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Aaron Brophy

Aaron Brophy has written 24 posts for The Poke Check Diaries

How To Equip A 9 Year Old Goalie

I hate going to rinks and seeing little kids with thousands of dollars of pristine high level goal gear on their bodies. All that tells me is that they’ve got rich sucker parents who’re more than likely compensating for their child’s athletic deficiencies by flashing them up in top gear. This fine photo, however, is … Continue reading

Cautionary Advice For Ryan Miller When He Sees Milan Lucic Coming

I’m a goalie, so I have all the exact same feelings of territorialism and indignant rage over insults both real and perceived that any of my masked brothers experience when they’re out there on the ice. But this whole Ryan Miller vs. Milan Lucic thing that just happened? Miller, well, there’s no more discreet way … Continue reading

Cautionary Advice For Goaltenders With Paralyzing Back Pain

Last Saturday I played one of my easiest/toughest games in a very long time. A day earlier I started experiencing paralyzing back pain. It was awful. I couldn’t bend down, couldn’t walk, couldn’t lift anything… heck, I couldn’t even put my socks on. So it was abundantly clear I was still playing hockey the next … Continue reading

Neil Young Abandons Toronto Maple Leafs, Declares He’s A Jets Fan

The CBC has declared something called Hockey Sweater Day In Canada today where you take a photo in your favourite team’s hockey sweater and send it in to them. That’s all well and good and fun, but there’s been a horrible betrayal in all of this — Neil Young has declared he’s a Winnipeg Jets … Continue reading

The Gospel According To Jacques Plante: Quitting

And so it was spoken, in the book of Goaltending, by the apostle Jacques Plante, on page 104, about quitting: “Playing goal when a team is leading is easy, but when it falls behind, the pressure mounts to the point where some goalies can’t stand it and stop trying. Without realizing why, they get mad … Continue reading

22 Goal Pad Designs Dissected By Real Artists

My 9980s I wear a set of Sher-Wood 9980 goal pads in red, black and white very similar to what Patrick Lalime wore as an Ottawa Senator in the early 2000s. The pads themselves are solidly crafted made-in-Canada products, but what I really love about them is the crazy v-lines in the design. It’s a … Continue reading

Hockey Team Code Of Conduct For A Power Outage In The Arena

Last night the power went out at Pickering’s Art Thompson Arena right as I was about to step on the ice to play my regular Monday summer hockey game in the Generals Men’s Hockey League. There were crazy thunderstorms in the area and apparently a nearby transformer got hit to cause the power outage. This … Continue reading

There’s A Goalie/Writer Spy In The Dressing Room

The first international ice hockey championship the United States won after the Miracle On Ice came in 1987 when a U-17 team featuring future pros like Jeremy Roenick, Mike Modano and Tony Amonte served notice that America was about to become a hockey power. The goalie that anchored that team was Buffalo native Ken Baker. … Continue reading

Ode To The Rec Hockey Slapshot Taker

Your slapshot does not scare me. Trust me, it doesn’t. The mask I’m wearing is made of kevlar. That’s the stuff they use in bulletproof vests. And having seen you play, if anyone on your team ever calls you “bullet” they’re being ironic. Oh, you just bought yourself a new $250 Bauer Supreme One 95. … Continue reading

Cautionary Product Advice About Kneepads

Never buy these. They’re to protecting your knees while playing hockey what the Maginot Line was to protecting France — theoretically perfect protection, but practically useless in the real world. I bought Bauer Supreme goaltending kneepads about three years ago when I switched my goal pants. With my previous pants I just tied the now-illegal … Continue reading