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CCM Tacks Stick Review

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CCM Tacks

Flex: 85

Pattern: P46 Landeskog

Height: 5’10”

Weight: 226lbs

Position: Wing

Bought this stick right after demoing it at SJ6 in July. Played about 6 games and 2 drop-ins with it.

Comparisons: Past sticks cluttering the garage include Easton sYnergy S19, Easton Stealth RS I and II, Bauer Total One, Miken ZL, True 5.2.

Graphics

So much of this is personal preference – I tend to like simple black more of a matte finish on my sticks and this is much bolder. That being said the greyish stick with bold yellow and black graphics is sharp and this is a great looking stick. The grey stick colors blends to a matte finish towards the blade. Overall it’s bold but not crazy due to simple classic colors. This is a grip stick, again not my preference, and it does not come in a non grip format. The grip plays moderately tacky and I felt comfortable with it on the ice. Was not hard to get used to but I would prefer non grip. There are no “shark skin” or “diamond” etchings for feel which is just fine by me.

9/10

Stick Construction, Weight and Balance

Really well done here. You cannot see the fuse point at all – you can feel it a bit if you run your fingers over it and that’s all. This is a really well made stick. The stick is light weighing in at 430gms but that doesn’t come close to being the lightest in the category (that honor going to the Rekker EK15 at under 400 gms). That being said it’s pretty darn light and the balance is great. Maybe a tad light on the blade for me.

10/10

Blade

The blade has a matte finish with a CCM graphic at the toe. That looks nice but I never get the point of that because it gets covered by tape. One thing I have come to look for in a blade is that I want it to be thin yet responsive with a soft feel. The Miken ZL for me set the standard on this and the True was just as good. The CCM blade is fairly thin but not as thin as the Miken or the True. Visually it’s nice. The feel is also pretty darn good. Maybe not quite as good as the Miken but plenty good. Receiving passes it has a soft feel with feedback somewhat muted. The puck though really stays on the blade nicely. Not pingy at all. Nice job on this blade overall.

One thing about this blade that is worth discussing is the pattern. I have been using p92 clones for years and recently tried the p14 and fell in love with it. Finding p14 varients has been tough. The p46 Landeskog is billed as a Toews clone but it is not. It might even be better! The lie at the heel is the same as p92 but it has less rocker so there is more blade on the ice as you move towards the toe. I find this is the same as a p14. Where the p46 beats the p14 is that the blade is longer and taller so you get more paddle to play with. Nice job on this. Having more blade on the ice is really helping me shoot and play better.

10/10

Shaft/Flex

This is a mid point flex stick and as such is great on clappers. The flex on this one is an 85 and I think it’s a true 85. Loads up nicely and you do have to lean in a bit. Shaft dimensions are excellent and similar to the True and Miken. It is concave but not aggressively so. Rounded corners. Very nice.

10/10

Stick handling, Passing and Shooting

As discussed above the blade has a nice feel to it. Not the best ever but fairly good feedback. The puck though seems to stay glued to the blade so in this regard stick handling is helped. Overall I wouldn’t say this is a danglers stick but its is, for sure, a shooter’s stick! The puck is absolutely launched off this stick and I am shooting slap shots better then I ever have. As a mid flex shaft load and release is designed for a slap shot an the stick delivers. Wrist shots are reall solid and hard too – really more suited for a snap but you get my drift I’m sure. Does it have that quick release of a low flex point shaft, no, but that is not what I was looking for. Whether it is the blade pattern I am now using or technology in the stick I am not sure but I do now I am shooting better than I ever have. I’m going to take one point off for stick handling but know I love the game play in this twig.

9/10

Durability

The grip finish shows no signs at all of peeling or discoloration. Excellent work on the finish and I expect the paint to hold up well – unlike my Miken ZL! I do have a fairly deep scar on the top of the blade and shaft running from the bottom of the shaft to the top of the blade. I don’t think I took any major chops there so I am bit surprised. As I move forward I will have to see if it I get more. I do not think it will impact long term durability.

8/10 but will revisit this later.

Overall

Really love the stick. I didn’t know if I would find stick love again after the Miken ZL and I am happy to say I can now move on. Love this stick. In fact a new one (I like to have at least 2 at a time – insert snicker here) was delivered last night!! It out shoots the True, shoots as good as my Miken ZL did and I really think CCM has a winner on their hands.

9/10

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CCM Tacks

Flex: 75

Pattern: P19 Nugent-Hopkins

Height: 5’9”

Weight: 165bs

Position: Forward/Defense

Past Sticks: Easton Mako (first gen), Reebok RibCor, Bauer X:60, Miken ZL.

