By Tim Culverhouse
From watching the Harry Potter series as a child, one of the most memorable quotes deals with how wands pick their master, and not vice versa. While the magic of the world created by JK Rowling cannot be recreated in the world we live in, but there are instances where I have felt the power of an item reaching out to me, wishing to be mine. And, in a comparable selection process that Harry has in picking his wand, I too had this when I would choose a hockey stick.
The selection process is one of a tedious and careful nature. There are hundreds of different makes, models, curves and flexes to choose from, varying in price and reliability. In the hockey shops where I buy my equipment, there are so many different options that it takes time to find the right one. I know going into the selection process that there is a specific height and weight that I am looking for, but different brands offer different feels to each different person.
When I was selecting the current stick that I to this day that I use, I was looking for a new brand, and a strong, reliable stick – as I had broken my previous stick after only a short period of time. At the store as I was peering through the brands, CCM, Bauer, Reebok, TPS, Warrior and Sherwood, I narrowed down my decisions. When I was making my final decision, I had narrowed it down to CCM and Bauer, with the price rather similar. As I selected, there was an inner feeling of connection to the black and yellow stick. The Bauer, out of all the sticks in the shop, was the one that felt right.
To this day this is the stick that I own. It is the stick that I have owned for the longest period of time, and continue to use on and off the ice. The connection I have with this stick goes beyond an athlete and his equipment. I chose this stick out of every other one, and its meaning goes beyond the use of it during games and practices.
When it came down to selecting this stick, I felt connected to the colors, as they are representative of the Bruins by their black and yellow. The curve for my right handed shot is minimal, so I can use my backhand effectively as well. The flex is a pro stiffness, so I can get as much torque on my shot as possible. And the length corresponds to my preference to use the longest stick possible. It is perfect for the game that I play.
Beyond all other materials, my hockey stick speaks most about me. Anyone who knows the sport can determine my style of play, and those who don’t know that much can see that this is the stick I chose over every other one.