Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Old Time Hockey!

Love it!

Let's see... I can see Ranger Vic Hadfield way in the back, and Ranger Rod Gilbert bottom left.
And of course center stage we have Bernie Parent in a Eddie Giacomin headlock.

I wonder how hard this would be to get autographed???

EDIT: whoops. That's not Rod Gilbert. He wore #7, not #4. So I guess based on the timeline, it would have to be Larry Brown.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Ice Ice Booty...

unlike the last post over on Waxaholic, I will not compare this post title with a song accompanied by a video. None of us need that brought back on us. We suffered enough in the late '80's. In fact, that song is probably going through your head right now...... you know it is... While you contemplate how quickly you can find a sharp knife, take a look at these beauties snagged at the last trade night. Just a few of the highlights.

This is a rookie auto of 'Boom'. Otherwise known as Alexei Emelin. Doesn't speak a word of English, but the sound he makes when he plasters someone into the boards resonates throughout the Bell Centre like a big Boom. Thus, the nickname.
When he was paired early on with fellow defenceman Tomas Kaberle, they were known as 'Ka-Boom'
Another card for the Carey Price binder... a dufex monstrosity from Zenith.

Another Habs rookie defenceman, this one the non-auto'ed version of Raphael Diaz.
to keep the pattern going, (have you forgotten the song yet? Ice, Ice B.....) another Carey Price card. Apparently he is Lord of the NHL. Okay.
Picking up more Captain C product as the secondary market plummets on this stuff. I nabbed this Silver Kirk Muller and a few base cards for my set.
I also traded heavy for a bunch of these....
I'm now down to only needing 15 for the set. If you have any of these or the Cpaptain C set, please let me know, we'll work something out.

Aww.... the heck with it..... you know you want it.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

2011-12 Upper Deck SPx... and I have issues ...

although I may be a couple of weeks late on this.... Upper Deck released it's latest version of SPx. You've probably seen it before, but I'm here to put my own little rant spin on things.
It starts out fairly well. A nice new design where the colours really pop. The base cards are kinda cool, even with the dreaded added gold foil. And the hits, although I don't have any to show, are really well designed and cool looking. Take my word for it.
But you know me. I look at things many others may or may not see. A little backstory. Back in the day, I worked as a photographer for a couple of years. Maybe three. (You want to hang out with hot chicks? Become a photographer) Anyways... there are certain rules you follow as a photographer. There aren't many, but what ones there are, you follow. Although, this was back when cameras had "film". The photos had to be "developed". In "darkrooms". Google those terms in quotations kids... you'll learn something. Sometimes I feel like a blacksmith, although I suppose in certain circles blacksmiths are still useful.
Where was I?
Oh yeah, the rules. Take a look at Carey Price up above... and Mr Subban below here. Notice anything? (Hint, look at their heads.) Yeah. There heads are chopped off.
Now I realize that the photographers responsible for those pics probably included their entire heads in the shots. They are, after all, professionals. So we'll assume that the design/layout team decided that this would be the best look.
Are there not editors anymore? Who approves this kind of stuff?

Let's take a look at another Canadien, this time Tomas Plekanec. More missing cranium. Awesome.

Besides yet another half headed hockey player, let's talk about another peeve. Player selection.
Here we see Mike Cammalleri of the Montreal Canadiens. Minor problem. Cammalleri plays for the Calgary Flames. He was traded there on January 12, 2012. When did this set get released? May 8, 2012.
In four months, UD couldn't have put a different Hab in the set? Or change Cammalleri to the Flames. Something? Anything?
Am I missing something here? With today's technology, cards cannot be changed in four months? How about an old OPC "Now with Flames" stamp right on the picture. At least that would be an effort.

If anyone reading knows about card production and printing... please enlighten me.

Sunday, May 20, 2012


Gei-co [Gahy-ko]
1. Trademark - brand name of a leading insurance company in the United States.

2. a Spanish word meaning Quebec. [Kwe-bek]

Saturday, May 19, 2012

I can't help myself....

I've been preaching about sticking to cards off of my wantlists... saving money... sticking to a plan... And while I've been 90% successful at it, I have to admit, I keep straying.
I'm weak. And I have a problem. That's the first step, right? Admission?
Anyways... at the last card show I picked up a few cards that were not on any of my lists.
Charlie Simmer, game used purple kings jersey /99 for a dollar. A DOLLAR! ARE THEY INSANE?

some of you may not have been paying attention, but Charlie is one of favourite non-Canadiens players from the 80's. It doesn't hurt that he now lives in Calgary and I've run into him a few times. The last time he even remembered my name. I'm now officially worried it's because the next time we bump into each other will result in a Bench Warrant.

And would it kill Panini to use a little colour on their cards? Especially on an 80's Kings card??!!

