No goalie? No problem

New app helps teams find goalies on short notice

Screenshot of Puck app that helps teams find a goalie in Toronto.
Screenshot of Puck app that helps teams find a goalie in Toronto.

Attention Brendan Shanahan: if the Toronto Maple Leafs run into goaltending issues this season, there’s an app for that.

Niki Sawni, a recreational hockey player, thinks that he has a solution for the age old question, “Who’s playing net?”

Sawni played competitive hockey in his youth, and upon graduating university played in several men’s leagues. After several experiences using rent-a-goalie services he was left less than impressed.

“Renting a goalie was awful, basically. They just send any goalie to you and the guy can be absolutely awful … or maybe even too good,” says Sawni.

The experience gave Sawni the idea for Puck, an app that  is a cross between Uber and Tinder, but for goaltenders. It allows users to pick a goalie based on several factors including location, time and skill level.

Puck also solves the frequent problem of paying the borrowed goalie.

“When we needed to get cash to pay the guy, we’d all be looking for toonies and five-dollar bills,” Sawni recalls. “It’s just a hassle … and it could all be automated through an app.”

Puck launched in Toronto on Sept. 1 and currently has 100 goalies of various skill levels available to be selected.

But what if one of these prospective tenders thinks that he’s Carey Price even if his skills aren’t quite up to par?

“At the end of the game, the goalies rank the team and the team ranks the goalie…. Everybody has bad games, but if it’s consistent we’ll either drop them down a level, or remove them from the app,” Sawni said.

Puck is currently only available in Toronto, but the app is expanding to Ottawa on Nov. 1. Eventually Sawni would like it to go even bigger.

“The goal is to go across Canada, and maybe even into the United States,” Sawni said.

2 comments:

  1. All Rent A Goalie services are the same and this one will be no different.
    If the only goalie available is either too good or too weak, that goalie will do the game.
    Rent A Goalie services never turn down the opportunity to make money off the backs of goalies.
    One service even charged a minor hockey organization at Baycrest arena for goalies and didnt pay the goalies because they didnt realize that the league was paying.
    So many goalies will play for free and would be embarrassed to take money to play net.

  2. As the owner of a 10 year old rent a goalie company I actually take offense to the line:
    “Renting a goalie was awful, basically. They just send any goalie to you and the guy can be absolutely awful … or maybe even too good,”
    While I can’t confirm all companies practice the same ideals I know for sure that my company will send the right goalie to your games. I’ve also passed on games if I didn’t have a goalie available that plays the teams level. In fact most leagues have actually clamped down on making sure rentals aren’t above the teams level.
    For clarity it’s inappropriate to say “they” as it lays claim that it’s all other rental services that do this when some of us treat this as a real business with real customers and we work hard to keep them happy. We know that sending a “bad” goalie to a game can result in lost future business so it only stands to reason we send the most appropriate goalie to each game or pick up skate.

Comments are closed.