Monday, September 21, 2009

Mark Messier visits Bright Hockey Center, new helmets for Crimson

Last year, Brendan Shanahan skated with the Crimson for several days as he prepared to sign with the New Jersey Devils midway through the NHL season.

This year, six-time Stanley Cup winner Mark Messier dropped by the Bright Hockey Center in the preseason with a different agenda in mind. Friday afternoon, Messier visited the Bright with an unusual delivery.

The ex-Ranger and Oiler captain, now in his fifth year of retirement, had no interest in lacing up the skates with the Crimson, but instead delivered a batch of new equipment to the men's locker room - brand-new Cascade M11 hockey helmets. Messier has spent much of his retirement time working on the "The Messier Project," which is a collaborative effort between Messier and Cascade, the hockey equipment manufacturer, to combat concussions at all levels of competitive hockey.

The Crimson, most of whom had previously worn Reebok helmets, will be the first full team to don the new Cascade helmet. With advanced foam padding technology, the helmet design is intended to protect better than current-generation helmets against both minor collisions and catastrophic hits.

WHDH 7 Boston joined Messier and the Crimson in the Bright Center locker room, and produced a short video feature including interviews with head coach Ted Donato, captain Alex Biega, senior defenseman Ian Tallett, and Messier.

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