flatter than my blue pads I feel them "on" my skates rather than my skates being "in" them. The boot channel on the red pads is a bit more shallow and in addition to them being stiffer and not arcing in the boot at all, they are firm on my skates. I'm not saying this is good or bad, just that it is different and I feel it. It is awkward and clunky. So that is a good run down on my experiences and thoughts moving from the blue 8s to the red 9s. To summarize: on my knees doing goalie stuff--wow. V9s are a dream and they have improved my game and I love them. On my feet not doing goalie stuff--they feel clunky and awkward. Here are some comparative pics to give visuals. For the flex comparison pics I made a concerted effort to apply the same force on each to show how they differ. Not scientific but you'll have to take my word. I would love to hear thoughts, comments, advice, questions from you guys. 1 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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