CCM Axis 2 Goalie Gear Review + Everything We Know

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We’ve been getting a ton of questions recently about when the CCM Axis 2 Goalie Gear line will release. The CCM Axis 2 goalie gear line is the latest (as of 2022) line of gear from goalie gear manufacturer, CCM. It follows the 2021 release of the CCM E Flex 5 line. Out of the gate, CCM has changed quite a bit with this set. While the blocker has made dramatic steps, the glove (I personally feel) has taken a step backwards.

On the pads, the Axis 2 are a harder pad than anything ever created by the company. I love this, as it gives the goalie more opportunity to improve their rebound control by kicking pucks far out of the danger zone on any potential rebound. While we’re still very much in the actual testing phase of the gear, these are certain to be one of the top lines of goalie pads this year.

The CCM Axis 2 Goalie gear line will officially release for public sale in April / May of 2022. This has been confirmed by CCM Goalie.

What’s the difference between CCM Axis 2 and CCM E Flex 5?

The main difference between CCM Axis 2 and CCM E Flex 5 is, the gear is completely redesigned. Aside from building materials used, the CCM Axis 2 line will be dramatically different from any set of gear CCM has designed in just about every facet. The glove will feature a newly redesigned interior, specifically built to model the goalies hand. The pads will feature a new knee pad landing system, unlike anything else built by the company previously.

What do the CCM Axis 2 goalie pads look like?

While the new CCM Axis 2 goalie pads are rumored to be unlike anything ever built by legendary gear manufacturer CCM, we’re starting to see photos of the exterior look of the pads.

The photo here is one of the first photos of the new CCM Axis 2 goalie pads in action.

The majority of goalies wearing CCM Axis at the professional level have started to switch to the new Axis 2 line, with more photos and individual specification photos to come.

One of the things that CCM has lost in recent years has been the number of NHL goalies wearing Axis 2. When CCM lost it’s contract with Lefevre, True Temper Sports swooped in and locked up the well known gear manufacturer, located in Canada.

As a result, the majority of NHL goalies wearing CCM gear, specifically those who had been in E Flex gear, switched over to True for the 2020-2021 NHL season. We fully expect to see more goalies wearing CCM gear at the NHL level in the next year to year and a half.

CCM Axis 2 Goalie Pads

The new (for 2022) CCM Axis 2 line is here, with an overhaul to the design of the pads and big changes to the glove. This lineup is one of the biggest advancements the gear manufacturer has made since their parting of ways with Lefevre.

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CCM Axis 2 Goalie Gear Review

We’re starting to get our first looks at the new CCM Axis 2 goalie pad lineup. There are a couple of huge changes with this line, which we’ll dive into below.

  • Top Line Set: CCM Axis Pro (available in Senior sizing and custom for Intermediate)
  • Tier 2 Set: CCM Axis 2.9 (the top option outside of custom for Intermediate)
    • Internally, the quality of the foam is a slight decrease as compared to the CCM Axis 2 (Pro)
  • Tier 3 Set: CCM Axis 2.5 (built for Junior goalies)
    • Only offered in Junior sizing
    • Not available in Intermediate and Senior Sizing
    • Off-set toe bridge, allows the skate to make contact with the ice easier

At the Junior and Intermediate levels, the gloves have been decreased 2-3% in size. With the new CCM Axis 2 line, CCM completely rebuilt their parts, allowing the company to decrease the size of the gloves on smaller pads.

Custom CCM Axis 2 Pads

  • CCM Total Custom + All Out: everything in “Total Custom Pro”, includes a custom graphic
  • CCM Total Custom Pro: change pad construction materials, SpeedSkin, etc
  • CCM Total Custom: the standard customization program offered by CCM, allows goalie to customize everything up to the materials of the pad

 

First look at the new CCM Axis 2 Goalie Pads

Photo by @beau_motzko

CCM Axis 2 Initial On Ice Testing

We’ve officially received our set of CCM Axis 2 goalie pads for on-ice testing. With every gear release, the question of “what’s actually changed?” is always top of mind. With many releases, outside of new marketing material and an opportunity for a brand to say that they’ve released a new set of gear, there isn’t always a ton that’s changed.

