O Canada!

O Canada, the new hockey card set from In the Game, launches today. The focus of the set is on Canadian National Team players, as well as a few “formidable” International foes.

Sigh.

It’s times like this that I really miss competition between hockey card companies. Right now, Upper Deck pretty much runs the show, since they have the exclusive rights to make NHL hockey cards. I admire what ITG has done without having an NHL license, with their sets focusing on international play, or “Heroes and Prospects”.

But it seems that all the cards that ITG makes are so expensive, due to autograph and memorabilia inserts.

And guess what? Upper Deck cards are expensive too. Well, the Victory cards are cheap, but not very exciting.

I guess if I’m going to spend $80 on a box of hockey cards it’s going to be NHL hockey cards.

But maybe I can pick up a base set of these O Canada cards on the cheap.

Click here to find out everything you would want to know about the O Canada set. 

Card of the Week: King for a Day

1979-80 Topps / O-Pee-Chee Dale McCourt – Card #63

Dale McCourtOne day while thumbing through my extra hockey cards, I came across this odd card – 1979-1980 Topps #63, Dale McCourt. This card featured McCourt in his L.A. Kings Jersey.

However, Dale McCourt was never a member of the L.A. Kings. And yet, this card clearly shows him as one. The back of the card even says “AQUIRED: Awarded from Red Wings”. But later cards never mentioned him playing for the Kings. Intrigued, I did some research, only to find that McCourt’s place of employment was, in the end, determined in a year-long legal battle. Continue reading “Card of the Week: King for a Day”

Review: 1981-82 Topps Hockey

The set with a split personality.

1981-82 Topps #11 - Tony Esposito

At a glance:
– 1981-82 Topps Hockey
– 198 cards
— 66 nationally-distributed cards (1-66)
— 66 “East” cards (67-132)
— 66 “West” cards (67-132)
– Size: 2 1/2″ x 3 1/2″
Download Checklist

Featuring a very cool design, the 1981-82 Topps Hockey set was an odd release. Topps’ gimmick from the previous season–the “scratch off puck” to reveal the player’s name–was mercifully not repeated. Instead, Topps resorted to a much different ploy–regional distribution. Continue reading “Review: 1981-82 Topps Hockey”

Card of the Week: Garf Grunsky

1992 Skybox Garfield Trading Cards – card #78

Garfield Hockey CardThis is a card that I just randomly lucked into finding. In the early 1990s, I worked in a comic book store, and in 1992, Skybox released a set of Garfield trading cards. Containing 100 cards, the set consisted of random illustrations of Garfield, Odie and other characters from the comic strip. A few of the cards would parody something. This was one such card. Continue reading “Card of the Week: Garf Grunsky”

Review: 1988-89 Frito Lay Hockey Stickers

A “snack-sized” set.

1988-89 Frito Lay Stickers - Steve Yzerman

At a glance:
– 1988-89 Frito Lay Stickers
– 42 stickers (1 3/8″ wide x 1 3/4″ tall)
– 1 poster (30″ wide x 20″ tall)
Download Checklist

Quite the small set – both in set size and size of the stickers themselves. Each of these mini-stickers came wrapped in a clear cellophane wrapper, and were inserted in specially marked bags of Frito-Lay potato chips during the 1988-1989 season. These stickers are unnumbered, and all feature the same back-a removable backing with the NHL and NHLPA logos, as well as a copyright date of 1988. Continue reading “Review: 1988-89 Frito Lay Hockey Stickers”

Card of the Week: The Fake One

Wayne Gretzky Indianapolis Racers “pre-RC” from the 1990s

Wayne Gretzky Indianapolis RacersIn the early 1990s, a different kind of fake Wayne Gretzky card surfaced. Instead of counterfeiting Gretzky’s 1979-80 O-Pee-Chee rookie card, an enterprising crook decided to take things one step further, and make a card of Gretzky as a member of the Indianapolis Racers. Continue reading “Card of the Week: The Fake One”

Review: 2007-08 Victory Hockey

The first set of the 07-08 season leaves much to be desired

2007-08 Victory #144 - Marian Gaborik

At a glance:
– 2007-08 Victory
– 245-card set
— 200 base cards
— 45 short-printed rookie cards
– Insert Sets
— 6 card EA Sports Face-Off insert set
— 50 card Stars On Ice insert set
— 50 card Game Breakers insert set
— 42 card Victory Oversized Card set
– Size: 2 1/2″ x 3 1/2″
– Download Checklist
– Review of 2007-08 Victory Update

Upper Deck really likes to jump the gun on hockey season, releasing this year’s Victory set near the end of August-more than a full month before hockey season begins. To many, Victory is a “why bother” set, and I can see why. The cards are relatively cheap (around a buck a pack), there are no memorabilia cards and-with all the free agent signings over the summer-a lot of cards are already “out of date”. Plus, you still have to mess with short printed rookie cards…and these RCs of guys who mainly appeared at the end of the season for a game or two. Continue reading “Review: 2007-08 Victory Hockey”