Review: 1997-98 Springfield Falcons

Nice design, two future stars, make for a worthwhile set

1997-987 Springfield Falcons - Shane Doan Not everyone who laces ’em up in the minors will make it to the NHL, but it is always cool to see the players who do at a point in their career before they become famous. For me, a minor league team set is worth picking up if it has just one player in it who goes on to NHL stardom.

The 1997-98 Springfield Falcons team set  features cards of not one, but two players who would go onto NHL stardom–Shane Doan and Daniel Briere. And the design isn’t the usual over-designed nonsense of the late 1990s. Continue reading “Review: 1997-98 Springfield Falcons”

Review: 1972-73 Los Angeles Sharks

A mediocre set for a mediocre team

Alton WhiteBefore the Sharks took up residency in San Jose, there was another team by the same name. The Los Angeles Sharks – no relation to the current team in San Jose – was a founding member of the World Hockey Association (WHA). Unlike some of the luckier teams in the WHA who had the benefit of a Bobby Hull or Gordie Howe playing for them, the Sharks did not have much in the way of star power. They finished 6th out of 12 teams in 1972-73 and dead last during their second and final season. In their first year, they issued an ugly set of 19 cards. Continue reading “Review: 1972-73 Los Angeles Sharks”

Review: 1972-73 Quebec Nordiques

Twenty-one cards from the upstart team’s first season

Richard Brodeur

The World Hockey Association was founded in 1972, and placed several teams into markets that yearned to have an NHL presence. One founding member of the WHA was the Quebec Nordiques, giving the province of Quebec another team to call their own. Longtime Montreal Canadiens’ defenseman J.C. Tremblay was the Nordiques’ first captain, while a 20-year old Richard Brodeur was breaking into pro hockey as the Nords’ backup. Released during the season was a postcard set featuring the Quebec’s inaugural roster. Continue reading “Review: 1972-73 Quebec Nordiques”

Review: 1972-73 Atlanta Flames Postcards

Color action photography makes for a worthwhile set

Pat QuinnTeam postcard sets seemed to be all the rage in the 1970s and 1980s. Many NHL and WHA teams gave out postcards picturing the players – either in response to an autograph request or as a giveaway at a game. In their inaugural season, the Atlanta Flames issued a simple, yet fantastic, set of postcards that featured practically everyone on their team. Continue reading “Review: 1972-73 Atlanta Flames Postcards”

Review: 1990-91 Boston Bruins team set

Your 1990 Stanley Cup runner-ups!

1990-91 Bruins Team SetProduced by a company called Sports Action, this team set was sold at the Boston Bruins Pro Shop during the 1990-91 season. Appealing in its simplistic design, the 24-card set came in a cardboard and polybag package that was stapled shut.  Continue reading “Review: 1990-91 Boston Bruins team set”

Review: 2007-08 Chicago Blackhawks team set

Featuring 1st NHL cards of Kane & Toews

2007-08 Blackhawks Patrick Kane

Ten bucks usually does not go far in hockey card collecting these days, but in 2007-08 it could get you a complete team-issued set of Chicago Blackhawks trading cards. These were the first cards to show Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews in ‘Hawks sweaters. Sold in the lobby at Blackhawks home games during the 2007-08 campaign, a $10 charitable donation would net you this set of oversized trading cards. Continue reading “Review: 2007-08 Chicago Blackhawks team set”

Review: 1985-86 University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs team set

Brett Hull pre-RC puts this overproduced set on the map

1985-86 UMD Bulldogs #28 - Brett HullDuring the 1985-86 season, a company called Tim & Larry’s Sports Cards in Duluth, MN released a 36 card set of the University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs hockey team. The WCHA Champions the prior year, the team had another reason for being a popular draw – their captain was Brett Hull, son of the legendary Bobby Hull. Brett was a top player in his two seasons with UMD, and is the main reason why this set – despite being 25 years old – is not too difficult to find. Continue reading “Review: 1985-86 University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs team set”

Review: 1983 Canadian National Junior Team set

21-card set of Canada’s top junior players is pure gold

The 1983 Canadian National Junior Team set was one of my “Holy Grails” as a hockey card collector. I first laid eyes upon this set at a sports card show way back in 1991, when $100 for a set of cards was a “lot of money” for me. Hell, that’s still a lot of money, but it’s worth it. This amazing postcard-sized set, which was released during the 1983 World Junior Championships, features most of the young men who played for Canada’s Junior Team – including 17-year old prospects and future Hall of Famers Mario Lemieux and Steve Yzerman. Continue reading “Review: 1983 Canadian National Junior Team set”

Review: 1999-00 Cleveland Lumberjacks team set

Pre-NHL card of goalie Nabokov keep this set from being forgettable

1999-00 Cleveland Lumberjacks - Evgeni Nabokov

Given away at a home game in November 1999, the Cleveland Lumberjacks team set contains 24 cards. The ‘Jacks were a minor-league hockey team in the old International Hockey League (IHL). Formerly in Muskegon, the Lumberjacks were the top minor-league affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins for 14 years until 1997. In 1999, the team became affiliated with the Chicago Blackhawks. Thus, this set has mostly Blackhawks’ prospects and minor leaguers. It does, however, have a card of future superstar San Jose Sharks goalie Evgeni NabokovContinue reading “Review: 1999-00 Cleveland Lumberjacks team set”

Review: 1985-86 Winnipeg Jets team set

Above average photos and player selection for 80’s set

1985-86 Winnipeg Jets - Thomas SteenThe 1985-86 Winnipeg Jets Police Safety Tips set is comprised of 24 cards that were issued in 12 two-card panels. These cards are also a bit taller and a bit wider than your standard hockey card. The thing that I enjoy so much about these “team issue” sets is that they feature many players who did not get a Topps or O-Pee-Chee card in a given year. This set not only has cards of lesser known players – it has a few cards of guys that lasted nary a season. Continue reading “Review: 1985-86 Winnipeg Jets team set”