With the new CCM Axis 2 goalie pads, there’s quite a bit that’s different. We’ll dive into all of it in each individual piece of gear with the set.

CCM Axis 2 Goalie Pads Testing

For those familiar with CCM, the Axis line has been their “Modern” lineup. The E-Flex pads have traditionally been more of a hybrid pad, featuring a softer pad face meant for more precise rebound control and stopping pucks that hit the body. In the past 3 years, CCM has taken both of these pad lines and modified them to be almost exactly the same in terms of the pad hardness.

Both the CCM Axis 2 and the CCM E Flex 5 pads feature a pad face that goes away from a softer style, to more of a “hard” pad face. The harder pad face is designed to create maximum puck bounce which in turn makes rebounds exit the body quicker, allowing for more time for the goalie to react to the next shot.

The days of soft goalie pads are long since past. Goalies need more time than ever to respond to loose pucks that have rebounded from the body and the CCM Axis 2 line is designed to maximize this recovery time.

Our thoughts on the feel of the pads

  • Very hard pad face, possibly the hardest pad face CCM has ever designed
  • Extremely light weight – while there isn’t a huge difference in the weight of these between the E Flex 5, the CCM Axis 2 are some of the lightest pads on the market
  • Responsive. With a stiffer pad face, responsiveness is a huge concern. The CCM Axis 2 are an extremely light-weight, responsive goalie pad
  • Firm, yet comfortable knee block. Initially, I’m very impressed by this. CCM has utilized a new knee block material that appears to be far more durable than the traditional material used (think, rubbery / malable as compared to cloth)
CCM Axis 2 Goalie Pads

The new (for 2022) CCM Axis 2 line is here, with an overhaul to the design of the pads and big changes to the glove. This lineup is one of the biggest advancements the gear manufacturer has made since their parting of ways with Lefevre.

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CCM Axis 2 Blocker Testing

When it comes to the blocker, many goalies will tell you “a blocker is a blocker”. As we all know, a blocker is not simply a blocker. A great blocker has to do a couple of things very well.

  1. It must be mobile, so that the goalie can get excellent rotation to control rebounds while allowing the goalie to utilize and comfortably grip their stick
  2. The blocker must be firm, so that the goalie can push rebounds quickly out of high danger scoring areas
  3. The blocker must protect the thumb and inside of the goalies hands, as this is the most likely area to create injury while playing

Updates to the CCM Axis 2 Blocker

  1. Litecore – a thinner blocker board that is lightweight and designed to improve the overall balance of the blocker
  2. FlexMotion 2 – adjustments to the wrist area of the blocker, designed for better puck handling ability and an increased (full) range of motion
  3. Molded Sidewall – added stiffness and a responsive feel and better shock absorption of the side wall of the blocker
  4. Dura-Palm – a change in the suede used in the palm of the blocker built for better grip and improved fit and feel

Previously, I’ve not been super impressed with CCM blockers. While they do a great job of being firm, allowing for excellent rebound control, they have always lacked mobility.

After using the new Axis 2 blocker, I can say that this is absolutely not the case this time around. While I feel that CCM continues to put too much padding in the thumb and inner hand area (especially around the thumb), the Axis 2 is one of the more mobile blockers the company has built.

In terms of mobility, which, as far as I’m concerned – is the single most important feature of a blocker, the CCM Axis 2 is very mobile. This blocker is a big improvement over the bulkier E Flex 5.

Additionally, CCM has made quite the improvement in the wrist area. For whatever reason, as compared to a nimble blocker like that of the Bauer Hyperlite or Bauer UltraSonic (and now the Bauer Mach), CCM has seen competitors far out-perform the models they’ve built. With the Axis 2 blocker, they’ve narrowed that gap considerably.

The major improvements in the Axis 2 blocker, outside of anything technology related the company will tell you, are these;

  1. The blocker is less restrictive in the thumb area, still providing a high level of protection to pucks sliding up the stick and in the inner hand
  2. The wrist mobility of the Axis 2 is better than anything previously built by the company

CCM Axis 2 Glove Testing

In any set of goalie gear, the glove is arguably the most important part. Of course, deciding whether or not the pads fit well and cater to your style of play is important. However, if they do not, you will simply not choose to order them.

