I was thumbing through a binder full of miscellaneous hockey cards at the local card shop, and came across this beauty:
The owner of the shop told me I could have it for two bucks. I informed him that this card was worth significantly more–even though the edges are a bit rough–but he said that I’m a good customer so he didn’t want much for it.
This card is very cool. It is from the 1974-75 O-Pee-Chee WHA set, and depicts Hall of Famer Gordie Howe along with his two sons Mark and Marty. This was Gordie’s first card in three years–his last being in the 1971-72 sets. But this card also serves as a rookie card for both Marty and Mark–the latter who would go on to play 22 seasons of pro hockey (six in the WHA followed by 16 in the NHL).
The card is not perfect. The edges have those typical OPC rough edges, and there seems to be a bit of a blemish to the right of Marty’s head. Nonetheless, for two bucks I ain’t complaining. It might be the best $2 hockey card purchase I ever made.
This weekend, I purchased my first box of hockey cards from the new season–2008-09 Upper Deck Legends Masterpieces. I was at Target and bought one of those “blaster boxes”, which contained 8 packs for the low, low price of $20.
By the way, eight packs for $20 is not a low price, especially considering that you only get four cards per pack. Counting sales tax (10.25% in Chicago), that makes each individual card “cost” about 69 cents each.
But are they worth it? I’m a sucker for “art cards”. One of my favorite sets is the old Hockey Hall of Fame postcard set. Since this Legends Masterpieces set is composed solely of artistic renderings of famous players and memorable moments, I thought I’d give these a shot.
I know blaster boxes don’t have great odds having any sort of insert card. This one in particular was devoid of any insert, chase or special cards–only base cards here. I’ve listed a pack-by-pack breakdown of what I got in the box:
Pack 1 #66 – Marty McSorley #47 – Grant Fuhr #32 – Phil Esposito #76 – Andy Bathgate
Pack 2 #62 – The Sutters #35 – Jarri Kurri #38 – Wayne Gretzky #12 – Mario Lemieux
Pack 3 #24 – Pat LaFontaine #68 – Dale Hawerchuk #23 – Mike Bossy #85 – Mr. Hockey
So, for like the first time in ages I bought myself a hockey jersey…
I recently started Graduate School. I am enrolled in the New Media Studies (aka “Multimedia”) program at DePaul University in Chicago. Well, it turns out that DePaul has a Collegiate Division II hockey team, which is pretty awesome because my undergrad college only had Ultimate Frisbee.
If there’s two things I like, it’s hockey and writing about hockey, so I went to the first game of the season this past Friday–not only as a spectator, but to cover the game for DePaul’s student newspaper.
It’s only been three weeks, but so far grad school has been pretty cool. I’ve totally enjoyed the class I’m taking, I get to write for their school paper and they have a hockey team.
As for the jersey…well, I couldn’t pass it up. It was $30, and has an old school look to it with the shoelace neck. Now I just got to find a place that can put some New York Ranger-style numbers on it.
Seven years ago today, former NHL player Garnet “Ace” Bailey was aboard one of the hijacked planes that crashed into the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. At the time, Bailey was a scout for the L.A. Kings.
I guess every American such as myself–and probably many Canadians, too–every year on September 11 think about what happened.
I recently purchased 530 packs of 1995-96 Panini Hockey stickers, and let me tell you, opening 530 packs of stickers is not fun!
I imagine that this would be the hobby equivalent of shelling peanuts. As much as I loved buying and opening packs of Panini Hockey Stickers back in the day, it just isn’t the same. Now, it’s more akin to factory work–you do the same thing over and over and over until you just don’t care. There are no insert or chase cards to hope for, and (somewhat ironically) the wrappers tend to stick to the top sticker, making these a bit of a challenge to unwrap. Fortunately, the top sticker is a shiny, foil sticker, so any paper that sticks can be removed without damaging the sticker itself
I purchased this large lot of sticker packs with the delusion of being to complete eight or nine sets. After all, 530 packs would be a total of 3,180 stickers. Since each set contains 306 stickers, you could theoretically make ten complete sets and have 120 leftover stickers.
