Hey goalies! As some of you may know, I have been using Vaughn gear for the past two seasons, specifically the V6 2000 series. While I love their leg pads and blockers, I will admit that I have never been a fan of their gloves. Although some their glove models have achieved legendary popularity in the goalie world, I just cannot get used to the break and overall feel. I’ve tried to use a number of Vaughn models to achieve the specific feel I was looking for, but in the end, I kept going back to my old Reebok 590 gloves. The Lefevre 590 break simply allowed me to catch most naturally. Catching pucks is one of my few strong suits in net, so anytime I was wearing something other than my trusty 590’s, it impacted my game negatively.
I expressed my thoughts to the folks at Vaughn after I received my last V6 2000 set, which I had opted for a 7680 glove. This glove similar to what Jake Allen is currently using. This was in an effort to get something as close to a 590 as possible. While it was an improvement over my previous experiences with Vaughn catchers, it still didn’t give me the feel I was looking for.
A few months later, the guys at Vaughn mentioned that they had something in the works that I might have some great interest in— the new Vaughn XR Pro Carbon glove. I jumped on the chance to get on the demo list just as soon as they had some ready for testing!
Just a short time later, a box showed up on my door step containing a shiny new catcher to try. First impression, I’m in love. Here are the feedback notes I sent back to Vaughn:
- Feels very lightweight on the hand. I don’t know if it’s actually lighter in weight, or if its great balanced feel just makes it seem lighter than normal.
- Out of the box it was, by far, the closest to a game ready feel of any Vaughn glove I have ever owned.
- Although very slightly different on the break angle, i’d say it feels like a mix between Reebok/CCM’s 590 and 600 model gloves. It even has that look, to a certain degree. It leans more toward the 600 model if I had to pick the one it felt most like.
- I know i just said its feels like a 590/600 hybrid clone, but i think it also retains some feeling from that 7680 i had previously. I can’t put my finger on exactly what the similarity is, but its there.
- Catching pucks is my strong suit, so sometimes when i get a new glove, it throws my comfort level off enough to cause poor play. I did not experience that with the XR glove last night. I did have one pop out when I went to catch a puck out in front of my chest (thumb down) first baseman style, something i routinely do with no issue. I think the XR has a slightly more shallow thumb drop-off than the 590 does. Its a minor adjustment, and i was able to correct it by the end of the night.
After I used it on ice for a week or so, it was confirmed that I needed one immediately. I went home, made a new blank PadsTracker template for the XR pro carbon catcher and sent it off to Vaughn!! Now I am in the agonizing waiting period.
In the meantime, here are some pics of the demo catcher :
Here are the specs of the glove that I demo’d, provided directly from Vaughn Custom Sports:
- A completely new design for Vaughn for 2016
- The layout is a solid cuff thumb design
- The lightest catch glove to date, weighing in at approximately 2 LBS
- Where plastic was once utilized, it is now replaced by the Carbon Fiber tech to achieve that lightweight with increased durability
- Maximized pocket area which assists in retaining and controlling pucks
- Redesigned back-pad to assist in wrist mobility
- Thumb to Index finger closure is an all new feel in the Velocity lineup
- Made in North America
If you have questions, please post them on the Padstracker facebook page and I will answer as soon as I see it, or head over to your local retailer to see the gear for yourself!