Hockey NHL players to use heated blades in practices to see if suited for games



Tuesday Oct. 16, 2007. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

A select handful of NHL players are about to begin using heated skate blades produced by a Verdun, Que., company to enhance performance.

Thermablades use a rechargeable battery and a microprocessor within each skate blade to maintain a temperature of 5 C. The warm blade increases the thickness of the water layer between the blade and the ice surface, and the company says its tests have shown this reduces gliding friction and starting resistance for skaters.

"The NHL is very interested in confirming the data provided by Therma Blade Inc. to establish the safety and reliability of the blade under NHL game conditions and we have agreed to allow a small group of players to test these blades in practices over the next few weeks," says Kris King, the NHL's senior manager of hockey operations.

Six to 10 players will try them first. If there are no glitches, the blades then would begin appearing in NHL games.

King says once he receives from the company a list of players who want to participate, he and Stu Grimson of the NHL Players' Association will review it and decide who'll be asked to wear the blades.

Wayne Gretzky was so impressed with Thermablades when he tried them more than three years ago that he invested in the company.

NHL players to use heated blades in practices to see if suited for games
I personally like the idea , infact i think i had that same idea long ago ,,,, id like to go out and get the T-Blade ... but think about it ... do they really need to skate even faster then they are now! ... then what about all these amateur hockey players ... i think more injuries could result , do to being out of control!
There's too much technology in the game today. Carbon fiber sticks, heated skates, jerseys that shed water..why not just have robots that can skate 40mph play the game instead of human beings?

Go back to wooden sticks, classic jerseys and basic skates. Use skill and hard work to give yourself an advantage, not technology.