Book Review: He Shoots, He Saves

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I had high hopes when reading “He Shoots, He Saves: The Story of Hockey’s Collectible Treasures.” It isn’t every day that a book about hockey collectibles comes along. Plus, the book is written by Jon Waldman, who co-authored the excellent sports trading card book “Got ‘Em, Got ‘Em, Need ‘Em,” and is a regular writer for “Beckett Hockey Magazine.” Even better, Waldman got this book published without making it your typical price guide that slavishly informs us what every scrap of paper, ink or fabric is supposedly “worth.” That’s great, because while price guides may give values, they don’t tell the whole story.

Unfortunately, with heavy heart I must confess that “He Shoots, He Saves” did not meet my high hopes. Although well written, too much of the book talks about the teams and players, while very little actually talks about the collectibles. Continue reading

Review: 2014-15 Chicago Wolves Hero Cards

rattieThe past several years, the Chicago Wolves have offered “Hero Cards” at their games — both as a giveaways and available for purchase at the concession stands. The oversized cards measure a little less than 8.5″ wide by 11″ tall and feature some of the most popular players on the team. Putting together a set of these is challenging, since they are usually issued one at a time. Their large size makes getting them home in good shape another problem. Continue reading

Deja Vu Tuesday: Ryan Johansen

johansen_2014-15The photograph on Ryan Johansen’s 2014-15 Upper Deck trading card is bad. No, it isn’t quite as terrible as the infamous Bryan Pitton Score rookie card from a few years back. Nor is it the worst card of all time, though it is the worst card from this year’s UD Series One. Seeing the back of a player on the front of his own card is unremarkable. In fact, this photo is so unremarkable that apparently no one at Upper Deck noticed that they used the exact same photo on Johansen’s card from the previous season. Continue reading

Pack Break x 6: Eraseez Collectible Hockey Eraser Game

packagePaper football is about to get a run for its money. Eraseez is a new line of collectible erasers by Bulls i Toy that double as a tabletop hockey game. Each pack retails for around $3 and contains two puck erasers, two sheets of stickers for the pucks and one hockey stick eraser.

pack_1The puck erasers are 1.5″ in diameter, and the stick eraser is about 2.5″ long. The logo sticker and NHL shield sticker are circular and meant to be affixed to the pucks to make them slippery.

sticksStick blade erasers come in at least three different colors: orange, red and blue.

face-offThe top of the stick blades have a hole in them so you can put in a pencil to make a hockey stick. All you need is a number two pencil (always bring a number two pencil!) and a smooth surface and you are ready to play.

puck_in_piecesThe puck erasers — referred to as puzzle erasers on the packaging — can be broken into three pieces. I was told that this was “just for fun,” but I would argue that this allows you to either make the puck lighter for a game play variation (if you pull off one or both surfaces before affixing the stickers) or to use the smaller surface “parts” as erasers. Speaking of which…

erased…Eraseez actually work as erasers. Usually, “fun” erasers look cool but don’t work all that well, but Eraseez can be used to eliminate your mistakes. Well, mistakes made in pencil, anyway.

Bulls i Toys generously provided six packs of Eraseez. Let’s see what we got: Continue reading

Daytona 500 winner Joey Logano played hockey in his youth

Joey_Logano_frontNASCAR driver Joey Logano won the Daytona 500 yesterday. At 24 years of age, he became the second-youngest driver to win that race. But half a lifetime ago, Logano was at a crossroads. He excelled at racing, but also played hockey. Just as Jeff Skinner selected hockey over figure skating and Tom Glavine opted for baseball instead of hockey, a young Joey Logano also had to make a choice.

Continue reading