Some background: I demo’d the stick at SummerJam 6 in Philly and immediately fell in love with it, so much so that I went out two days later and bought one. I also demo’d the Bauer MX3 and CCM Superfast at SummerJam, and while both were nice I kept going back to the Tacks, something about it just worked.

Graphics

I prefer simple and understated when it comes to graphics. CCM did a decent job of adding some nice pop to the look while keeping the overall design clean and simple. I especially like the outline logo at the bottom of the shaft.

8/10

Weight, Balance, Overall Feel

Bravo CCM… The weight and balance impressed me right off the bat. Anyone can make a light stick, but to make a stick that’s lightweight and also very well balanced now that’s the trick. Something about the way it plays, it just feels natural to me. When I hand this around, people always comment on how light it is and how good it feels.

10/10

Blade

The blade has really good puck feel. Until now, I thought the original Mako’s had the best puck feel. The Tacks blade is equal, if not better than that. I found the Mako blades tend to soften up and had a tendency to split at the toe. So far neither of those things happening with this stick. Those hard passes don’t bounce around when they make contact. Nice offering of patterns too. As a diehard Sakic/Hall user, the Nugent-Hopkins looked a little shallow to me and not quite as open. Switching between the two was seamless.

8/10

Shaft/Flex

The Tacks is a mid-point kick stick. I have always been a low-kick person, but this stick changed my mind. I have tried others in the past, just never found something I really liked. If you are a low-kick person, don’t totally swear it off. The shaft has some texture to it but it’s covered up with a pretty thick grip coating. I myself would rather not have a grip coating, but so far CCM has yet to offer that option. So it’s grip or nothing (psst CCM texture grip please). The flex seems to true to its rating compared with its competitors. No signs of it softening up or breaking down after three months of use.

8/10

Stick handling, Passing and Shooting

This along with the weight and balance is what made me fall in love with this stick. Slappers and wristers leave this stick with substantial pop. I even heard a goalie say “whoa” after I put one up over his shoulder. Really good puck feel, plenty of pop…what more can I say….

10/10

Durability

So far, so good. No real signs of major wear. No splitting or cracking on the blade and both the shaft and blade have not softened up. There is the usual nicks and scuffs, but nothing to be concerned about.

Honestly, durability or lack thereof, was my biggest fear when purchasing the stick. CCM doesn’t exactly have the best track record when it comes to sticks. We all remember that infamous night where Ovechkin broke all those sticks. That sort of stuck with me and was even in the back of my mind when I bought it. I knew I loved the performance, but how was it going to hold up… I really need to hand to CCM on this one, everything I expected and so much more. I can’t give it more than an 8/10 at this time. It’s held up well, but it’s somewhat early in its life.

8/10

Overall

I really love the stick and can’t say enough about it. Though I would prefer a textured grip and maybe white instead of black but that’s the small stuff. I fully intend to buy another and to continue playing with these sticks. I’ve already recommended it to friends and people I skate with.

Overall Score

8.66/10

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CCM Tacks

P19 Nugent-Hopkins

85 Flex

5'10" 195 lbs

Forward

First off, let me open with how I got this stick. I tried the CCM RBZ and the blade split right down the middle in the first period of the second game I played. Took it back to the shop I bought it at and they offered to replace it with either another RBZ or I could try the new Tacks stick. I opted for the Tacks as I could tell I wasn't really a fan of the RBZ.

Skin- (9/10) I love the grippiness of the shaft and how the blade smooths into a nice matte finish at the end. The overall looks and feel of the shaft and stick is excellent.

Blade- (10/10) This is probably my favorite blade I've had in a stick. So thin, yet really soft and responsive without the pingy vibrating feel. The p19 Nugent-Hopkins lie and curve fit my tastes perfectly. I've tried Bauers out and as far as my personal tastes combined with the performance of the blade on wristers and quick snaps made me realize how good of a blade this was.

Shaft- (8.5/10) First let me say, this is a true mid-kick stick. And you can snap it any which way you want, but you will not get the same results if you handle it any other way than a mid-kick. That being said, I've never been able to get my snaps and wristers with the same speed and accuracy. And it goes without saying that it is outstanding for slappers as well. I love that it is a true 85 flex that actually requires a little effort to fully load up. I was used to a lower kick-point prior to this stick but they may have converted me over.

