In order to be a prolific goal scorer, a player must have an almost Zen-like feel for the stick he uses. For lack of a better term, he has to be one with the stick so the feeling from the blade all the way on up through the butt end seems so smooth, so perfect.
Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin and Steven Stamkos all use different brands with varying degrees of curves, but they are one with their sticks. If they weren't, what are the odds that any of them are in contention for the Rocket Richard Trophy this season?
Slim at best.
Here is what we found out about the hardware Crosby, Ovechkin and Stamkos choose to use and why:
Type of stick: RBK Sickick II Technology with low grade curve
Why he likes it: "I was happy to find something that I liked pretty early in the season, and I wasn't sure how it would adjust. I'm pretty happy with it," Crosby told Sam Kasan of PittsburghPenguins.com. "The stick is part of it, that's for sure, but it's not everything. I don't change things a whole, but I tweak it here and there. When you change something that goes well, it's easy to keep it that way. That goes with confidence and your mentality and things like that. That's certainly part of it."
How long he's been using it: This is the first year Crosby has used these sticks. He was using a wooden stick with barely any curve up until the 2009-10 season.
Type of stick: CCM U+ with a deep curve
Why he likes it: "It's about comfort – when you have good stick it feels like part of you," Ovechkin said. "My sticks have a lot of flex and a curve that I like. I can feel the puck and make moves and I know what it is going to do."
How long he's been using it: Ovechkin has been using CCM sticks throughout his career, but the model typically varies from season to season. He used the CCM Vector last season.
Type of stick: Bauer supreme One95 with a toe curve
Why he likes it: "I really like the feel of it," Stamkos said. "It has a good kick point and it is extremely durable. If I find a stick I like I can usually make it last."
How long he's been using it: Stamkos has been using these sticks since he played for the Sarnia Sting in the Ontario Hockey League.
Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl