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markush

Hollow used by Connor McDavid

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18 hours ago, markush said:

Just interested to know - does anybody have information about that?

 

I don't know, and can't find it published anywhere, but I'm guessing he's on 1/2" or deeper. Reason being is that his speed is all driven by crossovers. I'm assuming to get the force he does on both inside and outside edges when crossing over he's more interested in bite than glide.

 

colins

 

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I would guess the other side of 1/2". Like a lot of the best skaters in NHL history, McD's a major bender, which gives more bite from less hollow. Still just a guess though. Take away his lateral speed, he's still incredibly fast.

 

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It's nearly impossible to tell based on the eye test.

I'm pretty sure Modano used something above 1". I don't know many people (in recent memory) who use something deeper than 1/2 voluntarily.  With the taller holders/lifts making it easier to get close to the ice on turns I really don't see any reason for using a deep hollow, unless you skate on marble-esque ice. I've also seen most people be able to transition shallower and shallower over time. 

The one thing that always made me laugh was people claiming their sharpening was "too sharp" after getting a 3/8 and deeper sharpening as that was the "house" hollow, and then going and rubbing their steel on a piece of wood to "dull" the edges. Good times. 

Edited by Cavs019

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34 minutes ago, Cavs019 said:

The one thing that always made me laugh was people claiming their sharpening was "too sharp" after getting a 3/8 and deeper sharpening as that was the "house" hollow, and then going and rubbing their steel on a piece of wood to "dull" the edges. Good times. 

I see that all. the. time. 

Either you're on the wrong hollow, or you waited WAY too long between sharpenings. 

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Ci7fbUuW0AAiIjK.jpg

 

Only the goalies and Kessel  below 1/2". An older chart from a few years ago had Crosby at 7/16", now 9/16". I wouldn't be surprised if McDavid is above 1/2" for more glide.

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1 hour ago, Cavs019 said:

It's nearly impossible to tell based on the eye test.

I'm pretty sure Modano used something above 1". I don't know many people (in recent memory) who use something deeper than 1/2 voluntarily.  With the taller holders/lifts making it easier to get close to the ice on turns I really don't see any reason for using a deep hollow, unless you skate on marble-esque ice. I've also seen most people be able to transition shallower and shallower over time. 

The one thing that always made me laugh was people claiming their sharpening was "too sharp" after getting a 3/8 and deeper sharpening as that was the "house" hollow, and then going and rubbing their steel on a piece of wood to "dull" the edges. Good times. 

I read on here Fedorov skated on 11' radius at 1" hollow. I'm not sure about the source though.

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7 minutes ago, flip12 said:

I read on here Fedorov skated on 11' radius at 1" hollow. I'm not sure about the source though.

At least five on that penguins list are above 1". I can't imagine, but I'm also a crap skater. 

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1 hour ago, Cavs019 said:

It's nearly impossible to tell based on the eye test.

I'm pretty sure Modano used something above 1". I don't know many people (in recent memory) who use something deeper than 1/2 voluntarily.  With the taller holders/lifts making it easier to get close to the ice on turns I really don't see any reason for using a deep hollow, unless you skate on marble-esque ice. I've also seen most people be able to transition shallower and shallower over time. 

The one thing that always made me laugh was people claiming their sharpening was "too sharp" after getting a 3/8 and deeper sharpening as that was the "house" hollow, and then going and rubbing their steel on a piece of wood to "dull" the edges. Good times. 

Weird, I don't know of a place around here that has a "regular" any deeper than 1/2". A 3/8 has always been considered "deep" in these parts.

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I feel a lot more agile with a shallower hollow, and transitions are easier.  The drawback is that sharp turns at high speed can feel a bit dicey at times.  

Would be interesting to know what hollow McDavid uses. 

Edited by Giraffe14

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Body weight also plays an important role - think as McD is not that big/heavy 1/2 or 9/16 is a good guess. 

But would be great if we could get a verified info / source. 

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11 hours ago, IPv6Freely said:

At least five on that penguins list are above 1". I can't imagine, but I'm also a crap skater. 

I prefer shallower hollows and have ended up on edges deeper than 1/2 from eBay purchases and it feels awful, like the ice is ripping my knees out of my legs on every turn and stop. I also prefer a long radius, so I think the shallow hollow goes hand in hand with that.

The shallowest I've seen was 1.5", on a pair of Gaborik-used skates that were up for sale on eBay. He was also on a long radius: 10-20.

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4 minutes ago, DarkStar50 said:

End of the day, there is how we skate and there is how pros skate. Sorry folks, ROH has nothing to do with it. Those guys flat out know how to skate.

 

Pros skate a hundred different ways. I still find this analysis interesting. ROH is a factor - but just like stick flex and stick length, there's no single answer to the question of what's "best".

