EXETER, N.H., June 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- No matter who wins the Calder Trophy at the NHL Awards event in Las Vegas on Wednesday night, Bauer Hockey athletes already have netted a hat trick.
Toronto's Auston Matthews, Winnipeg's Patrik Laine and Columbus' Zach Werenski — the 19-year-old finalists for the NHL's 2017 rookie of the year award — are official partners of Bauer, the world's leading manufacturer of hockey equipment. The three were outfitted with Bauer gear, including the brand's latest elite high-tech skates and sticks, as they made impressive, immediate impacts in the NHL during its 2016-17 season.
"Auston, Patrik and Zach are extremely talented, dynamic young players who have stepped right into the NHL as elite professionals," said Mary-Kay Messier, Vice President of Marketing, Bauer Hockey. "As rookies, they've all dazzled hockey fans and, more importantly, helped their teams improve with leadership-caliber performances and contributions."
Bauer athletes include hockey's most-complete and most-inspiring players who help grow excitement and participation in the sport. As part of this strategy, the brand seeks partnerships with up-and-coming NHL stars who become outstanding role models for younger, aspiring hockey players at all levels around the world.
"Our Elite Athlete Services team, led by Jim Geary, has done a great job of building relationships with world class athletes and showing how Bauer can help them take their games to even higher levels," Messier added. "Players like Auston, Patrik and Zach show their excitement and passion for hockey every time they get on the ice. They represent the young, dynamic players making an impact on fans and the game."
Matthews scored 40 goals and had 69 points to set Toronto franchise rookie records and help lead the Maple Leafs back to the playoffs. The top pick in the 2016 draft was the standout first-year player on a young Toronto team that had another Calder candidate and Bauer athlete in William Nylander.
Matthews, from Scottsdale, Arizona, entered into an exclusive partnership with Bauer last June. During 2016-17, the center used Bauer equipment head-to-toe including the brand's lightweight Vapor 1X skate that boosts speed and agility, and Nexus 1N stick that gives shooters pinpoint accuracy.
A new generation Vapor 1X skate arrives at retailers in late July. The Nexus 1N stick already is available.
Laine had 36 goals and 28 assists, and helped the Jets improve to 87 points. The 6-foot-4 right winger from Finland was the No. 2 overall selection in the 2016 draft.
Laine signed as a Bauer athlete in December and, like Matthews, wears Vapor 1X skates. Known for his quick shot and incredible release, Laine worked with the Bauer team to determine the Bauer Vapor 1X stick was the best model for his style of play. The Vapor 1X is Bauer's lightest stick ever, and has improved Quick Release Taper Technology for a faster release and increased shot loading.
Werenski, the eighth overall selection in the 2015 draft, led all rookie defensemen with 47 points on 11 goals and 36 assists. He played nearly 21 minutes per game and was a plus-17 as the Blue Jackets surged to a team-record 108 points and made the playoffs for the third time in franchise history.
Werenski, from Grosse Pointe, Michigan, wears Vapor 1X skates and uses a Nexus 1N stick.
ABOUT BAUER HOCKEY
Bauer Hockey is the world's most recognized designer, marketer and manufacturer of hockey equipment. Founded in Kitchener, Ontario in 1927, Bauer Hockey developed the first skate with a blade attached to a boot, forever changing the game of hockey. Since then, Bauer Hockey has continued to develop the most sought after products in the industry, including the widely successful SUPREME®, VAPOR® and NEXUS® lines of products.
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SOURCE Bauer Hockey