Why the 1997 NHL Awards Show was the Greatest NHL Awards Show Ever

Tomorrow is the 2017 NHL Awards Ceremony in Las Vegas. During the show, the Vegas Golden Knights will also reveal who they selected in the expansion draft. If you haven’t already thought about that, do so now; a show that will heap praise upon the NHL’s best players will also highlight those not good enough to stay on their current teams.  

The NHL Awards have been cringe-worthy in its attempts to be funny for as long as we care to remember– with B-list comics making D-list jokes — while also seemingly trying to pander to non-hockey fans. Adding in expansion draft “revelations” can only make this year’s award show even worse. 

This got me thinking about the 1997 NHL Awards Show, which conveniently took place 20 years ago (people love anniversaries, as do I). The NHL Awards in 1997 tried to be funny, but in a sweet way, and succeeded where current NHL Awards shows do not. The 1997 show was hosted by Ron MacLean, who is serious but has a sense of humor. The 1997 NHL Awards Show had a good mix of celebrities who actually liked hockey as award presenters, jokes that aren’t bad and some humorous segments that introduced the awards nominees. Future rap sensation Drake even made a cameo as a 10-year old boy. 

But the best were these comedy sketches that served as “bumpers” before and after commercial breaks. I dare the NHL to once again at least attempt something as funny as “The Wig Helmet.” Read on, and you’ll soon understand what I mean.  Here is a rundown, with images and video clips, on why the 1997 NHL Awards Show was the best NHL Awards Show — ever!  Continue reading “Why the 1997 NHL Awards Show was the Greatest NHL Awards Show Ever”

Puck Junk Podcast #16 – August 31, 2016

…with Sal Barry and Jim Howard.


Player not working? Listen to the podcast on SoundCloud.

Sal Barry and guest host Jim Howard revisit the 1990s with the 1996-97 Pinnacle Mint set, which was a set of hockey cards and hockey coins. Yes, coins.

Here are a few pictures of the various cards and coins found in this set.

13_Teemu_Selanne_bronze

13_Teemu_Selanne_bronze_back

1996-97 Pinnacle Mint Bronze card (front and back)\

28_Jim_Carey_Bronze

28_Jim_Carey_Silver1996-97 Pinnacle Mint Bronze card and Silver card

13_Teemu_Selanne

13_Teemu_Selanne_back

1996-97 Pinnacle Mint card with hole (front and back)

22_Chris_Chelios

22_Chris_Chelios_back1996-97 Pinnacle Mint card with coin inserted (front and back)

sundin_coin

1996-97 Pinnacle Mint Mats Sundin bronze coin

jagr_coin

1996-97 Pinnacle Mint Jaromir Jagr bronze coin

bure_coin

1996-97 Pinnacle Mint Pavel Bure bronze coin

milton_berle

bure_coin

Milton Berle and Pavel Bure coin

checklist

rules1996-97 Pinnacle Mint checklist and sweepstakes rules

rules_large

1996-97 Pinnacle Mint sweepstakes rules card (large)

Total Time: 33:30

Theme music by Jim “Not the Goalie” Howard.

Did you collect Pinnacle Mint back in the day? Or are you collecting it now? Did you unearth one of the elusive gold coins? Do you like or dislike this set? Leave a comment and let us know. ■

Puck Junk Podcast #14 – August 17, 2016

…with Sal Barry and Tim Parish.


Player not working? Listen to the podcast on Soundcloud.

Twenty years ago, one of the most over-the-top hockey card sets was unleashed on unsuspecting collectors. Of course, we are talking about the Fleer Metal Universe set from 1996-97, which superimposed hockey players into weird cosmic settings.

Ever want to see Theoren Fleury on an alien planet with giant flowers, Felix Potvin catching an exploding puck, Dave Manson at the nucleus of an atom or Steve Yzerman with a frickin’ laser on his head?

If you said “Yes!” to any of those, well then, this is the set for you.

Podcast #14 is 36 minutes long and features rockin’ new intro music by Jim “Not the Goalie” Howard.

Here are some of the cards that we talk about.

053_Curtis_Joseph

Curtis Joseph fighting off a swarm of flying eyeballs.

119_Dave_Manson

Dave Manson at the nucleus of an atom (or about to go nuclear!).

051_Steve_Yzerman

Steve Yzerman after being assimilated by the Borg.

018_Theoren_Fleury

Theoren Fleury skating through a flower garden on an alien planet.

056_Doug_Weight

Doug Weight being attacked by metal claws! Extreme!

036_Sandis_Osolinsh

Sandis Ozolinsh impersonating the Kool-Aid Man. OH YEAH!

194_Roman_Vopat

Roman Vopat emerging from a Stargate.

152_Felix_Potvin

Felix Potvin catching an exploding hand grenade.

BONUS:
Two more cards that we don’t talk about, but are still fun to look at.

170_Bryan_Berard

Bryan Berard hated his “fish sticks” Islanders jersey so much that he set it on fire. Unfortunately, he forgot to take it off first.

005_Steve_Ruccin

Steve Rucchin shattering a metal wall with a bruising body check. This may be the most “1990s” card ever made because it features a player who was only in the NHL because the league expanded like crazy, wearing a third jersey, on a shiny metallic trading card.

We want to know! Did you ever collect the 1996-97 Fleer Metal Universe Hockey set? What do you think about it? Leave a comment below. 

1996-97 Donruss Elite Eric Lindros & Mario Lemieux uncirculated autograph

lindros_lemieuxThe shiny card you see here is from the 1996-97 Donruss Elite Hart to Hart insert set. I purchased it from a dealer recently. However, there is good reason to believe that this card may have “escaped” from the Donruss facility in 1997 and was never circulated in packs. Continue reading “1996-97 Donruss Elite Eric Lindros & Mario Lemieux uncirculated autograph”