It’s no secret that, even 20 years later, I still love Pro Set trading cards. So when I found this holiday greeting card at The National back in August, I eagerly bought it. It was sent out by Pro Set in 1990–most likely to companies and suppliers who dealt with them, but it may have been sent out to Pro Set Gazette subscribers (though I cannot confirm that). Continue reading
This was one of the many oddball items I purchased at The National Sports Collectors’ Convention, way back in August: a holiday greeting card featuring then-future top prospect and soon-to-be first overall pick Eric Lindros.
I’ve kept this card under my proverbial hat until the time was right to show the rest of the hockey card-collecting world. That time being the holidays, of course. Continue reading
This came in an envelope postmarked December 19, 1990…
Midway through the 1990-91 season, the Chicago Blackhawks sent my Aunt Gayle this holiday greeting card. This card was sent to all their season ticket holders. My Aunt knew that I collected everything hockey, so she gave me this card for safe keeping. And here it is, 20 years later. Continue reading
From 1989 to 1992, my Aunt Gaylehad seasons’ tickets to the Chicago Blackhawks games. In December of ’89, the Blackhawks sent her this holiday card…
The front shows a Christmas tree, adorned with lights, a glowing Blackhawks logo and a silver ornament, reflecting an exciting scene from a Blackhawks game. Denis Savard, arms raised in the air, has scored against the New York Rangers. The crowd at old Chicago Stadium erupts in thunderous applause. Continue reading
Hallmark Hockey Greats, 2000
During the holiday season of 2000 Hallmark continued its line of “Hockey Greats” Keepsake Ornaments. Philadelphia Flyers forward Eric Lindros was chosen to be this year’s tree decoration. At that time, Lindros was at the top of his game, and was one of the best players in the NHL. However, he was not established as one of the all-time greats of hockey. Perhaps Bobby Orr or Patrick Roy would have made a better choice of players, but that’s neither here nor there. Lindros was still a superstar. Continue reading
Hallmark Hockey Greats, 1999
For their third ornament in the “Hockey Greats Series”, Hallmark decided to pick a long-retired hockey legend: Gordie Howe. Howe last played pro hockey in 1980, so I never saw him play. I still bought this ornament back in 1999, partially because I had the previous two (typical collector mentality, eh?).
This ornament feels very different than the prior two – Wayne Gretzky in 1997 and Mario Lemieux in 1998 – in that Howe was from a different time, having played the bulk of his career in the “Original Six” era. In a way, that makes this ornament feel more old-timey, like something you would hang from a Christmas tree. Continue reading
Hallmark Hockey Greats, 1998
Hallmark debuted its line of Hockey Greats Keepsakes Ornaments, releasing Wayne Gretzky as their first hockey ornament around Christmas of 1997. The next season, Hallmark continued the series, issuing a Mario Lemieux holida ornament in 1998. Lemieux had just retired (for the first time) at the end of the ’96-97 hockey season, so his achievements were still fresh in people’s minds. Like the previous year, this ornament also included an exclusive hockey card. Continue reading
Hallmark Hockey Greats, 1997
During the 1997 holiday season, Hallmark debuted its “Hockey Greats Series” of Christmas tree ornaments. Not surprisingly, The Great One himself, Wayne Gretzky, was the first player to be featured. Measuring about 4 1/2″ inches tall, this handcrafted, well-detailed ornament has Gretzky decked out in his New York Rangers jersey. Also included was a special Upper Deck trading card that was only available with this ornament. Continue reading