The following is a guest post written by Andy, who agreed to test the new Miken Z9 hockey stick for HockeyWorldBlog.com. The Miken Razor Z9 was provided to us for review courtesy of Miken Hockey. Be sure to read Andy’s Miken Razor Z9 initial impressions review for a broader picture of the sticks look, capabilities and performance.
I’ve been using the Miken Razor Z9 for about 2 months now. I was immediately impressed by its feel and my instant connectivity to the stick. It felt like I had used this stick before and was very easy to switch into my arsenal. I was naturally concerned with the pro-stock feel, as they tend to break much easier than regular sticks. So, how has it fared? Check it out:
Specs: Miken Razor Z9 Clear SR, Non-grip, BP40 curve, 100 flex
Modifications: Cut 4-5” off the butt-end (essentially turning it into a 105 flex)
Appearance and Design:
I was originally excited to see the white stick when I first got it. I knew the paint would chip a little, but not many people had a white shaft on their stick, and felt it stood out. However, what I failed to realize was the dye from my gloves could wear off on the stick. I now have about a 4” light-blue smear midway down the shaft (around the “Z9” logo) from my bottom glove wearing on the stick. This is a very light mark, and hardly noticeable, yet is still there.
I also have a few chips out of the stick, namely on the blade. A few gratuitous slashes have taken small chunks from the top of the blade, and there are quite a few gashes and cuts in the paint along the bottom of the shaft. The blade faces seem to be in very good condition still, with no cracking to this point.
Using this stick for ice and roller has given me the chance to really put it through the ringer. The stick is extremely light, and my arms don’t feel any more tired from holding it – which means I can put more power into my shots. The ice and roller pucks seem to stick to the blade and don’t kick off. The blade feels solid when catching passes and I feel confident even with the bouncing of the roller puck.
Shooting and Accuracy:
I have had no issues with shooting with this stick at all – in fact; my accuracy may have even improved. I feel more confident picking the corners, and the puck sauces off the blade perfectly on shots and passes. The puck explodes off my stick with slap shots, even breaking a roller puck (Sorry, Matt). My snap shots feel crisp, and go exactly where I have aimed them. Wrist shots don’t flutter, and feel smooth when released. I don’t feel I have lost anything in switching from my Easton S14, and have no problem switching between the 2 at will.
As previously stated – this stick has worn very well considering its aggressive use. Sure, paint has been slashed off, and there are minor chips in the top of the blade, but overall, the stick still feels solid.
The first time I brought this stick out, I received a barrage of advice from others, letting me know how much they regretted buying other Miken sticks. They had told me horror stories about taking shots and feeling the stick disintegrate in their hands, or how the stick just lost its feel and seemed to decline in performance over time.
I have had none of these issues. The stick still feels like new. The shaft is still rigid, and the blade is still in stunningly great shape. There aren’t even any cracks forming on the faces. I take lots of slap shots, and the blade still feels solid, even after 2 solid months of use.
For having that pro-stock feel, this stick was built well. My experiences with this stick have left me a believer. My shots haven’t lost any speed or accuracy, and the puck seems to stick to the blade when catching passes. We hockey players live by the same mantra – The better you look, the better you play. Aside from a few cosmetic wear marks, this stick has me looking better, and playing better.