Face Time

1981-82 O-Pee-Chee #317 – Dave Farrish

Dave Farrish OPC Hockey CardI wonder why O-Pee-Chee even bothered including a card of Dave Farrish in their 1981-82 set if this was the best photo they had. Sure, the defenseman played 74 games for the Toronto Maple Leafs during the previous season…but he barely appears on his own card. You only catch a glimpse of his visage as he slightly leans over the boards of the penalty box, wistfully gazing upwards at the O-Pee-Chee logo floating above. Continue reading “Face Time”

Oldschool Penguins puck

I normally don’t collect hockey pucks, but I had to buy this one…

Pittsburgh Penguins PuckI picked it up not too long ago at a card show. I love the old “Penguin with a scarf” logo. This particular cartoon Penguin looks a little fatter than the one that was used later. The scarf adds both style and motion to the design. I’ve always found these two things hilarious–in both a good and bad way. I mean, the logo is kind of cartoony and foppish…but I guess that’s why I like it. It’s fun, and doesn’t take itself too seriously (aren’t we all tired of the “snarling animal” as a sports mascott?).

A ton of Young Guns

This week, I picked up a bunch of Upper Deck Young Guns rookie cards from various years.


I *finally* got a Patrick Kane Young Guns card! I hope to get another one for my collection soon. I hate paying more than $10 for a “new” card, but I had to have this one (I paid a *lot* more than $10 for it, that’s for sure).

I also purchased a large lot of Young Guns from various seasons. Below are some of my favorites…


Atlanta Thrashers prospect Ondrej Pavelec has done well in the AHL this season with the Chicago Wolves, my other hometown team.


Brett Sterling has been tearing things up for the Chicago Wolves for the past two seasons.


Dustin Byfuglien has become one of my favorite Chicago Blackhawks players. He’s normally a defenseman, but has been kicking butt as a forward.


Adam Burish led the team in penalties this past season, and is one of the unsung heroes on the Blackhawks.


This Patrick O’Sullivan rookie card brings me closer to completing my 2006-07 Upper Deck set.


Same goes with this Niklas Backstrom RC. Three more Young Guns, and I’ll have the whole 2006-07 Upper Deck hockey set.


Ryan Kesler was fourth on the Canucks in scoring, right behind team captain Markus Naslund and the Sedin twins. His career seems to be on the upswing.


Alas, poor Tuomo Ruutu. I get your rookie card after you got traded to the Carolina Hurricanes.


Technically, this Tyler Arnason Young Guns card was not his
rookie card.


I like the look of this Jordan Leopold rookie card, with the full body shot in the foreground, and the close up ghosted in the background.


Pavel Datsyuk is an awesome player. Too bad this Young Guns rookie card has a slight “ding” on the top edge. Still cool to own, though.


Kristian Huselius was second on team scoring for the Calgary Flames this past season. Why exactly did the Florida Panthers trade him?


Third overall in scoring for Carolina this year, this Erik Cole rookie card has a Beckett value of $10. Who knew?

Pittsburgh Penguins toothbrush

My sister gave this to me a few years ago. I still haven’t gotten around to opening and using it…and I probably never will:


Click on image to enlarge.

The Slap Shot Hockey Stick Toothbrush, made by a company aptly named Sportbrush, is “Your best shot against tooth decay.” It is a toothbrush that is shaped like a hockey stick, and comes with a black “self adhesive puck holder”, which you would mount on your bathroom wall and use to hold the toothbrush. There’s something ironic about using a puck to hold a hockey stick.) Continue reading “Pittsburgh Penguins toothbrush”

A Tale of Two Teds

1975-76 Topps card #244 – Ted Irvine

Ted Irvine Topps Hockey CardWhat’s wrong with this picture?

Obviously, this card has been painted over, to change the player’s uniform to that of the St. Louis Blues, mid-1970s. Whenever Topps (or O-Pee-Chee) spent time retouching a player photo, the final result ended up looking like a painting with a superimposed floating head.

The problem here is the floating head belongs to Ted Harris and not Ted Irvine. Continue reading “A Tale of Two Teds”

2006-07 Power Play box break


I went to a card shop on Sunday, and purchased–among other things–a box of 2006-07 Power Play hockey cards. In retrospect, I paid more than I should have for the box–I now see that they don’t sell for much on eBay…damn. But at the time, the price that I paid seemed like a good deal–the card shop owner marked down the price, since it was last year’s product.

