Like so many other hockey fans, I was surprised and saddened when I learned that former NHL defenseman Pierre Pilote passed away Saturday night at the age of 85.
I never saw Mr. Pilote play; he retired long before I was born, so I can’t attest to what kind of player he was without paraphrasing what others have already said, especially during the past few days. However, I have met Pilote many times during the past decade, and can speak to as what kind of person he was towards Blackhawks fans.
Pilote was at the annual Chicago Blackhawks Convention practically every year since it started in 2008. I also met him at the National Sports Collectors Convention when it was in Chicago in 2011 and 2015, and at numerous Sun-Times Sports Card Shows, where he usually signed autographs for charity as a part of The Fergie Jenkins Foundation.
As you would probably expect of someone who was the Black Hawks team captain for seven years, Pilote was nothing short of awesome when interacting with the fans. Continue reading “Goodbye and Thank You, Pierre Pilote”
The Pocket-Sized Hockey Hall of Fame
If you enjoy card games like “Trumps” — where the highest card wins — or “Go Fish,” but wish they somehow involved hockey, then you should check out Legends International Ice Hockey Trumps Game. It is a new card game from Switzerland that features 40 eye-catching illustrations of the best hockey players from around the world.
Sold as a full deck online, Legends Trumps Game shows your favorite Hall of Fame players like you’ve never seen them before.
Continue reading “Review: Legends Trumps Game”
…with Sal Barry & Tim Parish
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In the newest Puck Junk Podcast, Sal and Tim (@TheRealDFG) discuss the 2016 Hockey Hall of Fame inductees: Sergei Makarov, Rogie Vachon, Pat Quinn and Eric Lindros. Did you know that each of these inductees all were at the center of controversy, at one time or another, during their careers? We talk about that too.
Also in this episode:
Upper Deck’s exclusive autograph deal with Auston Matthews.
Playing fantasy hockey on the Topps NHL Skate mobile app.
Martin Brodeur playing in the upcoming Blues alumni game.
Tim’s kids opening packs of 1991-92 Stadium Club Hockey.
Podcast #19 is SUPERSIZED at 1 hour and 1 minute — and it’s totally free! What a bargain! Theme music by Jim “Not the Goalie” Howard.
Oh, and here are the two articles mentioned in the podcast:
• Career in Cards: Eric Lindros
• King for a Day: Dale McCourt
So, what are your thoughts on the 2016 Hall of Fame inductees, on Topps Skate, the Auston Matthews-Upper Deck agreement, or anything else? Leave a comment below. ■
Yesterday, Eric Lindros was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame — and deservedly so. If you look at Lindros’ entire body of work — from his days as a phenom in junior hockey, to competition on the international stage, to his eight years in Philadelphia — he belongs in the Hall. Sure, his productivity sharply declined at the end of his career, but the same could be said of many other Hall of Fame players. Lindros wasn’t just awesome in his prime; he was awesome from day one. Here we will take a look at the career, illustrated with some of his best hockey cards, of one of the Hockey Hall of Fame’s 2016 inductees.
Continue reading “Career in Cards: Eric Lindros”
When Gordie Howe passed away earlier this month, he left behind a legacy that will never be matched. Sure, Wayne Gretzky surpassed Howe in points, but even Gretzky has repeatedly stated that Howe was the greatest. No other player has skated 26 seasons in the NHL. And while Jaromir Jagr may surpass that record, he would be hard-pressed to play until he was 52 years old.
Howe was the power forward that all other power forwards want to be. He could score and intimidate. He was mean on the ice, and yet his opponents have nothing but kind words to say about Mr. Hockey.
Because his career was so long — 26 years in the NHL and 6 years in the WHA — Howe had many trading cards released during his wonderful career. Here we take a look at some of Mr. Hockey’s best hockey cards.
Continue reading “Career in Cards: Gordie Howe”
Chris Pronger has accomplished everything you would expect from an elite NHL defenseman. He’s won the Stanley Cup, the Norris Trophy and the Hart Trophy. He was the captain of three different NHL teams, was on the cover of two different video games and lead the league in plus/minus two times, for what it’s worth.
Pronger also excelled in international competitions, winning gold once at the World Junior Championships and twice in the Olympics. He was drafted second overall in 1993 and would still be a force on the Philadelphia Flyers’ blue line if not for the injuries that ended his career in 2011.
Naysayers will bemoan the fact that Pronger is still technically an active player — heck, he even got traded back in June — so he has no business being inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame until his last paycheck as a player clears. Obviously, Pronger, who suffers from post concussion syndrome, won’t be playing pro hockey again, so there’s really no controversy.
In honor of Pronger’s Hall of Fame induction, here is a look at his NHL career, accompanied by some of the more interesting hockey cards issued during the past two decades.
Continue reading “Career in Cards: Chris Pronger”