So I picked up a set of Brians H Series pads and I've been postponing a review due to having no on ice experience with them, but after a couple sessions her ya go!
So first thing i want to say is the ordering process from Hockey Monkey was very good, I went in to their shop and tried on a white and red pair that happened to be the exact size i wanted. They had my exact size (32+1 intermediate) white and navy in their warehouse too so i got the pads only a couple days after i ordered them. I tried on all types of pads: Reebok Larceny, Bauer one90, some p3s, and even some Rituals, and after about 3 hours of this I still felt that these Brians felt the best. I could have been the fact that I've been eying these for months but after awhile they still felt like the pad that fit my body and my style best. The close second was definately the one90 but they felt alittle bit awkward. Know for reference I'm a very butterfly goalie and technically these Brians are hybrid pads but after reading some spec. articles on www.goalies-only.com (Brians official website) they said that these pads would work for both types of goalies. I won't lie I was not exactly convinced but after trying them on I was instantly proven wrong. These pads are very very very stiff! That's a major thing for alot of goalies and i know alot of tenders like soft pads but I love pads that are very stiff and these are about 2x the stiffness of my one60s and 1.5x stiffer than the one90s i tried on( and yes i know the one90s have adjustable stifness but nevertheless they weren't as stiff). Because they are stiff they do give off huge rebounds and they are very predictable rebounds too which really help me when playing the butterfly. Know these pads have two breaks (one below and one above the knee). These are great because this is a very stiff pad and the two breaks allow easy transitions from the butterfly up and i could never do the pop-up(both legs popping of the ice at the same time from the butterfly) with my bauers even after hours of practice, but with these and with the double break i did it the first try! Also these pads provide alot more support while in the butterfly than my one60s. They have a pretty stock pad on the ice down side of the pad but then it has an about half inch pad on your calf which really helps elevate you higher. Also the landing pad on these is considerably thicker than my one60s (about half an inch or more of padding) which also greatly increased my height in the butterfly. All these increased height in the butterfly is amazing for me being a short 14 year old goalie: about 5" 2'. I can butterfly as hard as i can and barely feel my knee hitting the ice where in my Bauers my knees would be bruised after a practice of butterflying hard. The pads i got are intermediate which are a step-up from my bauers which were juniors and these pads are 10.75 inches wide. Overall these pads are incredible, and are great for any goalie playing any type of play as long as you like stiff pads. They work amazing for me (and I'm 160% a butterfly goalie :)). They close my butterfly much better than my Bauers, and whether you have a very tight butterfly, or a very wide one like me, you will have aboslutely NO trouble closing your b-fly. All of the graphics (halak graphics) are sewn onto the pad and all of the stitching is right on the money. The only screen printed thing on the pad is the 32+1 Intermediate on the side. The leg pads have toe ties(with the option of an offset toe tie), one boot/skate strap, composite leather straps, two clip straps, and one clip strap above the knee. I hate all straps above the knee, but the best thing (in my opinion) about these pads is that all of the clip straps are removable!! No more cutting them off and having them fray up when you play. The straps are attached to a high density sort-of clip that you can unclip and slide the strap out.
Now moving on to the catcher. My old catcher was a Brians DX6 junior and the Brians H Series one is a intermediate. It feels alitle bit bigger on my hand but still fits fine, and it has much more protection than my junior which is what i need since I will be playing Midget A next season. It has a good pocket which took alittle stretching out with a softball, like any glove, to get it to where i wanted it. Also Brians has a glove break in machine (I'll put the video down below of the machine in action) that breaks the glove in before they send it to you, so when i got this glove i could easily close it almost as well as i can close my old one that i've had to about a year and a half! After baking the glove and working it back and forth for two days it was just as broken in as my old one which was incredible. The glove can open up totally which is great for drying, but it also has six, yeah thats right SIX straps on the glove so you can customize the fit to fit your hand perfectly. Again all of the graphics are stitched on, not screen printed, and all of the stitches are picture perfect. Though the pocker isn't humungous, if a puck hits the glove away from the pocker, it gets funneled right into the pocket no problem. After a day of breaking it in, it sat on the ice totally flush for perfect puck freezing. The glove also has a cut out semicircle below the cuff below your hand so that pivoting your wrist is no problem and the glove will not restrict your wrist movement at all.
Now onto the blocker. The blocker too has the cut out semicircle below your wrist to allow for great movement. The blocker is incredible comfortable, and has great grip on the stick, much better than the grip on my Baur RX6 blocker. It has much more padding on the actually blocking surface than my old one, and it has a ton of protection on the fingers, and on the sides of the blocker so there is no chance of injury from shots not hitting the blocking side of the blocker. The fingers have considerable protection, and there is also an angle to the front side of the blocker to allow less strain on your arm when playing paddle down. The graphics are of course all sewn on and the seams are as usual.. perfect. Overall my puck handling has also increased dramatically with these new gloves. Before I couldn't even lift the puck but now i can puck handle, and shoot and pass much more accurately. Before i could barely get the puck to the hashmarks from my net, and now i can shoot and pass farther than center ice.
Overall these pads blew me away. They look amazing, they feel incredible. I can't say enough good things about the craftsmenship of Brians. I will post pictures of the pads, and all of the highlighted topics i talked about later. Please feel free to ask if I didn't make anything clear enough or I didn't mention something that you really wanted to know about I would be more than happy to answer your questions. :)
Link to Brians glove breaking in machine video :) -