Edited by colins

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I believe pros skate more alike than you may think. The best place to watch a pro skate is behind the goal line. Watch any NHL skater perform a C cut breaking out of his zone as you watch his stride from the ass end and think what you may have in common with him. Sorry, but for most of us, probably not much. And if you really want to have some fun, google any Youtube clip of Paul Coffey from the 80s power skating(that would be without lifting either leg off the ice, just shimmying his hips from side to side like elite figure skaters do for speed before jumps) goal line to goal line to see how stride and technique take professional hockey and figure skaters apart from everyone else.

Edited by DarkStar50
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24 minutes ago, colins said:

 

Pros skate a hundred different ways. I still find this analysis interesting. ROH is a factor - but just like stick flex and stick length, there's no single answer to the question of what's "best".

I don't thinks it's all that big of a factor. I'm willing to bet guys simply skate on whatever they are familiar with. I don't believe they look to it as a performance gain or loss. I can see them saying to the EQM "skates feel a little dull or a little too sharp", the EQM tweaks the hollow and asks "is this more what you're looking for". 

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25 minutes ago, stick9 said:

I don't thinks it's all that big of a factor. I'm willing to bet guys simply skate on whatever they are familiar with. I don't believe they look to it as a performance gain or loss. I can see them saying to the EQM "skates feel a little dull or a little too sharp", the EQM tweaks the hollow and asks "is this more what you're looking for". 

 

Do I think Connor McDavid could skate the way he does on both a 1/2" OR a 1" ROH if we had two pairs of his skates and asked the EQM to swap them between shifts? Yes, I do.

Do I think Connor McDavid cares what specific hollow he has on his skates when it's game day? Yes, I do.

It is a big factor in that every player only has ultimate trust and confidence when they have things set the particular way they want them. That's true at the beer league level, and even more so at the pro level. So back to the original question - what's McDavid's preference w.r.t. skate hollow? We're still waiting for that answer.

If you read stories on Coffey and what he used to ask Barry Stafford for, it's evident some of the greatest skaters in the history of the game were constantly looking for improvements to what we'd assume was an already perfect situation. Coffey, Bure, McDavid - they all share something in common with the way they moved their feet - they rarely took more than a couple strides before utilizing a crossover. Today's best skaters are the ones with a high crossover to stride ratio. Coffey did it on a 1" ROH http://edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/nhl/cult-of-hockey/the-nhls-best-players-pushed-stafford-the-hardest-the-oilers-way-pt-4

 

 

 

colins

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1 hour ago, DarkStar50 said:

I believe pros skate more alike than you may think. The best place to watch a pro skate is behind the goal line. Watch any NHL skater perform a C cut breaking out of his zone as you watch his stride from the ass end and think what you may have in common with him. Sorry, but for most of us, probably not much. And if you really want to have some fun, google any Youtube clip of Paul Coffey from the 80s power skating(that would be without lifting either leg off the ice, just shimmying his hips from side to side like elite figure skaters do for speed before jumps) goal line to goal line to see how stride and technique take professional hockey and figure skaters apart from everyone else.

 

McDavid and Eichel are very different skaters at a technical level. They are both elite, but the manner in which they achieve their elite status is very different. There are many shades of gray in between. Coffey was a treat to watch and I still like looking at video of the way he skated.

Robby Glantz does an excellent breakdown of Eichel and McDavid here: 

 

colins

Edited by colins
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2 hours ago, colins said:

If you read stories on Coffey and what he used to ask Barry Stafford for, it's evident some of the greatest skaters in the history of the game were constantly looking for improvements to what we'd assume was an already perfect situation. Coffey, Bure, McDavid - they all share something in common with the way they moved their feet - they rarely took more than a couple strides before utilizing a crossover. Today's best skaters are the ones with a high crossover to stride ratio.

colins

I was wondering if you were thinking of this before, but it sounds like you're on the "Linear Crossover" topic. I'm actually quite skeptical that this works the way that the guy who's always pushing it describes. It is a powerful weapon for attackers, but it's not all about top end speed. If it were you'd see guys taking linear crossovers when they get their first step out in the open on a breakaway. Also, the guy with the best speed today might still be Grabner and he hardly ever takes crossovers. He just outskates everyone on the ice and with a lower stride rate to boot. Where I think this technique actually has its effect is in forcing the defense to constantly update its angles of coverage, kind of like a weaving game of "whack-a-mole" plugging holes so the shiftier skaters can't break through. Changing direction with the puck places much more demands on the coverage of the attack and this is why the biggest points producers use "linear crossovers," because they're unraveling the defense as they transition. Even Ron Francis or Pierre Turgeon were masters of this and they weren't the fastest skaters by any means, just quick and shifty. This makes sense because hockey is more a game of 2-D races, going for patches of open ice, than it is a game of linear 1-D races of just to get to a point first. The 1-D race does come up but not nearly as often as the 2-D race, and the guys who are best with the puck continually reset the table by shifting the patches that they're using to apply pressure on the defense with. This is where the linear crossover comes in: keep going down the ice with speed, but open up a little space so this defenseman comes over, then back and now by him because he's not keeping up, or pull him over then pass to the recently covered ice that's now open for the sniping winger to come in and profit from the opening. I think that the explanation needs a little more detail to make the most sense. To say that linear crossovers are the best way for speed just doesn't jive with what I see the best skaters do when there's no one in their way.

