For those who may not know, Bauer offers three families of hockey sticks that feature different flex profiles that cater to different styles of play. Contrary to popular belief, the player’s position does not determine which Bauer stick they will benefit most from. Rather it is their shooting style that should determine whether one is a Supreme, Nexus or Vapor player. With that being said, let’s take a look at the Bauer Vapor Sticks first.
In the fall of 2013, we saw Bauer’s oldest stick family, the Vapors, release with the Bauer APX 2 Stick leading the way. This family has the quickest shot release because of its low kick point. Thus the Vapor Family is geared for the “finesse” shooter who doesn’t aggressively lean into their shots, but primarily uses a lot of wrist movement to get the puck on net. These are players are looking to get the puck off in a hurry and not shooting for huge slap shot power like Chara. A distinct and unique addition Bauer implemented into the Vapor sticks is the long-standing Intelli-Sense Flex Profile. Not only does it offer Bauer’s quickest release with the primary low kick point, but they engineered a secondary and much higher kick point that adds a little more power on big slap shots and one-timers. On the other side of the flex profile spectrum is Bauer’s second oldest family, the Supreme Sticks.
Hopefully soon, NHL players will begin debuting the new Supreme Family of sticks that could possibly have a similar setup as the newly announced skate line, with Supreme MX3 Skates as the flagship model. Currently, the TotalONE NXG and the Supreme Family have an Amplified Mid-Kick Point that’s geared for the polar opposite player from the Vapor. This is for the guy who aggressively leans into and loads up on all of their shots; regardless if it’s a wrist shot or a slap shot. This offers a much more powerful release and puts a ton of velocity on the puck.
Coming in April 2014, Bauer’s newest Nexus Family of hockey sticks makes its second line-release with the premier Nexus 8000 stick spearheading the movement. The first launch with the original Nexus 1000 came about in 2012 and made serious waves. Bauer designed this stick to bridge the gap between the Supreme and Vapor families, making sure every player has a flex profile that is a perfect fit. Bauer calls the the Nexus flex profile the Tru-Mid Flex Point and it offers a very traditional kick point. The center portion of the stick is very stiff but the ends (think upper handle and lower hosel near the blade) have been slightly softened, which gives the user a much more responsive feel without changing the integrity of the Tru-Mid Flex Profile. As described by Bauer’s Product Manager Evan Baker, the Nexus combines the best of both the Supreme and Vapor families, offering a Vapor-like quick release on wrist/snap shots but can give you thorough Supreme-like power on big slap shots and one-timers.