Happy Birthday to me! Upper Deck Series Two has come out. Time to see what gems Upper Deck has served up this time.
Brandon Prust #435: Looks like UD is sticking to familiar territory with its Serial Killer Series as it did last fall. Maybe Prust hears the Call of Cthulhu, maybe someone spoke ill of that Nickelback song about the photograph, or that other Nickelback song that sounds exactly like the song about the photograph.
Or maybe he’s seeking justice for…
Chris Higgins #434: …who appears to have been crop-dusted by, oh let’s say, Evander Kane (nobody likes him anyway). If you don’t know what crop-dusting is kids, you haven’t worked in the food industry. Clearly something quite foul wafted up Higgy’s olfactory. I can think of no other explanation.
David Jones #277: I’ll be blunt, UD’s photographer did a great job of capturing absolutely nothing beautiful on this card, but it’s their editing staff that somehow said, “Yeah, let’s just go with this one!” Back to front, its “Old Folks At The Glass So Everyone Can Look Disinterested In Winnipeg” Night (to be fair, one of their better promos). Blake Wheeler fell asleep at the wheel and who can blame him, while Jonesy has obviously just stepped on a Lego. Yeesh!
Brock Nelson #377: Any Islanders fans out there in Brooklyn? Well I’m gonna pretend there is one and point out that UD just wants to anger you. The first thing you notice is the delightful lavender sweater Brock sports so he can go out, drop the gloves and punch cancer in the taint. Seriously, cancer sucks. But while his stick is trying to hide it, there it lurks… @robably the best seat in the house. While you sit back in Barclay enjoying only 2/3 of the game, contemplate how in the world the photographer was able to find a decent spot.
Michael Raffl #397 and Nikita Zadorov #305: Ah, the Fish-Eye Lens. When you absolutely, positively have to make a few pasty white guys look like an early 90’s rap video, accept no substitute. Admittedly, Raffl’s card actually has a cool photo, with the puck getting ready to smack the cameraman and Raffl coming in to make sure he stays down. But while Alex Gologoski is playing the part of the hype-man in the this shot, it kind of looks like his face is melting off as both players are getting sucked toward a black hole. Zadorov, on the other hand, has ridiculously long hands attached to his little T-rex arms. Terrifying. Oh, and there’s a dude-bro in the back taking an epic selfie, so the card gets points for that too.
Michael Hutchinson #442: In a desperate attempt to keep the opposing players out of his paint and to stop falling on him, MH starts a game wearing no pants. He won’t confirm if he got the idea from his mentor, David Lee Roth.
Daniel Sedin #430: Danny Sedin might have heard of this crop dusting phenomenon and got his wires crossed while looking it up on the internet. Or he’s just taking a page from Kari Leihtonen’s book, but can’t jump as high to park his butt on the cross bar.
Now to my favorites.
Brandon Sutter #431: Never have I wished the Upper Deck logo looked like a fish getting tossed in mid-air to feed this Canuck for a good job at Sea World. We miss you in Carolina, Brandon.
Chris Neil #386: “Ugh, there’s a Looney on the floor. I really need to pay rent….but that jerk Ceci probably glued it there and is waiting for me try and pick it up… But man, a whole Loony!”
Rasmus Ristolainen #274: Come on…Come on! OH, COME ON!!!!
What makes this card even better is the Canucks lady in the stands who is totally aghast by what is about to transpire! Vancouver and their fans really made this box special. Hats off to you!
Honorable mention -Devan Dubnyk Canvas #C163 (back):
If you’ve ever played old hockey video games made around the late 90’s/early 2000’s, you’ll occasionally come across glitches where a player runs into the wall, or into Chris Chelios, and then turns themselves inside out. Yeah, I think that could have been based on Dooby’s painful tantric stretching regiment. Ouch, this is painful to even look at!
Jim Howard is a Carolina Hurricanes fan and reformed baseball card collector who is trying to keep the hockey collection from becoming overwhelming. And while he wishes he could give Crosby the business with his mitt, he is in fact NOT the goalie for the Red Wings. ■