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6 hours ago, flip12 said:

I was wondering if you were thinking of this before, but it sounds like you're on the "Linear Crossover" topic. I'm actually quite skeptical that this works the way that the guy who's always pushing it describes. It is a powerful weapon for attackers, but it's not all about top end speed. If it were you'd see guys taking linear crossovers when they get their first step out in the open on a breakaway. Also, the guy with the best speed today might still be Grabner and he hardly ever takes crossovers. He just outskates everyone on the ice and with a lower stride rate to boot. 

 

Yes, I agree with everything you said here. We're speaking crossover to stride ratio w.r.t speed in the context of the offensive side of the game of hockey - which as you point it is all about seeking/attacking open ice and pressuring defenders to change direction.

Skaters that rely on deep knee bend wide extension (like Taylor Hall for example) have incredible straight away speed which works really well when they have clear open lanes. But that is rarely the situation for forwards in a 60 min game of pro level hockey. In the Robby Glantz breakdown video I think Eichel runs out of room once the defender Sekera closes the gap on him. If he takes another stride his skates are going to hit Sekera's skates and his rush will be over - so he spins to keep the play alive. McDavid usually can keep striding at very high speed even as the gap closes because his stride (especially during crossovers) is realtively short and he'll crossover in tight space to increase the gap without any hesitation (head, hands or feet). 

Grabner as you mention is another interesting case - I haven't watched him nearly enough to have a full understanding, but it seems to me his secret sauce is his stride frequency. He just seems to return his extended leg under his body quicker than most skaters can.

McDavid's technique (and I think Bure was similar) allows them to maintain top speed while continually seeking/creating new space. For the game as it's played today, I would suggest this is the most useful type of speed/techique to have in your toolkit. Few can do it like McDavid can. Kids today should be learning this from an early age - a lot of traditional 'power skating' I've seen while my kids have grown up in the game don't have nearly enough emphasis in this area.

Great discussion - all the best,

 

colins

 

colins

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10 hours ago, colins said:

 

Do I think Connor McDavid could skate the way he does on both a 1/2" OR a 1" ROH if we had two pairs of his skates and asked the EQM to swap them between shifts? Yes, I do.

Do I think Connor McDavid cares what specific hollow he has on his skates when it's game day? Yes, I do.

It is a big factor in that every player only has ultimate trust and confidence when they have things set the particular way they want them. That's true at the beer league level, and even more so at the pro level. So back to the original question - what's McDavid's preference w.r.t. skate hollow? We're still waiting for that answer.

If you read stories on Coffey and what he used to ask Barry Stafford for, it's evident some of the greatest skaters in the history of the game were constantly looking for improvements to what we'd assume was an already perfect situation. Coffey, Bure, McDavid - they all share something in common with the way they moved their feet - they rarely took more than a couple strides before utilizing a crossover. Today's best skaters are the ones with a high crossover to stride ratio. Coffey did it on a 1" ROH http://edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/nhl/cult-of-hockey/the-nhls-best-players-pushed-stafford-the-hardest-the-oilers-way-pt-4

 

 

 

colins

Having spoken to an EQM at the AHL level. He tells me there are a good number of players who have no idea what they are skating on. They simply hand their skates to the guy who does the sharpening. He did say there are some guys who are fanatic about it, but nothing like you see at the retail level.

Again, I don't think it's an major factor. If you believe that, then you have to believe that he wouldn't be the same player on a different ROH, and that's just crazy.

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26 minutes ago, stick9 said:

Having spoken to an EQM at the AHL level. He tells me there are a good number of players who have no idea what they are skating on. They simply hand their skates to the guy who does the sharpening. He did say there are some guys who are fanatic about it, but nothing like you see at the retail level.

Again, I don't think it's an major factor. If you believe that, then you have to believe that he wouldn't be the same player on a different ROH, and that's just crazy.

 

At the retail level (I don't work retail, but I speak to a lot of hockey parents who take their kids skates to get sharpened ) I would suspect it's the opposite - lots of consumers have no idea there's even a choice, and they just want "sharp edges" which usually gets them 1/2" or 5/8" depending on the shop. 

I think McDavid would be an elite player on any ROH, with any flex stick and any curve. But I don't think any of the top of the top of the elite players in the league fit into the category you describe w.r.t not knowing what hollow they are staking on. Maybe 3rd & 4th line players in the AHL, but you don't become elite by not having attention to detail.

McDavid likely has a preference for hollow, and the question is (and remains), what is it?

colins

Edited by colins

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