He'll Continue Personal Involvement in Equipment Development and Player Education Following Bauer Acquisition of Cascade Sports and The Messier Project
LIVERPOOL, N.Y. — Making hockey safer and improving player protection remain multi-faceted, intertwined and long-term challenges. But Mark Messier believes progress is being made in the mission, one the Hall of Famer has championed personally.
A big step just took place: Bauer Performance Sports has concluded its acquisition of Cascade Sports and The Messier Project.
The Messier Project, a collaboration between Cascade and the NHL legend, has raised awareness for player safety and head protection issues since its launch in 2009. The Messier Project’s helmets — the groundbreaking M11 and new M11 PRO — have given hockey players new technology in the battle to reduce the risks of concussions and other head injuries.
The Messier Project, its technology and Mark's personal commitment will not only continue, but be amplified under the banner of the industry-leading Bauer Hockey brand.
“When we launched The Messier Project, our goal was to make a difference,” he said. “It was an extension of a personal mission to better protect players and make the game safer through education and awareness, and product innovation.
“We’ve made great strides with this initiative,” Mark added. “And now the acquisition of Cascade by Bauer Performance Sports is exciting for The Messier Project and for me personally.
“I’ve always believed from early on that a major hockey company could make an enormous impact on helping to accomplish our mission. In meetings with Bauer it is clear we share a collective mission to protect the players. With the power and extension of the Bauer brand, and the combination of both our resources and assets, I feel extremely confident about our future direction.”
Mark has been involved personally from start-to-finish in the development of The Messier Project’s helmets. An admitted perfectionist when it comes to his own equipment, he has applied the same insight and scrutiny to the M11 and M11 PRO.
Now Mark will be able to partner with the combined resources of Bauer and Cascade in future product development.
“I look forward to working together with the Bauer and Cascade teams to continue to drive our mission,” he said. “I am very optimistic about our ability to accelerate progress in improving player protection, and deliver the most innovative head protection in the game of hockey.”
Mark remains active in the rollout of The Messier Project’s new M11 PRO helmet, the “next evolution” of the groundbreaking M11.
Like the M11, the M11 PRO is built around Cascade Sports’ patented Seven Technology, an impact attenuation liner system that’s designed to more effectively manage energy transfer from direct impact. The M11 PRO blends the advanced protection with a new streamlined design, aggressive styling and improved features to create a new level of elite performance, fit and comfort.
Mark points out that the M11 has been widely embraced by hockey players, teams, coaches and parents at grassroots and developmental levels of the game. The design and features of M11 PRO are part of an effort to get the same advanced technology and protection onto the heads of elite players.
“After two years on the market we received a lot of feedback from the players,” Messier said. “At the elite level, players felt really positive about the protection and comfort of the M11, but wanted a more streamlined design and look.
“We know from experience that we can’t ignore elite players' demands for the right design — the 'mirror test' for hockey helmets,” he added. “We’ve responded to that with the M11 PRO, a model that offers advanced protection and pro-level performance. The M11 and the M11 PRO give players two great options for advanced head protection.”
Mark was adamant on achieving an optimal fit with the M11 and M11 PRO, one that makes the helmet an extension of the player and completely unnoticeable during games. Players are telling him The Messier Project has accomplished that with both helmets.
“Comfort plays a role in protection,“ he said. "By eliminating pressure points, players are more likely to achieve a snug fit that keeps the helmet in place during play and on impact. The ProFit system is positioned low below the natural curve of the head with a mechanism that adjusts the entire helmet shell to provide a true, 360° custom fit.”
The Pro Fit system was first introduced in Cascade Sports’ top-selling line of lacrosse helmets and updated for the M11. The enhanced Pro Fit2 in the M11 Pro is a high precision, 15-point, no tool micro-adjustment system with a new ultra-compact, tapered design.
The M11 PRO is available in a full size range (s-m-l), and a Combo version that includes a perfectly fitted Cascade certified steel wire face protector in a neutral gray color for enhanced vision. Like the M11, the M11 PRO can be custom ordered in one of 256 color combination to help build team identities.