Category Archives: Hockey Equipment

Subdued Look Highlights New Jetspeed Skates

Subdued Look Highlights New Jetspeed Skates
Subdued Look Highlights New Jetspeed Skates

Hockey’s arms race has carried over to nearly every corner of a player’s bag but sticks and skates are at the forefront of the battle between giants CCM and Bauer. CCM’s efforts to match the trio of fit lines offered by Bauer led to the return of the Tacks skates and the redesigned and renamed RBZ line, which is now known as the Jetspeed.

The original Jetspeed took up the mantle from the RBZ with a drastically different shape and style than the RBZ. The Jetspeed features a narrow, tapered fit with much lower volume than the RBZ featured. CCM also swapped the RBZ’s rather traditional look for a far more spacey boot design. Unfortunately the look did not pass the mirror test, especially compared to the RBZ’s previous look.

Luckily, CCM has come around with a far better design for the new Jetspeed FT1 skate. It’s still not as appealing as a basic, black boot, but the overall look has improved on the new CCM skates.

The new Jetspeed skate takes up CCM’s revolutionary one-piece boot design, a feature introduced on the Tacks skate in 2016. The one-piece boot takes away the traditional build of fusing a boot to a footplate and attaches the runner directly to the wrap-around boot. This creates a complete anatomic fit and increases the contact points between the foot and the rest of the skate.

Thanks to that wrap-around fit, the true benefit comes when you bake the skates and fully form the 360 degree boot to your entire foot. CCM has also loaded the skate with a new Totaldri liner, a product designed to keep your feet dry and the skates smelling like new even longer.

Overall, the skate is designed to respond better to your skating stride, allowing for a more explosive first stride. The new 360 fit is obviously the most impressive feature of the skates and it’s worth the time to try out on Great Skate’s new synthetic surface as the feature feels like nothing else you’ve tried in a skate.

Go For a Spin on Great Skate’s Synthetic Ice

Go For a Spin on Great Skate’s Synthetic Ice
Go For a Spin on Great Skate’s Synthetic Ice

Go For a Spin on Great Skate’s Synthetic Ice

You never really know if a pair of skates are right for you until you get them out on the ice. Looks and fit in the store only go so far and now Great Skate offers you the chance to test skates on our all-new synthetic ice testing zone.

The new Skate Anytime surface covers the Great Skate shooting range to provide an unparalleled area for players to test new gear. Using a unique construction gives the Skate Anytime surface the closest feel to a true ice surface as possible. Compared to the .01 coefficient of friction of ice, the Skate Anytime surface only has a .55 coefficient of friction.

Unlike ice, the surface is made of interlocking plastic panels which combine seamlessly to prevent an irregular or unnatural skating surface. The product is also incredibly durable surface as it only deteriorated 1.9% after 100 stops on the same panel. This means that not only will you get a true feel of your new skates, but you can rest assured that the surface will give a true feel.

Go For a Spin on Great Skate’s Synthetic Ice
Go For a Spin on Great Skate’s Synthetic Ice

This is a first for Western New York and a first for Great Skate. While our shooting test range has been available for customers to use for a number of years, there wasn’t a perfect way to give a customer a true idea of how a new pair of skates might feel. Other than baking a pair of skates prior to lacing them up, there were no other options available.

Go For a Spin on Great Skate’s Synthetic Ice
Go For a Spin on Great Skate’s Synthetic Ice

The surface reacts to both straight ahead skating and edge work, ensuring any test will give the closest feel to what you’ll experience on the ice.

With Great Skate’s new testing center, you can lace up a new pair of skates, grab a stick and take a spin around the mini rink. This presents the opportunity to test skates and sticks in a more realistic setting. That means a far more realistic and game-related scenario.

This is the only synthetic skate testing surface in Western New York, meaning that Great Skate is the only place in Buffalo you can lace up a pair of skates and fully test them. So if you’re unsure if a Bauer Vapor or a CCM Jetspeed is right for you, Great Skate has you covered.

Industry Q&A: Brian Anderson – PadWrap

Industry Q&A: Brian Anderson - PadWrap
Industry Q&A: Brian Anderson – PadWrap

One of the hottest products on the goalie market today is PadWrap. The self-applied product allows goalies to change the color of their gear almost on the fly. It’s a perfect product for goalies who have switched teams but don’t want to buy a brand new set of gear. To learn a little more about the product, we chatted with Brian Anderson, owner of Philly Sports Customs and the creator of PadWrap.