Theoretically? I am delusional. After opening 100 or so packs, I was quickly reminded on how bad the collation on these old Panini sets were. I’d end up getting like 12 of one particular sticker, and none of some other sticker. So, while I got a ton of stickers of guys like Eric Lindros, Ray Bourque and Mike Richter, what I’d really hope for is stickers of Mark Tinordi or Ian Laperriere, because those two seemed impossible to come by in these packs.
When all was said and done, I only completed three sets! I am five stickers short of competing a fourth set, 15 stickers shy of a fifth set and would need an additional 30 stickers for a sixth set.
On the flip side, I have 1,394 duplicate stickers I don’t need, as well as a bunch of sticker albums (each album came with 10 packs).
Should anyone have duplicates from this set, perhaps we can work out a trade? The stickers I need are posted in my Want List.
Likewise, if anyone needs an album, I’d be willing to give you one for just the cost of shipping.
1993 World Cup Soccer #HC4 & 1994 World Cup Soccer #C8 – Wayne Gretzky
During the 1990s, several spokesmen for trading card companies would sometimes promote cards of sports they did not play. You had Eric Lindros on a Score baseball card, Rocket Ishmail on a Classic hockey card and Wayne Gretzky on an Upper Deck soccer card.
It’s been a busy last couple of days, but I’m getting caught up and have been itching to post this for a while:
Top Five Wayne Gretzky Commercials
Seeing as how this month is the 20 year anniversary of “The Trade”, I figured these cheesy commercials featuring “The Great One” would be appropriate. So, in familiar countdown fashion, let us see the best that YouTube has to offer…
5. Bo Knows This commercial, from around 1990 or so, stars Bo Jackson, the former athlete who starred in both pro football and pro baseball. There are numerous cameo appearances by many famous sports stars, including Gretzky himself. The story goes that Wayne was supposed to ask “Bo Knows hockey?” in the commercial, but kept messing up the line, causing the director to shorten his dialog. Gretzky appears around the 14-second mark.
“No.” That’s it–no. But Gretzky’s delivery makes that the funniest part of the commercial.
4. Domino’s Pizza Bo may know baseball, football, tennis and hockey–but in 1994 Wayne Gretzky knew that the only great pizza is a fresh pizza. Watch as Gretzky skates across a sheet of ice to deliver a pipin’ hot pizza to your front door.
Apparently they did not have to shorten his dialog to “No”. Though I wonder if the kid tipped him.
3. McDonald’s Gretzky vs. Sundin Gretzky’s acting ability got way better in the late 1990s, when he played for the New York Rangers. Here, he has a puck shooting contest with Maple Leafs captain Mats Sundin–the loser has to buy the winner lunch at McDonald’s. Surprisingly, this commercial is pretty good.
“Aren’t you getting hungry yet?”
2. Bud Light “Bubble Boys” ad campaign In 2000, Bud Light beer ran a series of commercials starring the “Bubble Boys”–two talking little hockey men from a tabletop hockey game (sometimes called “bubble hockey”). Gretzky was named the commissioner of the “Bubble Boys Hockey League”.
Later on, Gretzky was asked how he’d fare as a bubble hockey player…
“Go get him!” “We can’t! We don’t go back there!”
1. 7-Up Wow. Just, wow. This one is so bad, it’s awesome. There’s no way I could not make this #1. This commercial from 1981 stars Wayne and his younger brother Keith.
Stilted dialog, bad puns, horrible jingle…this one gets a hat trick! “At last, clean, refreshing 7-Up.”
Honorable Mention – Phoenix Coyotes What can be funnier than Gretzky “bench pressing” in that last commercial?
Actually, this commercial merits an honorable mention because Gretzky’s acting is halfway decent here, as he interacts with an angry French-Canadian snowman puppet.
Pre-NHL card of goalie Nabokov keep this set from being forgettable
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 Nabokov. Continue reading “Review: 1999-00 Cleveland Lumberjacks team set”