Stick: Elevate XL27
Flex: 75 flex
Kick Point: Low Kick-point
Grip or Non Grip: Non Grip Matte
First Impressions: I had two very distinct reactions when I first unboxed this stick. This is the weirdest stick I have ever seen. It was more curved than I expected and made me a laugh a bit because I’ve never seen anything like it. Secondly, However, this is a very well-made stick. You can tell a lot of work went into its development. It’s light, and pretty well-weighted, despite the curved shape. It also feels quite sturdy. The graphics were really cool; I loved the design and subtleness. I stick handled with it for five minutes out of the box and it was weird. I didn’t know how it would translate to the ice. Let’s see how it goes on the ice.
Review: I had spoken with Andy Oman, the founder of Elevate and he told me that it takes 75 minutes to get used to the stick. I thought that was a low number as it’s about the same time as it takes me to get used to any other stick I’ve tried for the first time. He was absolutely right! I took the stick to a two-hour open hockey session and by the end of it, I almost forgot I was using a different stick. This stick is dope! Stick handling isn’t any different; it just takes a little bit of time to get used to. You have to have your hands perfectly placed to use the stick at its full potential. Once you do, shooting is even better. It feels like your shot starts before you even decide to shoot. The stick feels pre-loaded for the shot and waiting for your go. Absolutely effortless to take all kinds of shots. My one-timers came off quicker, and wrist shots felt harder and faster. I’ve been working on the Roll Out the Back stick-handling method that Patrick Kane uses and if you shoot at the right time, it’s a like a cannon. I scored five goals at the open hockey in many different ways. I love one-timers and this stick make them much easier to time my shot. One thing Andy had mentioned was that goalies have trouble with timing their shot. The goalie I was shooting on was a buddy of mine, and I told him to keep a look out. He didn’t really notice a difference.
Negatives: I only found two real negatives to the stick. The first was the blade pattern. It’s not the normal pattern I use and if it was I might have had more success. For those who use the P92 curve, or its equivalents, you may enjoy it even more. Because of the pre-loading of the stick, I found that with this pattern, it was sending my shots high, and I couldn’t control it as much as I would have liked. The second negative is shot deflections; they are essentially non-existent. It is so hard to get the shaft of your stick on a puck with a normal stick, but this thing had no chance. You really need to know every inch of the stick and what it’s going to do before you can get any deflections. Even if you get the shaft on the puck, there’s no telling where it will go; the bounce is so unpredictable. I was able to get a few deflections but the only successful ones came off the blade. Same with catching bad passes; I couldn’t catch a bad pass because I couldn’t get the shaft on it.
Conclusion: I was really shocked at how much I liked this stick. I originally thought it was gimmicky but actually using it changed my mind. I got a few chirps but my five goals shut them up. It helped me shoot everything better. It was only a slight advantage but it was a noticeable. I only used it for a short amount of time, but with further use hopefully it will get even better. I give this a 9 out of 10. I took off the one point for the unpredictable and uncontrollable deflections. This stick would be terrible for centers or deflection enthusiasts. The learning curve is also super important. You need to be comfortable with the stick before you can take full advantage of it. Because it’s so different, it does take some getting used to. I gave it to a few of my teammates before a game and they really didn’t like it. However, if they had a longer time with it, I think they would enjoy it as much as I did.
Don’t knock it until you try it!