Brian’s answers to Great Skate’s questions are in bold.

For those who aren’t familiar with Pad Wrap and what it is, give us a quick breakdown of the product.

Brian: Essentially Pad Wrap is synthetic leather (like the material used to make goalie equipment) with a strong yet forgiving adhesive on the back that allows you to change the color of your goalie equipment simply by peeling and sticking. 

What was your inspiration for developing the product? Was there a “lightbulb” moment where you realized there would be a market for this?

Brian: I had spent years trying to change the color of my gear to match my team at the time.  I tried vinyl dyes, duct tape, you name it. Finally stumbled across an adhesive that allowed me to add some color without it being a permanent solution (for resale value). 

Have you made many upgrades or changes to the product since you started selling it? Or has that not been necessary?

Brian: Most definitely.  We have altered the formula for our adhesive over the years to allow the product to be more pliable than ever.  This was needed to allow it to make some hard bends around corners and such.  We’ve also expanded on the original Pad Wrap product by adding the family with a self-sticking nylon (for the nylon portions of equipment) as well as allowing full customization for team logos, and our palm-protecting “Pro Palm” which sticks right into the palm of the glove.  Most recently we templated hundreds of pads so that we can offer Pad Wrap pre-cut based on pad model, size, and zone. 

Of the different sizes you sell and the various features of Pad Wrap, what’s the most popular version that you sell? Is it pretty much dominated by goalies looking to swap the colors or their pads or are you seeing a lot of other uses?

Brian: Yes, goalies are really our core customer.  The original Pad Wrap synthetic leather is still our biggest selling product and the bulk of sales happen across 6 colors, but we offer 30 for those who want to push the boundaries a bit further. 

In your opinion what areas of goalie (or player) gear are best suited for Pad Wrap? What are the worse areas, or areas you’d recommend avoiding?

Brian: Pad Wrap is really intended for accents to the graphic on the face of the pad.  We don’t recommend putting it inside the legs where it takes high friction.  We have to keep the product thin enough to be pliable and if we made it thick enough to withstand inner leg friction it wouldn’t be as easy to work with where it’s intended…the front face of the pad. 

Do you find that it’s best used on trim areas like specific pieces of a pad’s graphic as opposed to the full face of a pad?

Brian: We don’t really recommend using it to cover the entire face of the pad although we have seen it done. The problem with that is it’s a lot of surface area to cover and durability can become an issue.  

 What is the best usage of Pad Wrap that you’ve come across? (Best looking/best application in this case)

Brian: We always find that “less is more”.  The simplest accent pieces to align the equipment to a team’s colors can really make for a sharp look. 

The process to cut and apply pad wrap is pretty straightforward but it’s also easy to lose focus when you’re tracing and cutting the pattern on your pads. What advice do you have for those out there wanting to put some new color onto their pads?

Brian: A few quick tips: First you really want to clean the pad well of any grime or oils before applying.  Simple soap and water works well and then you want to be sure it’s fully dry.  A lot of people tend to like blue painters tape as opposed to tracing paper.  You can stick several strips together to make a small “sheet” and then apply to the pad.  Lightly cut around the graphic and then peel and stick that painters tape “template” that you’ve made onto the pad wrap and trace it.  The tracing paper can be tough to keep in place without it moving so this is a good solution.  After applying the Pad Wrap we suggest you heat it lightly with a hair dryer or heat gun to reactivate the adhesive and get some good pressure on it.  It will cure fully in 48 hours. We have several tutorial videos at wrapmypads.com on how to wrap each individual part of the pad. 

 You’ve had quite a few NHL teams use the product over the past couple years, what has it been like seeing the product on an international stage like the NHL?

Brian: It’s been very exciting.  It really doesn’t get old.  Seeing some of my heroes (after all I’m a hockey fan first) wear something I created has been a huge thrill and has been validation that the product has a place in the game. 

Do you have plans to do products that would apply directly to NHL uses? Or is the current product already ideal for that?