The glove must be un-restricive and easy to use. Goalies can control the outcome of a game with their glove hand more than any other piece of equipment. This may be arguable, but for the sake of our CCM Axis 2 goalie glove review, let’s say that it is.

CCM Axis 2 Testing Data

Graph shows a 23% decrease in closure force on the CCM Axis 2 Glove

In our conversations with CCM, they noted that they get feedback on the stiffness of their gloves. With the CCM Axis 2, there is a 23.2% decrease in closing force compared to the CCM Axis.

In layman’s terms, the glove is easier to close than anything CCM has built previously.Β 

Out of the gate, the most significant change with the CCM Axis 2 glove is the lack of finger gussets. There are no finger gussets on the CCM Axis 2 glove. The glove uses “Form Fitting” finger gussets. CCM has said that right out of the gate, this won’t feel exactly how it should. The goal here is to utilize a skate oven to help force the form to fit the fingers naturally.

The internals of the glove are missing. Imagine an actual glove, versus a mitten. The inside of the glove is missing finger holes for the hands. Initially, I’m not a huge fan. It will be interesting to see what the sentiment of other goalies is. CCM noted that in their own product testing, goalies noted that they actually preferred the lack of finger gussets.

This is a major change in goalie gloves. Something like this has never been done before.Β 

With that being said, this is easily something that could become the mainstream, depending on performance on the ice. If we’re able to get used to this feeling, this will be one of the most significant improvements made to a goalie glove in the past 10 years.

The major improvements of the CCM Axis 2 goalie glove are these;

  1. Lack of finger gussets, CCM has introduced the “Form Fit” finger system. As stated above, I personally am not a major fan of this. Initially, this gives the feeling of less control and it actually makes the glove harder to close. The upside here is, if a goalie is able to adapt to this, the closure of the glove will be tighter and more complete than anything else currently on the market
  2. Multiple adjustment straps (two) on the internal of the glove. Gives the goalie more opportunity to make the lack of finger channels work for them.
  3. Glove is under 1000 grams (lightest glove ever built by CCM)
  4. Changed wrist strap position, fully adjustable 3 point anchor system called the “Cross Form Strap”

CCM Axis 2 Chest Protector Testing

CCM has come a long way in the chest protector game. The CCM Axis 2 is a tank of a chest protector, in our opinion, it’s easily the best chest and arm unit they’ve ever built.

What’s new on the CCM Axis 2 Chest Protector

  • VentTech – heat management system in the chest area of the chest protector, designed to allow the chest protector to better absorb shock from pucks as well as give better breathability to the unit
  • ADPT Flex – addition of a new piece along the belly area of the chest protector. This has the ability to flex and extend, designed to work with goalies who tuck their chest protector as well as those who do not.
  • D3O Core Shield – in the sternum, clavicle and added to the rib area of the chest protector.

If you’re ordering an Axis 2 Chest Protector, it is only available at the Senior level. For goalies in Intermediate or Junior, the only model offered by CCM is the CCM E Flex.

CCM Axis 2 Goalie Stick

CCM has faced opposition in their sticks. New for this year, they’re introducing a new Carbon Fiber design.

CCM will not offer a CCM Axis 2 goalie stick, all sticks will be CCM E Flex.

Rating the CCM Axis 2 Goalie Pads

When CCM parted ways with Lefevre several years ago, there were big questions for the manufacturer. Many NHL goalies ultimately chose to wear True (now powered by Lefevre).

This is an excellent set of gear that is extremely lightweight, durable, and built for maximum performance. Aside from our negative feelings on the glove, I do feel that this is something a goalie “can get used to”. The gear itself is very durable and I love the construction of the pad. The overall design is different than the majority of gear we’ve seen built by CCM and we’re very excited to see these in action at the NHL level next season.

CCM Axis 2 Goalie Pads

The new (for 2022) CCM Axis 2 line is here, with an overhaul to the design of the pads and big changes to the glove. This lineup is one of the biggest advancements the gear manufacturer has made since their parting of ways with Lefevre.

Buy at Goalie Monkey Buy at Pure Goalie
We appreciate your support! At no extra cost to you, we may earn a small commission if you purchase a product through GoalieCoaches.com.