The following is a guest post written by Andy, who agreed to test the new Miken Z9 hockey stick for www.HockeyWorldBlog.com. Keep checking back for future posts from Andy regarding the Miken Z9 hockey stick as he continues to put it to the test!
Miken has been kind enough to send the folks at HockeyWorldBlog.com another stick to review – this time around, it’s their new Razor Z9 model. After a few favors, and a lot of pestering, the guys let me put it through the ringer.
I will be comparing the Razor Z9 to my current stick, the Easton S14. I am very happy with the stick. Although it took a bit of time to get used to, the S14 is my new baby. The S14 is a step down from the S19, comparing to the S15 line. It is well balanced and has a low kick point, helping with crisp passes and hard shots. The stick has grown on me, as I have left behind my old TPS XN10.
Miken boasts about its exclusive Z1000 fiber, which is “the highest grade material utilized in sports equipment.” This is aerospace-grade material. The strength of the shaft, along with the Zipfoam (foam core injected) blade means the stick is very light, and feels great in your hands. The Z9 is a pro level stick, and reminds me of previous pro-stock models I’ve used (but subsequently destroyed) before.
Stick: Miken Razor Z9 (Clear SR, Non-grip)
Weight: 455 grams
Curve/Lie: BP 40 (Easton Zetterberg/Bauer PM/Reebok P34/Warrior Savard)
Shiny black, tapering into a bright white about ¾-way down the shaft, the stick looks slick. There are touches of orange in the writing, and the “Z9” is all orange. The stick takes me back to my house hockey days, playing on the Flyers. Unlike the MV5 Pro Radial stick, there is no mention of “Made in USA” anywhere on the stick.
Changing to a new stick generally takes a few uses to get used to, to appreciate the little nuances of the stick, and to fully appreciate the updates in technology. That being said, the first time I felt the puck on this stick, I knew I couldn’t go back to the S14. The S14 felt hollow, but the Razor Z9 feels solid and comfortable. The stick doesn’t vibrate when catching passes and slap shots come off smooth and true. My snap shot even feels quicker, as the stick flexes in the perfect spot.
I have no issues handling the puck – it seems to stick to the blade. The puck doesn’t bounce off the blade when handling and I can feel it better than I could with my last stick.
Immediately the pro-stock-feel raises red flags, as previous pro-stock models I’ve used seemed to disintegrate within weeks; however, this stick does not seem to have this issue. Yes, the white paint towards the blade of the stick has chipped a little due to gratuitous stick checking by opponents, but the stick still feels solid. The shaft doesn’t groan or crack when flexing, and the blade feels solid. Before my first few shots, I was nervous I would shatter it within days, but I feel confident leaning into shots, knowing the stick won’t break.
I’ve skated with the Miken Razor Z9 twice now, and even after such a short period of time, this is my new favorite stick. My slap shot feels harder, snap shots are quicker and more accurate, passing is crisper, and stick handling is soft. I look forward to many more uses out of it, hopefully for years to come.