Durability- (9/10) This stick has been great. I've used it in close to 20 games with no signs of anything out of the ordinary. A few little chips here and there. Nothing unusual. Time will tell if it holds up much longer. Holding the flex quite well for the amount of times I have used it.

Overall- (9.5/10) Probably my favorite stick I have ever owned. I only gave it a 9.5 out of 10 because I was used to more of a lower kick point. I will definitely be buying another of these Tacks Sticks in the same curve and flex.

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CCM Tacks

Flex: 75 (cut to 78 mark)

Pattern: P19 Nugent-Hopkins

Height: 6’0”

Weight: 178lbs

Position: Center/Left Wing

Background: Bought recently, somewhat on a whim, to replace a Bauer TotalOne NXG Vintage of similar flex/blade pattern. I loved the Total One line for years, but the recent sticks just haven’t felt the same. I like a true mid-flex. In talking to Bauer, and subsequently CCM, it seems they moved the Supreme/Total One flex point up a bit, and now call it a “full motion shot” stick. This stick was recommended by some forum members and CCM as a suitable replacement to my older Bauers. They were right.

Comparisons: Nike Bauer Supreme One95 (fav stick ever), Bauer Total One, Bauer APX2, Bauer Total One NXG (Vintage Graphics)

Graphics

Very clean. There is nothing that stands out on this stick, but maybe that’s a plus? Compared to an almost all black Ribcore, this stands out, but it’s far less tacky than most sticks out. As I age, the sticks I get seem to be more and more subtle. I don’t buy a stick for the graphics, but these are very classic, and I love it. I only give it an 8 since I like the new Tacks Ultra (not released yet) graphics even better.

8/10

Stick Construction, Weight and Balance

Excellent construction, as I would expect with a top model CCM stick. Although I don’t have a scale, it feels a bit lighter than my Total One NXG. Specs say the CCM Tacks weighs 430 grams, vs Total One NXG at 406… which leads me right into balance. On paper, the Tacks is heavier, but in my hands, it feels lighter, likely due to the balance. This stick feels extremely balanced, giving a better overall perception of weight than my previous Bauer sticks. The Bauers felt a notch blade heavy, while the Tacks is spot on for me.

10/10

Blade

Ah yes, the blade. Blades these days just aren’t what they used to be. I find almost all sticks are too pingy now and players like that. Nobody wants that butter, they just want massive shots. Well, I like butter. This blade is as soft as I have played with. Not that I have tried every stick out there, but I really like the feel of this one.

10/10

Shaft/Flex

Perfection. This is what really makes the stick shine for me. This is a true, mid kick stick, and the first stick in years I’ve had that compares to my old Total Ones shot wise. I love the way it loads my wrist and snap shots. I bought a 75 flex and cut it about 2 inches down to a 78 flex. In theory, this is what I did on my old Bauers as well, but they always felt stiffer. This stick maintained virtually the same feel and flex after cutting. I would call the grip on this shaft medium. Definitely tackier than no grip, but not the tackiest I have felt. I’ve always used non-grip sticks, and this is an interesting change. Enough to give me some extra hold, but not so much I feel like I can’t move my hands.

I would have liked to see the stick in a non-grip model, so -1 for lack of options.

9/10

Stick handling, Passing and Shooting

Stick handling is excellent likely due to blade feel and balance. I honestly haven’t even been thinking about it, which is how I like it. When I use a stick I don’t like, I constantly think about the stick handling… not this time. I don’t have much of a slap shot, so no input there. Wrist/snap shots are perfect. Accuracy is there, but so is the power I have been missing for a year or two. It loads so easily that I am actually having trouble with passes. Half of my passes have more of a shot velocity than a pass, and are sailing higher than intended. To me, it’s a good thing – and I will adjust.

10/10

Durability

It broke in my third game using the stick. Ill give it a 3/10... one point for each game I was able to use it. For reference, I have never broken a stick in my life, but… I understand that doesn’t mean much. Hopefully it was just a fluke. I am waiting on my warranty replacement and praying it lasts longer.

****EDIT**** The replacement stick from CCM has held up just fine. Bumping durability review from 3 to 7.

7/10

Overall (NOT AVERAGE)

I am going to omit the durability score for now, and see how the replacement holds up.

I haven’t purchased anything other than Bauer Total Ones for the past 6 or so years… have been too scared to drop money on a stick I might hate. This stick got me out of that funk – and already has me drooling for the new “Ultra” coming in a few months. Excellent overall stick and it already holds a spot in my top sticks of all time.

9/10

Edited by JimmyTheDriver

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