Brian: We sell a lot of the standard leather Pad Wrap but have also seen a boost in our nylon products for non-goalies on player gloves, pants, etc.  We also have some pro goalies using our “Pro Palm” now for practice situations where they are taking shot after shot to the palm and need a little boost in protection. 

Give A Little Bit This Holiday Season

Great Skate Gift Card Promo
Great Skate Gift Card Promo

Great Skate wants to give you a present this year. While supplies last, shoppers will receive an additional $20 gift card with the purchase of a $100 card.

Simply buy online or stop into Great Skate to make your purchase to secure that extra $20 to finish up all of your hockey shopping for the holiday season.

In a world of continually changing designs and features when it comes to hockey sticks, gloves, skates and apparel, a gift card is often the best choice as a gift option. That way the recipient has the freedom to shop around for what they need without the added complication of taking care of a return or an exchange.

Scoring a $100 gift card is going to make any hockey player happy, it will cover the costs of most sticks on the market while taking a big chunk out of the cost for pro-level sticks like the Warrior Covert QRL or the Bauer Vapor 1X. The same goes for gloves as most price point gloves come in at or under the $100 level while pro models are a bit higher but are greatly discounted when applying a $100 gift card. Add another $20 to the mix and you’re in business!

If you so choose, you can utilize that $20 gift card on apparel or accessories. Perhaps a Bauer New Era hat would accompany the $100 gift card well. If you know the gift card will be used on a stick, buying a few rolls of tape is a nice way to help out your recipient as well.

While unwrapping a gift card isn’t the same as unwrapping a stick or new gloves, you can’t go wrong with the freedom of choice a gift card offers. In the end, it really is the perfect holiday gift for the hockey players in your life.

Be sure not to wait until the last minute; there are limited supplies on the bonus gift cards. So buy now to make sure you get that extra $20 while supplies last.

Great Skate Black Friday Sale

Great Skate Black Friday
Great Skate Black Friday

Starting on Friday November 25, 2016 from 8am – 9pm, receive 25% off your purchase at both Great Skate and Greatskate.com. If you are going to be shopping online you can take advantage of early shopping and In-Store pickup. When shopping online please use Promotional Code BLACKFRIDAY (Please note that your discount will be deducted at the time of shipping)

Great Skate will be opening a bit early on Friday morning starting at 8am, so if you or someone you know is out shopping at Best Buy, Target, and Kohl’s tell them to stop by and check out our great deals. Choose from all major manufacturers such as Bauer, CCM, STX, Reebok, Warrior, & Vaughn. If a Bauer Supreme 1S or Bauer vapor 1X stick is on your list this year you won’t find a better deal than at Great Skate!

25% Composite Sticks
25% Composite Sticks

Don’t forget to ask about our door buster deals such as Bauer Nexus 2015 model sticks will be marked down 40% off, CCM 72″ Hockey Goals $99.99, CCM 54″ Metal Goals $54.99. How can you beat these deals?

Bauer Nexus 2015 Sticks
Bauer Nexus 2015 Sticks

When it comes down to Fit, Feel, Performance look no further than Great Skate. Stop by Friday morning at 3395 Sheridan Drive / Amherst / NY / 14226. If you aren’t from WNY give us a call at 1-800-828-7496. As always some restrictions may apply (MAP) This will exclude minimum advertise price item. see the full offer here

Take advantage of this sale today. It won’t last long. GAME ON!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Great Skate Summer Sale

Great Skate Summer Sale 2016
Great Skate Summer Sale 2016

For the 35th summer, the best deals in hockey can be found at Great Skate. The annual Great Skate summer sale kicks off on July 27 and runs until July 31.

No items will be left out of this incredible sale as all items will be at least 20% off throughout the entire store and an added tent sale begins on the 28th. Anything under the tent will be marked down even more, with discounts up to 80% off through the duration of the event.

This includes composite sticks priced between $29.98 and $99.98, skates starting at $29.98 and all items under the tent between 30% and 80% off from the past model year. Additional deals on apparel and tent buster discounts that are simply too low for the internet will be available as well.

Low prices aren’t the only thing worth stopping by for. A host of incredible giveaways will take place throughout the event ranging from great swag to a Great Skate shopping spree.

