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Volume 26 No. 5
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Ontario Gear Company Making Waves With NHL Goaltenders

Halak and Brian's have experimented with the bear claw scratch graphic for several seasons
Photo: GETTY IMAGES

Ontario-based Brian's Custom Sports, a hockey equipment company that "uniquely deals only with goaltending equipment -- and only pads, gloves and chest protectors at that," is a "trailblazer in the unique world of customized goalie gear," according to Cat Silverman of THE ATHLETIC. The "wait time for a pair of custom pads" from Brian's currently sits at 14 weeks. Former NHLer Sean Burke was an "early Brian's customer," as were Trevor Kidd, Felix Potvin and the late Ray Emery. Bruins G Jaroslav Halak has "been with Brian's for nine years now." This season, Halak's pads have a "set of bear claws on the front of each, giving some Bruins inspiration to the graphic." Brian's has experimented with a "scratch graphic" for Halak season after season, "changing up the sizing and switching from a single scratch across the entire set to scratches on both pads." Maple Leafs G Garret Sparks might be Brian's "most time-consuming customer, designing his equipment down to the smallest stitching colors and logos." Sparks sends Brian's designer Chris Joswiak sketches to "kick off the consult for his gear each season, and from there it's a back-and-forth more meticulous than the planning of a wedding." Despite the long process, Brian's gear concept "only seems to be getting more popular with more pro goaltenders wearing their pads than ever before." Earlier this year, the Coyotes announced they were "bringing back their most famous logo" for every Saturday home game this season. After that announcement, it "didn't take long" for Coyotes G Antti Raanta to "seek out the OK" from the team's equipment manager to order a set of Brian's pads (THEATHLETIC.com, 11/19).