Vaughn Ventus SLR2 Junior Leg Pads
New for 2019 is the second generation of the popular Ventus line from Vaughn. The Ventus SLR2 line was created as an option to the Vaughn Velocity line. The Velocity series is a flexible and soft pad that is extremely popular with hybrid style goalies. Some Vaughn pro goalies wanted a hybrid pad that was a bit stiffer then the Velocity pad but did not want a stiff blocking style/butterfly style pad. With input from goalies like Matt Murray of the Pittsburgh Penguins and Jimmy Howard of the Detroit Red Wings, the Ventus SLR series was born. The SLR and now SLR2 series is a combination of a hybrid and butterfly style pad combined into one.
Some of the new features is the SLR2 pad are a stiffer section from the knee up which allows for greater coverage in the butterfly position by keeping the thigh rise rigid. From the knee down, the Ventus SLR2 pad has a softer feel compared to a traditional blocking/butterfly pad which allows for better movement and easier recovery techniques. The face of the SLR2 pad is very firm which allows the puck to rebound off the pad at greater distances compared to a traditional hybrid style pad. Also new on the Ventus SLR2 pad is the new inner edge material. Vaughn is now using a quick slide material on the inner edge, the knee landing and outer calf wrap. This quick slide material will greatly increase the side to side speed of a goalies butterfly slide. This material will help tremendously later in games when the ice is chalked up and slow. Another new feature of the Ventus SLR2 pad is the toe bungee system. For years manufactures like Vaughn have used skate lace to connect the toe of the pad to the toe of the skate. In recent years, after market bungee toe tie products have become very popular because they allow the toe of the pad to stretch from the toe of the skate with an elastic type effect. This stretching and recoiling improves the recovery process of a goalie but also takes pressure off the goalies ankles, knees and hips because it eliminates the quick stop and jerk process that skate lace has when it runs out of slack. The vertical roll on the SLR2 has also been changed for 2019. The vertical roll (outer roll) is now a triangular design which eliminates weight and increases rebound control. The last change we would like to mention on the 2019 SLR2 pad is the top binding. Just like on the 2018 Velocity VE8, Vaughn has gone to a more square and stronger top binding. This style binding allows for a stronger and tighter seal when the goalie is utilizing the butterfly technique.
Vaughn Ventus SLR2 Junior Leg Pads Features:
- Full foam core internal structure
- Full flat front blocking surface
- Solid outside roll with beveled profile shape
- Flat inner edge with higher density foam
- HD foam internal core front panel for superior performance
- Tall graphic has split front face and sewn in graphic stripes
- New bungee cord toe attachment
- Quick slide inside edge material
- Wide knee cradle with angled adjustable strap
- New wider leg cradle design speeds pad rotation
- Deeper inner knee side panel for added balance and coverage
- Firm front pad surface for more active puck response
- Tapered outer edge on knee cradle for added pad rotation
- Rotation control strap
- New top thigh rise creates increased blocking surface
- Very light weight
- Pre shaped pad structure for precision fit
- Available in sizes 24+2″, 26+2″, 28+2″
Differences between Ventus SLR2 & Velocity VE8 Junior & Intermediate Series:
Some of the main differences between the SLR2 lines and the VE8 lines: One of the main differences is the size at the junior and intermediate levels. The SLR2 series are made to be larger then the VE8 models. If you are looking for a larger junior or intermediate size, the SLR2 is the way to go. If you are looking for a smaller junior or intermediate glove, the VE8 would be the way to go. This can be seen in the two pad models as well with the SLR2 offering one size option larger (SLR2 offers a 28+2 vs. the largest VE8 junior pad is a 26+2) as well as the SLR being slightly wider then the Velocity. On the other side, the VE8 offers a goalie pad one size option smaller and slimmer then the SLR2 (the smallest VE8 pad is a 22+2 vs. the smallest SLR2 at 24+2).
Choosing the correct size for a young goalie
Parents have a difficult job when purchasing new goalie pads for a younger goalie. They want to get the best gear they can to help their child fulfill their potential. They also don’t want gear that the goalie will grow out of right away. Finding that balance can be very difficult, however the goalie manufactures do a very nice job keeping most youth, junior and intermediate goalie pads on par with each other price wise and generally quality wise. You will not see wildly different price ranges in these three younger categories. The decision of what goalie pad to buy really comes down to what type of goalie they are and their particular style of play. Most hybrid goalies – meaning goalies that tend to make saves with several different methods and techniques generally like goalie pads with extra breaks and knee rolls on the face of the pad. This allows the pad to be more flexible and move with the goalie easier in these different motions. Most butterfly oriented goalies tend to like flat face pads which tend to be more stiff and help utilize the butterfly technique. Although the butterfly is not a style of play but rather a technique, goalies are generally categorized as a butterfly goalie if they use this method on the majority of saves they make. These simple suggestions can go a long way in determining what type of pad to purchase for a young goalie.