Building the set of my dreams…

I’ve always wanted a complete set of 1963-64 Parkhurst hockey cards. Since a set is very expensive, I figured I’d try and build a set one card at a time. I decided to start at the top and work my way down…

1963-64 Parkhurst Gordie HoweGordie Howe is the most expensive single in the set. This one is not in great shape. It is yellowed and there is a crease across Howe’s face. There is a pin hole right above his head which has since been filled in with blue ballpoint pen.

And yet, I don’t care. Since I don’t have $400 for an EXMT Howe card, I figured that $40 for this one–despite its poor condition–would be well worth it. Even if I get all 99 cards in comparable condition, I would be ecstatic.

One down, 98 to go…

Brodeur vs. Hextall Table Hockey satire video

From the 1997 NHL Awards this is a fake commercial for the “Brodeur-Hextall Table Hockey Game”. I actually found this one quite funny “back in the day”:

A few things I’d like to point out:

  • Dig that DONK!!! sound when the puck hits the net.
  • Those table hockey figurines are from the “Wayne Gretzky Hockey” table hockey game of the 1990s. The table hockey game was made by Kevin’s Sports, then Buddy L, then Playtoy. To this day, it remains my favorite table hockey game ever.
  • Those two kids can’t act, and their voices sound dubbed over. Notice that what they say doesn’t match their lips.

“Better pull your goalie! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!:”

More reasons to love The Onion

The Onion–a satire newspaper published in the U.S.–is probably the only newspaper I read consistently. Sad but true. And oh so funny. Every now and then they lampoon hockey in their Sports section. Here are some of the more recent riffs–all Red Wings related, given their success:


Giant Squid Thrown On Ice To Celebrate Red Wings Hat Trick


Evil Red Wings Owner Wario Lemieux Steals Stanley Cup


Chris Osgood Gets To Third Base With Stanley Cup
This one is a full article, and a little off color.

Also,, there’s a good chance that people who aren’t video game player will get the “Wario Lemieux” reference. Mario Lemieux was nicknamed “Super Mario” in the 1990s after the popular video game character Mario from the Super Mario Bros. games. Wario, with his big nose and twisty mustache, is the evil version of Mario.

Sal is moving…

Sorry, no pictures…but I promise that this is interesting and worth reading.

Recently, I took one giant stride towards “acting like an adult” when I decided to move in with my girlfriend Shellie. More accurately, we decided to move in with each other. But she isn’t moving in at my place, and I’m not moving in at hers; instead, we are getting a “new” place together.

I am both excited and overwhelmed. So much to do…so little time to do extracurricular stuff, like update Puck Junk with new articles.

My planned move day is this Saturday. In the interim, I have been slowly moving things to the new place, which is conveniently 1/2 block away from my current place of residence.

I have been a man of many hobbies, from collecting GI Joe and Star Wars figures, to collecting vintage Transformers–including rare Japanese imports. And, let us not forget hockey cards and collectibles. Right now, hockey seems to be my “big thing”. I’ve never gotten tired of collecting hockey cards…but there have been years when I have taken a break from it. Eight years ago, I was really into Transformers. Four years ago, my number one hobby was GI Joe action figures (from the 1980s to present).

In the past few years, I have sold off much of my toy collection. Many times, I’d ask myself “Why did I buy this?” As in, “Why did I buy these bootleg Transformers toys?” Or, “Why did I buy four of this particular GI Joe figure?”. Or “Why the hell did I decide to start collecting Captain Power, Ronin Warriors, etc. etc?”

However, I have never regretted purchasing a hockey card. Sure, I’ve sold or traded cards, but only my doubles, or to get cards I really wanted. My Pro Set cards from 1990-91 are as meaningful to me now as they were back in 1990-91.

So, I’ve decided to concentrate most of my collecting efforts on hockey cards. There is just so much variety, so much history…so much undiscovered cool stuff out there, that I feel that this is a hobby I’ll never bore of. After all, it has been almost two decades.

Back to my move. One of the bedrooms in this new apartment will be for my stuff–a haven for Sal, and where no dogs shall roam (my girlfriend has three basset hounds–good dogs, but old cards do smell like gum, and dogs like to chew on things). One of my big plans for this room is to “consolidate the collection”. I have a lot of binders full of complete hockey sets–some of them are here, but most are at my Grandma’s house. Once I am settled in, I am going to purchase some tall bookshelves to store and showcase my card collection. I’ve wanted to do this for a long time, and I am excited that I finally can.

I’m also going to frame and hang many of the autographed photos I’ve acquired throughout the years, including Denis Savard, Patrick Roy, Doug Wilson, Gump Worsley, Guy Lafleur, Marcel Dionne, Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews and Al MacInnis.

My goal is for this room to look cool–but not too cluttered.

So, I won’t be updating this site for at least a week. I won’t have internet access at my new place until at least the middle of next week. Until then, I’ll be unpacking, building shelves, and doing the other two hundred things that need doing when you move to a new place.

Luc Bourdon is dead

bourdon_ripVancouver Canucks defenseman Luc Bourdon died on Thursday when he crashed his motorcycle into a semi truck. The Hockey News article regarding this can bee seen here.

Coincidentally, I traded away two Luc Bourdon cards earlier in the week–a Young Guns, and a game used card.

Upon hearing the news of his death this morning (via The Hockey News email newsletter, I of course was both surprised and a bit sad. I never saw this guy play, but I’m always sad when stuff like this happens. I was bummed when Jon Kordic died in 1992, and when Gaetan Duchense died last year.

It’s even sadder when it is someone who never got a chance to realize their true potential.

A player’s death always has one negative, albeit short term, impact in the hobby. All of a sudden, a card that was selling for $1 becomes a $10 card. This has already begun on eBay–not even 24 hours after his death. I saw Bourdon’s OPC rookie card from last year, with an asking price of $20–that’s more than what Evgeny Malkin’s RC in that set is worth. Some of Bourdon’s autographed stuff is going for over $30 now. I’m sure most of it would have sold for only $5 two days before.

When a player plays well, we try and cash in. When a player makes it into the Hall of Fame, we also try to cash in. And, when a player passes away–sometimes tragically–some people try to cash in on that too. That is one trend in the hobby that I never enjoy.

Phil Esposito satire video

I found my old VHS copy of the 1997 NHL Awards show. What made this awards show worth keeping around on tape all these years were the “comedy bits”–humorous, hockey-related skits that were put on before and after commercial breaks that lampooned our favorite game.

Here is the first satirical video, of Ron MacLean giving Phil Esposito a phone call…

Check back next week, as I will be adding more of these funny videos.

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?).