If you’re stopping by to snag a new pair of skates, all CCM purchases will come with a free hat. Not to mention, if you happen to snag the right key in the Tacks giveaway, you’ll win a new pair of CCM Tacks pro skates!

Any purchase made over $100 will qualify to win a $500 Great Skate give card, so buy early and buy often to snag that piece of the pie.

However, the gem of the Great Skate summer sale giveaways is a pair of World Cup of Hockey tickets. Drop in your name to enter and you may be trekking to the Air Canada Centre to see the NHL’s best battle for the World Cup between September 17 and October 1.

Mark your calendars now, you certainly don’t want to miss the chance to save big on Bauer, CCM, Warrior, STX and more at the 35th annual Great Skate summer sale.

STX Demo Day

STX Demo Day
STX Demo Day

Drop everything you have planned for this weekend, STX will be making a stop at Great Skate this coming weekend. You’ll be able to test out the newest Surgeon and Stallion sticks along with the matching gloves in Great Skate’s shooting range.

STX will have the new Surgeon RX2 and Stallion 600 on hand along with the rest of their stick line which includes the RX2.1, RX2.2, Surgeon 400 and 200 sticks. While you’re testing out the new STX sticks you’ll also have the ability to try out STX’s impressive glove line.

STX currently offers two glove models, the traditional fit Stallion and the taper fit Surgeon. Much like the Vapor and Nexus lines from Bauer, the Surgeon and Stallion lines use a similar familial design and feature package.

For players who prefer a tighter fitting glove not unlike a lacrosse glove, the Surgeon is ideal. Brand new, it fits very snug to your hand without restricting mobility. As the glove breaks in there is plenty of play but it remains a unified fit. The Surgeon, meanwhile, has the fit and feel of a traditional four roll glove despite a more modern design.

Of course, the stars of this weekend’s STX Demo Day will be the twigs. You’ll get a chance to get your hands on the brand new STX Surgeon RX2. The Surgeon RX2 is a revolutionary new stick that has completely changed the traditional design of a hockey stick. Using a new, rounded/concave shaft design, the new Surgeon stick looks more like a lacrosse shaft than a hockey stick. However, this is more than just a gimmick.

The new shaft design of the Surgeon RX2 is designed to create more points of contact with the palm of your hand, ensuring greater control and power when shooting or stickhandling.

While at the STX Demo Day be sure to enter the various raffles and contests on hand which will allow you to win a number of prizes including a brand new Surgeon stick. You’re not going to want to miss this opportunity as the STX Demo Day runs all weekend at Great Skate.

Save big at the Great Skate Yellow Tag Sale

Save big at the Great Skate Yellow Tag Sale
Save big at the Great Skate Yellow Tag Sale

Save big on nearly all of Bauer’s 2015 collection at the Great Skate Yellow Tag sale.  With massive savings on a number of items, the 2016 Yellow Tag Sale provides some of the best prices on the best gear from 2015.

The MX3 skates are incredibly light and provide pro-level performance thanks to the anatomically designed CURV composite boot and the Free-Flex tendon guard which gives a customizable option for players to choose from.

Additional savings are available on the entire Vapor collection from 2015. That means you start saving on the APX2 pro gloves and other protective gear from the Vapor line. Thanks to the Yellow Tag Sale, you can find the cheapest prices on Bauer Vapor equipment from the past year.

Other sale items on price point models like  the X 100 gloves and  X80 pants surpass the 25% threshold, with the X80 pants currently available for only $64.99.

Bauer’s newest family member, Easton is also roped into the Yellow Tag Sale. In fact, some of Easton’s most impressive releases from the last year are 44% off or more. The sale on the Stealth CX stick cuts nearly 50% of the price off while the Synergy HTX stick is currently on sale for 50% off the original price.

As Easton is transitioned into Bauer’s collection, many of their products will either change to the Bauer name or disappear altogether. So for players who are passionate about Easton’s equipment, now is the time to buy. You can get Easton pro sticks on sale for incredible prices to ensure your stockpile doesn’t dwindle for some time.

One final piece of the Yellow Tag Sale is CCM’s RBZ protective line. As the company transitions to a new name under the Jetspeed and Quicklite lines, the RBZ collection will move away. That also means that the entire RBZ protective line will be priced to sell.

