True Temper has burst onto the hockey scene in the past few years as a major player in the twig game. Big-time NHLers like Mitch Marner, Tyler Bertuzzi, and Thomas Chabot are among the stars who now trust True as their stick of choice. Each season we see more guys in the show hitting the ice with True, and that trend is matched by our customers with more and more demand for new True sticks.
We offer a large selection of TRUE pro stock sticks, from players across the NHL and beyond. Included in the selection are a number of pro stock sticks made for players who are prominent users of other brands, sometimes even having formal endorsement deals with someone like Bauer, CCM, or Warrior. A great example of this is this Cale Makar pro stock True Catalyst 9X.
Fresh off of a cup win, Makar is a Bauer golden boy right now, and features heavily in their marketing. Seeing him switch up what he uses in games at this point would be a shock, so why is True making sticks in his specs for him?
The answer is fairly simple.
From True's perspective, there is obviously huge value in getting a stick to someone like Makar (or Panarin, or Gaudreau, or whoever else), even if they're not planning on using them in game action right away. They are confident in their product and feel like there is no better way to convince players that they should be using True sticks than to put one in their hands and let them give it a try.
Lots of the time, the player might even specifically request samples because they've heard good things and want to give it a try, or took a teammates' for a spin and want to see how it feels in their own specs. This is often the case with True in particular, who has definitely been generating a lot of interest from players around the league with their new lines of sticks.
After making sticks to the player's specifications once, it becomes much easier to get sticks made up and sent over right away in the event that the player does ultimately want to use them. A one week vs one month turnaround time in getting a player a batch of sticks can make all the difference, and if the manufacturer ends up having a few extra on hand, HockeyStickMan is always available to help out!
In Makar's case it would have been pretty straightforward for him to get a sample. He uses ~100 flex and a standard P88 pattern (MC for True) that is easy to manufacture. All True has to do is put on a custom blue graphic to match Colorado's colors and slap "Makar" on the same bar and away they go. (True has done an awesome job with the custom team colored graphics recently - there aren't many twigs that look better on display in our showroom and the variety of colors is a big reason why).
For other pros who use custom curves, this process is a little more complicated. They would need to send in a sample of their curve to True for a mold to be created so the curve can be replicated. This is a lengthy and costly process, which is rarely available to anyone but the world's best players, but True seems happy to do it in most cases.
True's willingness to provide samples for players has gone a long way in boosting their reputation across the league, and we expect that it will pay dividends and ultimately result in True continuing to establish itself as a force in the world of hockey sticks.
And if you were a pro player and had the opportunity to get free sticks to test out, would you ever say no?