Happy Secretaries Day!

1988-89 ProCards card – Sheryl Reeves

1988-89 ProCards card - Sheryl ReevesDuring the 1988-89 season, the ProCards company produced minor league hockey cards of AHL and IHL teams. Each was sold as an individually-wrapped team set. Many future NHLers would be featured, with players like Ed Belfour and Mark Recchi appearing on trading cards for the first time. Most notable, though, would be a card of one team’s administrative assistant.

Yes, that’s right – a hockey card of a secretary. Continue reading “Happy Secretaries Day!”

DePaul Hockey, part 2

In September of last year, I mentioned that my grad school–DePaul University in Chicago–has an ACHA Division 2 hockey team. Since attending their first game, I have covered the team throughout the season for the school newspaper, The DePaulia.

It’s cool being a hockey writer, even if it was for what one might consider the “minor league” of college hockey (DePaul does not have an NCAA hockey team, just ACHA “club” hockey).

But to me, hockey is hockey. I wrote quite a bit about the Chicago Wolves when I was an undergrad, and put the same effort into it as if I were covering the Blackhawks. Same deal here. When you love a sport, you always want to do your best to “spread the word” and try to win over a few new fans for it.

Speaking of winning, DePaul’s hockey team had a winning season. They won both games at the Regional Tournament, then went 2-1 at the National Championships, finishing 7th. Mind you, only 16 out of 170 Division 2 teams make it to the Nationals, so that places DePaul within the top 5 percent of teams nationwide.

After that, a few of their players were invited to the All-Star tournament, capping off a very successful season for the team.

Of course, it’s always easier to cover or follow a winning team than a losing team. Win or lose, I plan on covering the team next season too.

The ’73-74 Topps set build

I was at a card show this past weekend, and suddenly decided that I am going to build a 1973-74 Topps Hockey set.

OK, maybe not suddenly. Even my “sudden” decisions still seem to be mulled over.

Truth be told, I never really cared for the ’73-74 design. The variance in border colors are rather haphazard, the team name in that little “ribbon” just gets in the way while the torn edges around each photo seems arbitrary.

In other words, the design just plain sucks. But…I have every Topps set from 1968-69 to 1972-73, so this would be the next “logical” 1970s set to collect. Like I said, even sudden decisions have some rationale to them.

Well, I’m not the only one who seems to dislike this set. At the show I went to, most of the cards were very cheap, and I was able to pick up 133 cards for $53–including Bill Barber (RC), Gilles Gilbert (RC), Dave “The Hammer” Schultz (RC), Darryl Sittler, Marcel Dionne, Stan Mikita, Rick Martin, Gilbert Perreault, a “marked up” checklist and some minor stars.

Checking my collection, I already have a Billy Smith RC. I remember paying $4 for it back in 1991. I also have the Guy Lafleur card from that set–probably paid $1 or $2 for it back then–as well as 14 other commons that I’ve had forever and probably paid a dime each for.

On Monday, I managed to pick up the Bobby Orr card in the set for $5.

Counting the cards I bought when I was a kid, I spent $65 thus far on putting together this ’73-74 set. My goal is to piece the set together for less than the Beckett “low” price of $125.

Of course, I’ll need a Ken Dryden, Bobby Clarke, Phil Esposito, Tony Esposito and a few of those “League Leaders” cards. Once I get those–and an upgraded checklist–the rest I need are commons.

After that, it will be onto 1974-75…as well as all of the “current” sets I’m always trying to build.

Walt Poddubny

1991-92 Topps Stadium Club card #177 – Walt Poddubny

1991-92 Topps Stadium Club card #177 - Walt PoddubnyFormer NHL player Walt Poddubny died suddenly on Saturday, March 21. He was 49 years old. The cause of his death is unknown.

I always get a strange feeling when a former NHLer dies before his time. Yes, people die every day – but someone who is (or was) an athlete should not just suddenly kick the bucket. Considering the incredible things that pro hockey players do, you almost think that they are invincible, that they will live forever. Or at least live past age 50. Continue reading “Walt Poddubny”

Movie Review: The Love Guru

It’s not a hockey movie. It’s not a funny movie, either.

The Love Guru movie posterMike Meyers ought to be ashamed of himself for writing, producing and starring in The Love Guru. It is a bland, stupid comedy — and I use that word very loosely — that panders to the lowest common denominator with an overabundance of toilet humor and bad puns. Even worse, the film revolves around a hockey player on the Toronto Maple Leafs, making the sport of hockey guilty by association for being in this lame film. Continue reading “Movie Review: The Love Guru”

“In Action” Inaction

1982-83 O-Pee-Chee card #40 – Mel Bridgman In Action

Mel Bridgman In ActionFile this under false advertising.

At the top of the card it states – no, it practically screams – in uppercase letters “IN ACTION”. But clearly, Mel Bridgman is anything but “in action”. Maybe O-Pee-Chee erroneously added a space between the two words, and really meant to say “inaction” As in, Bridgman isn’t really doing anything except looking somewhat perplexed – perhaps by the misnomer that labels the top of his trading card. Continue reading ““In Action” Inaction”