I love opening packs, and I figured a full box would make me a complete base set, plus maybe give me a chance to pick up a few special cards. Besides, there’s “one jersey card per box, on average”.

Without further ado, here’s what these 24 packs yielded:

– 131 base cards
– 6 Prospects (Yan Stastny, Marc-Antoine Pouliot, Steve Reiger, Cole Jarrett, Matt Carle & Jeremy Williams)
– 2 Goal Robbers (Manny Fernandez & Marty Turco)
– 3 In Action (Sidney Crosby, Henrik Zetterberg & Matts Sundin)
– 1 Last Man Standing (Chris Simon)
– 1 “Specialist” jersey swatch card (Brad Richards)

I’ve got mixed feelings about these cards.

The set, overall, is just OK. One hundred base cards, and the design is not all that great. I did get a complete base set though, which is always nice.

The Brad Richards card isn’t really worth all that much–I see two currently *not* selling on eBay for 99 cents each, and one that did not sell about two weeks back. It’s the risk you take. Sometimes you get a well-sought after jersey or autograph card, but most times you don’t. No big deal. Richards is a good player, so I don’t mind having this card around if I can’t trade it to someone.

The 30 rookie cards in this set–of which I got six of–are nothing special, either. No Malkin, Staal or Paul Stastny (though his brother Yan is in this set). Why go through the trouble of making the rookie cards six per box if they are going to be of mostly ho-hum players?

I guess that’s why these cards don’t sell for all that much. But then again, I am forgetting *why* I collect. Sure, value is a part of it–I’d be lying if I said that was not a part of it. But what is, and always will be, the most important is the fun factor.

And what was fun, though, is opening the packs, and building a set (yes, even if it’s just a 100-card base set).

Beckett Hockey Magazine suggested that if you want your girlfriend to like, or at least understand, your hobby, then you should ask her to open some packs of cards with you. Well, it worked for me.

After going to the card shop, my girlfriend Shellie and I got dinner and opened some of the packs before dinner, and the rest over desert. She seemed to enjoy opening these packs even more than I did. Whereas I would open the pack, glance at the names, and see if I got any special cards, she would look at each and every card, and notice certain things about many of them. She mentioned that Todd Bertuzzi looked intense and creepy (“You have no idea!” I told her), and the fact that the Ducks are no longer “Mighty”.

So, OK, I overpaid a bit for these “unpopular” cards. But I did get a complete base set, a Sidney Crosby “In Action” card, a lackluster jersey card (white swatch, oh yeah!), some doubles to trade…and the enjoyment of opening some packs. I guess that’s not so bad.

Sooner or later, I will post a review about this set.

Super Soviet Sticker

1979 Panini Hockey Stickers #140 – Vladislav Tretiak

Vladislav Tretiak Panini Hockey StickerAny Canadian over 40 years of age no doubt remembers the 1972 Summit Series, which pitted Canada’s best players against the best players from the Soviet Union. It was a grueling, eight game series – the Canadian Team barely coming out ahead, winning one more game than their opponents. One big reason that the series was so close was because of the amazing play of the Soviet goaltender, Vladislav Tretiak. Continue reading “Super Soviet Sticker”

Review: 1988-89 Panini Hockey Stickers

Quite possibly one of the best hockey sets – ever!

1988-89 Panini Sticker AlbumThe 1988-1989 Panini hockey sticker set was a great series, and possibly the best one a new hockey fan from that era could hope for. Way back in early ’89, I “discovered” hockey when I, at 14 years of age, accidentally put on the wrong channel (I was flipping between SCTV reruns and a biopic on Martin Luther King Jr.). I ended up catching the last five minutes of a Chicago Blackhawks game. Tuning into a game of theirs a few days later, I was hooked–and I needed to start collecting hockey cards.

1988-89 Panini Stickers #24 - Doug WilsonBut hockey cards were hard to find in Chicago in 1989. The only place you could find them was at baseball card stores. However, my local grocery store happened to sell Panini hockey stickers. I decided to start collecting them. Why not?–a pack of six stickers was 25 cents, and the album was only 69 cents.

Little did I know how useful this set would be to help me understand the great game of hockey. Continue reading “Review: 1988-89 Panini Hockey Stickers”