NHL Free Agency Frenzy: Don’t Expect Updated Hockey Cards Anytime Soon

It Will Be a While Before Cards Reflect New Teams

Since NHL Free Agency started last week, over 40 NHL players have signed free agency contracts with new teams. Notable signings include Steven Stamkos with the Predators, Jake Guentzel with the Lightning, Ilya Samsonov with the Golden Knights, Elias Lindholm with the Bruins, Sean Monohan with the Blue Jackets, and Vladamir Tarasenko with the Red Wings. 

There were some trades too, such as the deal that sent Bruins’ goalie Linus Ullmark to the Senators. 

Nearly all of the players changing teams over this summer are NHL regulars who will appear on one or more hockey cards this upcoming season.

Unfortunately, it’s going to take some time before we can expect to see cards picturing these players in their new threads. 

The next few cards of Steven Stamkos that we find in packs will still show him in his Lightning jersey. Sorry, Predators’ fans. You’ll just have to wait a little longer. 

Of course, part of that reason is because Upper Deck is still releasing sets from the 2023-24 season over the summer, as well as the 2022-23 Premier set coming out this week. 

And even sets released prior to the start of the season, like 2024-25 MVP, will use photos from before March’s trade deadline. Other sets like Upper Deck Series One and Artifacts will be released in October – still too soon to see any of the summer signings or trades reflected. 

But it wasn’t always that way. Card companies used to go through great lengths to picture players in their new uniforms after a trade or free agent singing. 

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