With the 2012-13 hockey card collecting season around the corner–actual hockey season pending–now is a good time to take a look back at some of the sets released during 2011-12.
Many online sellers like DA Card World and Blowout Cards have dropped the prices on boxes of 2011-12 hockey cards. Likewise, many eBay sellers will try to sell off their 2011-12 sets for bargain prices before collectors get too focused on buying the new cards. This makes for an advantageous time to go back and pick up anything you missed out on.
Perfection. There is no other word to better describe the 1984-85 O-Pee-Chee Hockey set. Hands down, it is the best hockey card set from the 1980s. It might even be the best hockey set made during the “O-Pee-Chee Era” (1968-1993). The ’84-85 O-Pee-Chee set achieves perfection because of its fantastic design, excellent photography and comprehensive player selection – not to mention that it includes the rookie cards of five future Hall of Fame players. Continue reading “Review: 1984-85 O-Pee-Chee Hockey”
There are hockey card sets dedicated to goaltenders. There are hockey card sets dedicated to leading scorers. And then, there’s Fleer Throwbacks.
At a glance:
– 2002-03 Fleer Throwbacks
– 91 cards
– 1 “bonus” Bob Probert card
– Size: 2 1/2″ x 3 1/2″
– Download Checklist
The term “throwback” implies something that hearkens back to an earlier time period or age. The 2002-03 Fleer Throwbacks hockey set features 91 former players who aptly fit that description – men who were tough enough to play in any era. Most of the players in this set were known for their rough-and-tumble style of play, while others were just gritty. No, this isn’t merely an homage to “goons” or “enforcers” – though Fleer Throwbacks has plenty of those, too.
Released in April 2010, the O-Pee-Chee Update Set featured 200 cards that extended the O-Pee-Chee set issued earlier in the 2009-10 hockey season. This was a smart move by Upper Deck, who currently leases the “O-Pee-Chee” brand name from Topps.
In 2009, Upper Deck released a 200-card Update Set for its 2008-09 O-Pee-Chee set, but in 5-card packs. Three out of 5 of the cards in the pack were parallels, making this a particularly hard set to piece together. Fortunately, Upper Deck did not repeat that mistake, and instead issued the 2009-10 Update as a pre-collated factory set.Continue reading “Review: 2009-10 O-Pee-Chee Update”
For a third year in a row, Topps released a 198-card hockey set. The 1988-89 Topps Hockey set featured bright colors, quirky design elements and some good rookie cards too. It also used a press conference photo for the first time. Continue reading “Review: 1988-89 Topps Hockey”
1979-80 was an epic year for hockey for so many reasons. It was a changing of the guard, with Wayne Gretzky playing his first NHL season, and Gordie Howe playing in his last. It was also the first season after the NHL absorbed four WHA (World Hockey Association) teams. And it was a year that a team of Americans would pull off one of the biggest miracles on ice. But that’s another story.
For the fourth year in a row, Upper Deck has leased the name “O-Pee-Chee” from Topps in order to brand a set of hockey cards. Overtly emblazoning the O-Pee-Chee logo and featuring Wayne Gretzky on the box and wrapper, the set is clearly meant to appeal to old school collectors who cut their card-collecting teeth during the 1970s and 1980s. And for the most part, it will. Comprising the set are 500 base cards, 50 short-printed Marquee Rookies and 50 short-printed Legends.
Victory-like set is un-victorious in making an impression
In 2008, former super-pest Claude Lemieux came out of retirement. So did Collector’s Choice hockey cards. After a ten-year hiatus, Upper Deck has dusted off this brand of low-price cards. First produced in 1995, and lasting three seasons, Collector’s Choice was intended to be “kid-friendly” with its price – about a buck a pack – in a market that was rapidly become less affordable for younger collectors. But Lemieux’s comeback was short-lived – he retired after the Sharks were eliminated from the 2009 playoffs. Collector’s Choice’s comeback might be short-lived too. Continue reading “Review: 2008-09 Collector’s Choice”
Really, really, really old school design makes for an interesting distraction
Retro-themed sets based on early 20th century design – such as Upper Deck’s “Champ’s” brand of hockey cards, or Topps “Alan & Ginther” baseball cards – are a popular trend with collectors right now. While few can afford the original cards of Art Ross or Georges Vezina, many still can appreciate the look and feel of current cards that base their designs on these old sets. Earlier this decade, Topps made an initial attempt to make a set of neo-retro hockey cards, naming it “C55” and basing the design on a set of cards that is almost a century old. Continue reading “Review: 2003-04 Topps C55 Hockey”