Review: 2014-15 Springfield Falcons

2014-15 Springfield Falcons #11 - Kerby RychelConsidering that Upper Deck became the exclusive trading card licensee of the American Hockey League, it is a relief that teams can still produce their own sets. While Upper Deck has made two attractive sets dedicated to AHL players the past two seasons, team-issued sets are always the most comprehensive, featuring almost everyone on the team, from future NHLers to career journeymen to bubble players.

At a glance:
– 2014-15 Springfield Falcons
– 25 cards
– Size: 2 1/2″ x 3 1/2″
Download checklist

Earlier this year, the Springfield Falcons — top affiliate of the Columbus Blue Jackets — released a 25-card set for the 2014-15 season. It’s a colorful set that has baseball to thank for its unique, eye-catching design.

Continue reading “Review: 2014-15 Springfield Falcons”

Aaron Ekblad, Supersized!

ekblad_oversized_cardThis year, the NHL Draft was held in my home state of Florida, and I was lucky enough to be able to make the trip down to the BB&T Center in Sunrise to attend. On day two of the Draft, Upper Deck was sponsoring a free autograph signing with Florida Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad. He went first overall in the 2014 draft, and at the time of the 2015 draft was only days removed from claiming the Calder Trophy as the NHL’s Rookie of the Year. So the fact that he was scheduled to sign autographs — and sign them at no cost — was a pretty big deal to me.

After getting in line and waiting a few minutes, the Upper Deck staff, as well as arena staff, came over to the line and informed us that Ekblad would only be signing a card provided by Upper Deck, Continue reading “Aaron Ekblad, Supersized!”

The New Upper Deck Replacement Policy

Upper Deck LogoUpper Deck’s policy on replacing damaged cards has changed. They will still replace damaged cards up to a year from the date of the card’s manufacture, but you can no longer just drop the cards in the mail; the process is a bit more involved.

I’ve documented my most-recent return of defective cards to Upper Deck, so you know what to do — and how long it will take – if you get damaged cards in your latest box break.

Continue reading “The New Upper Deck Replacement Policy”

Box Break: 2014-15 Masterpieces Hockey

2014-15 Masterpieces Hockey Unopened BoxI love cards that use paintings instead of photos. Sets like the Hall of Fame postcards from the 1980s, Donruss Ice Kings from the 1990s and 2010s, and even the Upper Deck Hockey checklists from the early 1990s were all “must haves” for my collection. There’s just something awesome about seeing your favorite player rendered as a painting; it makes them seem even more iconic. So when Upper Deck announced that they were making a new set of Masterpieces Hockey, I knew I had to buy a box. It took me a while, but I finally got my mitts on one.

A box of 2014-15 Masterpieces costs around $100 and consists of 15 five-card packs. You are guaranteed three hits per box, with at least one (read: probably just one) hit being an autograph. Here is what I got in my most recent box break.

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The Best Hockey Card of 2014-15

stlouis_fThis 2014-15 Upper Deck hockey card of Martin St. Louis does not have an autograph on it, nor does it have a piece of jersey embedded in it. And you know what? It doesn’t need any of those gimmicks to be the best hockey card of the season. All it needed was this amazing photograph that, coincidentally, was taken exactly one year ago today.

Continue reading “The Best Hockey Card of 2014-15”

Puck Junk Podcast #3 – May 27, 2015

…with your hosts, Sal Barry & Tim Parish!


Player not working? Listen to the podcast on Soundcloud.

In Puck Junk Podcast #3, Sal and Tim (a.k.a. The Real DFG) talk about:

  • The St. Louis Blues naming Martin Brodeur as their Assistant General Manager (0:01 to 4:52)
  • Mike Babcock signing an 8-year, $50 million coaching contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs (4:53 to 16:09)
  • The 2014-15 Fleer Ultra Hockey card set (16:10 to 24:11)
  • The 1998-99 Pacific Hockey card set (24:12 to 33:37)

Trigger Warning: We mention Mike Keenan twice in this podcast. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

Pictures of some of the cards we discuss are after the jump. Continue reading “Puck Junk Podcast #3 – May 27, 2015”

Puck Junk Podcast #2 – May 20, 2015

…with your hosts, Sal Barry & Tim Parish!


Player not working? Listen to the podcast on Soundcloud.

In Puck Junk Podcast #2, Sal and Tim discuss:

  • The not-so-new, but still-relevant 2014-15 Upper Deck MVP Hockey set (0:00 to around 10:30)
  • The 1992-93 Fleer Ultra Hockey set, which was groundbreaking in many ways (10:31 to 19:05)
  • If Las Vegas would be a good city for an NHL expansion team, and what other cities should be considered. (19:06 to 37:45)

Card images, as well as a map of the NHL teams, after the jump. Continue reading “Puck Junk Podcast #2 – May 20, 2015”

Puck Junk Podcast #1 – May 12, 2015

…with your hosts, Sal Barry & Tim Parish!


Player not working? Listen to the podcast on Soundcloud.

This is the first in what will hopefully become a regular podcast series on this website, hosted by Sal Barry and Tim Parish. For those who don’t know, Tim maintains a sports card blog called The Real DFG and hangs out on Twitter @TheRealDFG.

Today, Sal and Tim talk about:

  • The Chicago Blackhawks sweep of the Minnesota Wild
  • The new 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee Platinum Hockey set
  • The 1989-90 Topps and O-Pee-Chee Hockey sets
  • How Pittsburgh was a big hockey town in the 1980s — and Chicago wasn’t

Total running time is 28:17. Images of some of the cards we talk about are after the jump. Continue reading “Puck Junk Podcast #1 – May 12, 2015”

Pack Break x 6: Eraseez Collectible Hockey Eraser Game

packagePaper football is about to get a run for its money. Eraseez is a new line of collectible erasers by Bulls i Toy that double as a tabletop hockey game. Each pack retails for around $3 and contains two puck erasers, two sheets of stickers for the pucks and one hockey stick eraser.

pack_1The puck erasers are 1.5″ in diameter, and the stick eraser is about 2.5″ long. The logo sticker and NHL shield sticker are circular and meant to be affixed to the pucks to make them slippery.

sticksStick blade erasers come in at least three different colors: orange, red and blue.

face-offThe top of the stick blades have a hole in them so you can put in a pencil to make a hockey stick. All you need is a number two pencil (always bring a number two pencil!) and a smooth surface and you are ready to play.

puck_in_piecesThe puck erasers — referred to as puzzle erasers on the packaging — can be broken into three pieces. I was told that this was “just for fun,” but I would argue that this allows you to either make the puck lighter for a game play variation (if you pull off one or both surfaces before affixing the stickers) or to use the smaller surface “parts” as erasers. Speaking of which…

erased…Eraseez actually work as erasers. Usually, “fun” erasers look cool but don’t work all that well, but Eraseez can be used to eliminate your mistakes. Well, mistakes made in pencil, anyway.

Bulls i Toys generously provided six packs of Eraseez. Let’s see what we got: Continue reading “Pack Break x 6: Eraseez Collectible Hockey Eraser Game”

Review: 2014-15 Rockford IceHogs

darlingThe Rockford IceHogs issued a team set of trading cards during the 2014-15 season. It was sponsored by the Rockford Register Star newspaper and features many Chicago Blackhawks prospects, such as Teuvo Teravainen and Scott Darling. The cards also have a unique design and tons of information on the back — as any good trading card should. Continue reading “Review: 2014-15 Rockford IceHogs”