The Warrior Ritual Pro chest hit the hockey market by storm when it was released last year due. Being the new kid on the block, Warrior needed something to set them apart from the rest. They dove in head first and decided to go with a completely out of the box arm construction. They had us all buzzing with their new mechanical hard plastic arm construction. This year, Warrior has made a convincing case for your hard earned dollars with three new G2 chest protectors. Not only has Warrior pushed the envelope with innovation and out of the box thinking, but they are refining and improving the staple elements of their chest protectors. Let’s take a closer look at each of the new units.
G2 PROWith the Ritual G2 Pro Warrior has improved their plastic arm design. They’ve also made a huge effort to refine the entire package into something that brings much more than just innovation to the table. The first refinement Warrior made that has a profound effect on all of the new G2 Pro isn’t actually a piece of the chest itself… it’s the way the unit is made. When the original Ritual hit the shelves the arms were individually cut and sewn together. The original Ritual Pro samples we saw were supremely mobile which was almost unbelievable considering the amount of new tech in the arms. However, because of the nature of the production inconsistencies the higher level of mobility didn’t materialize as much as we would have liked in the retail chests. With the G2 Pro chests Warrior has eliminated this cut and sew technique and has implemented compression molded parts. Manufacturing consistency is key, and it shows in the unparalleled mobility of the unit.
What is every goalie obsessed with?Size. And the G2 chest absolutely answers that question. Squaring off the shoulder floaters, and flaring the shoulder caps gives the unit much more net presence in the shoulder area, which was a much needed refinement from the original. Where the original excelled with size and coverage was the arms - it pushed to the very edge of what is allowed at the NHL. This massive surface carried over to the G2 extremely well, if not even better with the addition of nylon on top of the previously unsightly plastic. Adding the nylon not only increases the durability but creates a much more natural feeling rebound. This is especially true on shots off of the bicep area. Another improvement that the nylon adds is that the arm mechanism slides better and more fluidly than the plastic did, increasing the mobility that much more. Mobility only means so much if you can’t get a proper fit though. Warrior is absolutely on point with the adjustments that they offer and somehow they just keep adding even more. With the ability to drop the chest almost a full size in length due to the back adjustments, move the floaters wherever you may need them, it’s almost like having a custom chest out of the box. Also, Warrior has moved away from the traditional side clip that is common in the industry. They opted instead for a Velcro setup that is much cleaner and actually offers even MORE adjustment as you are no longer locked in to a single attachment point like you would be with a clip. You can still adjust the tightness of the strap via the back plate and get it much snugger to the body than it is stock. Once again Warrior has come out with an innovative standout feature on the G2 to take another step away from the pack. Warrior has used their pro connections to improve their chest protectors so that the average beer leaguer can pretend they’re stepping out under the bright lights every Tuesday night. Jonas Gustavsson provided input for the extended length and removable belly protection that the G2 chest features. By removing the middle row of blocks, but keeping the side blocks in place, it gives goalies with an extremely low loaded stance more mobility at the waist while providing full side coverage. A nice side bonus of the G2 series of chest protectors being a bit longer is that the arms are much more proportional than they used to be on the original Ritual. The Ritual seemed to sit slightly longer than what would normally be expected of the size, (e.g. a medium would have arms equivalent of a large, etc). Having the body be slightly longer means that most everyone can fit a regular size, eliminating the need for most to special order a size large with medium arms, etc. The G2 chest is extremely modular, and if something doesn’t feel right there is an adjustment for it.
G2 CLASSICBut what about those goalies that just can’t stand the thought of having plastic arms? Warrior has thought of them too by adding the G2 Classic chest to their line up. The G2 Classic is a great option because it provides the same G2 Pro chest design but instead of the mechanical plastic arms it features a more protective and squared up version of last year’s Ritual Senior arms. The removal of the mechanical plastic arms makes the G2 Classic noticeably lighter than the G2 Pro. The traditional feeling arm slots in better with the old guard of goaltenders that want a chest focused on a balanced combination of lightweight and mobility rather than blocking. The G2 Classic is Warrior’s way of giving goalies good reason to consider making one of G2 chests their next purchase.
G2 SENIOR CHESTIf both of the pro chests are a bit out of your price range, Warrior offers the G2 Senior. It has similar arms to the G2 Classic but without the pro level protection that the Classic provides. The improved size and squared off chest floaters mean that you aren’t giving up much coverage compared to the pro models. Warrior has done a great job at providing an extremely adjustable platform that brings lots of improvements from the original Ritual, but at a more affordable price.