Editor’s Note: Chris Rosenthall has been playing both indoor and outdoor lacrosse all over the East Coast for 15 years. He has spent seven of those years coaching youth and high school programs throughout Northern Virginia, where he currently lives. You can find him on Twitter.
Company: Brine Lacrosse / Product: Deft Gloves / Price: $119.99
Every Saturday afternoon I play in a local box league against some very large, very angry people. As a result, I’ve racked up an impressive collection of hand and finger trauma through the years, mainly in the form of a completely purple thumbnail, but with the occasional fracture thrown in there from time to time. With that in mind, I was more than happy to try out a pair of Brine Defts for the latest LAS Gear Review.
If you don’t know the Defts by name, you probably saw them being worn last season by several prominent NCAA teams like Duke and Loyola, and their MLL versions have been featured here and here on Lax All Stars as well.
Appearance… + 10.0
With so many glove lines going crazy with their designs lately, the Deft’s two-tone look is a refreshing change. From the linear color scheme to the embroidered cuff, it’s all so crispy and clean; it only makes sense that so many teams have chosen to wear them. If you’re looking to customize, switching up the colors in the finger breaks is a great subtle addition that lets you make unique changes without going overboard. Want to buy the glove that draws the most attention to yourself? That’s perfectly fine; these just aren’t for you. As far as my tastes go, these are just right.
Comfort… + 7.5
The defts arrived in the mail a few days before my next box game, and I didn’t have much time to loosen them up beforehand. Fortunately, they were ready to wear right out the bag, with very little break-in time needed. They’re very light, snug without being tight, and the mesh portion of the palm (located right where the stick sits if you’re passing or shooting) is large and thin enough that you can actually tell a difference, both in feel and ventilation. Sometimes the box arena feels like you’re sitting in a parked car with the windows up; proper glove ventilation is definitely appreciated.
Protection… + 10
When I tested them out in my box game, the Defts handled the checks I took with no problem at all. The surface area of the thumb padding seems a little larger than Brine’s old King gloves (which I mean in a good way), and I always appreciate a glove where the side of the index finger gets a layer of actual padding instead of mesh. I’ll gladly test them out a while longer to be sure, but after my first week of league play, I’m happy to say I have no bruises or injuries to report.
Durability… + 5.0
Here’s my only complaint, and I’m not even sure it’s a big deal, but I’ve got a strand of string that popped up and started coming loose by the left pinky after my first game. Could be nothing, and I know these things happen, but since it’s been only one game (and the fact that it’s been getting longer), I’ve got to make a note of it. I’m sure the gloves won’t fall apart or anything, and it wouldn’t stop me from buying them, but if I didn’t mention it, what kind of review would this be?
Value… + 7.5
I’ve never been a guy who buys the highest of the high-end lacrosse gear. If they’re not part of a club team package, I’m perfectly happy getting some decently priced gloves and wearing them until they fall apart (or I leave one at a tournament, whichever comes first), which makes the Defts right up my alley. As far as gloves tend to run, they’re very reasonably priced, and I’m pretty confident your game won’t suffer as a result.
Overall Score: 7.8/10
Light, comfortable and very easy on the eyes, the Defts are a glove I’d definitely recommend, especially if you’re not interested in shelling out the cash for the ultra-expensive lines. For the rest of my box season, I’m taking a page out of Duke and Charlotte’s books, tossing my old gloves in my closet and switching to the Defts. Assuming my hands make it through the year fully intact, they just might become my go-to gloves for the future.