The RBZ line is a good looking line that has drawn from the former Crazy Light collection to create a blend of protection and performance. The entire RBZ protective line is highlighted by the use of Crazy Light U foam, which is designed for pro level protection without adding bulk.

You can find more gear in the Yellow Tag Sale in store or online at Great Skate.com

New Goal Skates are a Game Changer in the Crease

New Goal Skates are a Game Changer in the Crease
New Goal Skates are a Game Changer in the Crease

It wasn’t until just a few years ago that any significantly new design features were utilized in goalie skates. However, as the need for aggressive lateral play has grown prevalent, the ability to push and attack from the butterfly is now a hallmark of nearly every goalie’s game.

Properly executed, goaltenders can remain highly mobile even with their pads on the ice after making a save. For today’s butterfly goaltender, lateral mobility after making a save is a tool needed almost every play. It’s also a tool that can be limited by the traditional cowling on goal skates.

The point at which your blade leaves the ice on account of the cowling is affected by the attack angle of your skates. This attack angle has been a subject of evolution in recent years as Bauer in particular has led the way in this regard. By increasing the height of the cowling, more of the skate blade remains in contact with the ice longer. For example, the Supreme One.7 goalie skates feature a tall cowling which allows a goaltender to keep their pad level low as they push side-to-side.

Of course, no skate is built perfectly in that regard. Even the most recent Bauer skates still will catch on the ice despite of new cutouts on the cowling instep. So, the new OD1N 1S skates feature no cowling at all. This is a revolutionary new design feature which leaves the skates looking far more like a pair of forward skates than goal skates.

The new Bauer goal skates will certainly be unlike anything any goalie has ever seen just as the performance benefits will be unlike anything they have seen. The newest goal skates will give players the ability to leave their pads that much closer to the ice without their foot sliding out on a push. For goaltenders who wear their pads particularly loose, it wouldn’t be surprising if there is the illusion of pads not even leaving the ice despite the goaltender pushing with their power leg.

There will probably be a point where the improvement doesn’t offer any further benefit, but we haven’t reached that point. Not yet at least. The skates coming on the horizon will be truly revolutionary to the position and the goalie skates at Great Skate today offer a drastic improvement in play for butterfly goaltenders.

New Bauer Goalie Skates
New Bauer Goalie Skates

Great Skate Holiday Gift Guide

Great Skate Holiday Gift Guide
Great Skate Holiday Gift Guide

Have a hockey payer on your shopping list but have no idea what to get them? Look no further as Great Skate has a foolproof hockey gift guide to provide you with a stocking full of gifts for hockey players.

Apparel

You can’t head to the rink without repping your favorite equipment manufacturer or perhaps your favorite hockey shop. So, if you’re looking for a gift that won’t just live in a smelly hockey bag – but probably still a smelly hockey player’s bedroom – check out our wide variety of hockey apparel. You can go with a small stocking suffer like the Bauer skate lace bracelet; grab an ultra popular Bauer New Era hat; or you could go big with a warm Bauer hoodie.

Accessories

There are no better stocking stuffers than hockey accessories. A few rolls of tape, a new piece of wax or even a hockey puck bottle opener would make any hockey player’s holiday.

On-Ice

Of course, every player is hoping to unwrap a new piece of gear or two. If you’re going for a new addition to the bag, the Bauer Supreme 150 glove isn’t a bad choice. It’s an anatomically designed glove which is made to fit tighter against the hand to provide a more responsive fit. Another safe, but hard to wrap, option is a stick. Great Skate offers pretty much any stick you could think of and one of them could take the cake as the best present at the party.

Mini Sticks

There isn’t much to be said here. You can find a wide range of mini sticks at Great Skate including the super popular new composite models. Made with the same look and feel of their senior models, sticks like the CCM Tacks or Bauer Vapor 1X can be bought in mini versions for countless hours of fun played with pucks made of wrapping paper.

Gift Cards

Hockey players can be picky, especially when it comes to equipment. So, if you’re unsure if you should be getting a pair of black Bauer Nexus gloves or a red, white and blue pair of Warrior Covert gloves, a gift card will do the picking for you! Great Skate gift cards come in any denomination you may need, from $25.00 right up to $300.00.

Happy Shopping!!!