Next a Jean Beliveau Dominion base card /99. Cost, $3
What kind of world are we living in where base cards are /99 AND $3 is considered a really good price?
Again, some colour would be nice.

Last up today is a little fella who doesn't get much hobby love, even from Canadiens collectors. Not sure why, because from what I remember, he was our best player for quite some time.
Mats Naslund game used Team Sweden jersey.

Cost? A buck. Not complaining.... but this and Charlie cost me less than that base card I just showed you........
Cats and Dogs, living together........

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Cardboard Ketchup - Ice Cold Edition

Continuing the story from Waxaholic, I'll put up highlights from two trade/gift packages... The first is from The Angels In Order. Yeah, I know. Hockey cards from a baseball guy in Texas who roots for the Angels. Go figure. But I'll take 'em. Tom said he could help with my quest to complete the '92/93 UD set, and sent over 22 cards off of my list.
I was wondering what Rob was smiling about,  and then I saw the half naked chick in the background.
for my Vancouver Canuck friends... Kirk McLean. This was the period when goalies still wore leather or 'leather look' pads, but had them colour co-ordinated to their team colours.
a Teemu Selanne Young Gun.... although I thought his rc was earlier..... Hmm.....

The next lot is from Casey of Drop the Gloves fame. We all know Casey is a Bruins fan, but we like him anyways. Although when the first card I saw out of the envelope was a Rene Bourque card, and then another.... I thought I had been Bipped.
But then Chipper appeared, and then the package really took off quality wise....
I saw that some of you recived cards from Casey at the same time and posted cards from the '70/71 Topps set. Casey must've found a shoebox in an attic somewhere, 'cause he sent me some too.

On Right Wing, the Roadrunner, Yvan Cournoyer

on Defence, sorry, I forgot it's American Topps. On Defense, Jacques Laperriere

his Defence Defense partner on the blue line, Terry Harper.
At Center, Ralph Backstrom.
On Left Wing, Pete 'Little M' Mahovlich.
we have a substitution! At Center, Jean Beliveau!

That is one hell of a lineup. If I could trade Backstrom for the Montreal Goalie in this set, Rogie Vachon.... it would be unbeatable.
Ah heck, put Backstrom in net and this lineup would probably still win the Cup.

Thanks for the cards boys!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

2011-12 ITG Between the Pipes Cross Canada Tour

It's that time of year again... playoff hockey and In The Game's Between The Pipes. Glorious.
If you're not a fan of goalies.... stop reading now and head over to Crocheting for Beginners. For the rest of you, prepare for a visual feast.

In The Game has what they call their 'Cross Canada Tour' every year where at select card shops on certain days, a party is held based around opening boxes of cards. Count me in.
This year's party at Maple Leaf Sports was held yesterday.
But you don't care about that, you want to see the cards.........

To be honest, BTP has been lacking the last year or two.... suffering from the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" curse. Well this year, ITG stepped it up. They improved a product that was already top notch, and didn't wreck it. Hard to do these days.

First up, the base set. This year consisting of 200 cards, divided into sections.
Future Stars - Cards 1 - 63

Featuring some undrafted minor league players like Malcolm Subban (projected 2012 1st round draft pick) or young stars in the NHL already like playoff hero, Braden Holtby of the Washington Capitals.
Completed page!

Next up are the Stars of the Game, Cards 64 - 99
The stars you expect are all here, save for one, Martin Brodeur. Ah the lovely licensing issues rear their ugly head once more. Hopefully Marty will return soon.

Completed page! (it seems a concious effort by ITG to use photos whenever possible that contain both the mask, and the players face. Pure conjecture by me, but I like it.)
Then we have Decades, featuring goalies from the past. Cards 100 -154
 I had to be careful not to show off all of the '70's masks.... my personal fave.
You don't usually see the Eagle's Black mask......
I love that Meloche mask, one of my all time faves....

I believe Peeters still has the record for the longest undefeated streak. And there's friend of the blog, Gary Simmons, the Cobra!
Completed page!
Very cool to see, and kudos to ITG getting Jim Carey back into the hobby once again. Jim has been rather reclusive since retiring from pro hockey, shying away from his past. Even as far as pretending he's not himself when asked for autographs by fans. Welcome back Jim!

In a nod to our warm weather south of the border breatherin, Stars and Stripes. Cards 155 - 169
That mask must weigh 12 pounds.

Completed page!
and to further alienate Canadians, we have another section of foreigners called La Belle Province.
(kidding. kind of.) Cards 170 - 189
another completed page.
The last section of the base set features the real unsung heroes of hockey. Goalies who played for brand new expansion teams, as well as International Pioneers. Cards 190 - 200

Can you tell Wayne never wore a mask?
And Vladimir Dzurilla, one of the best goalies in the history of hockey. too bad he never got the exposure over here that say, Vladislav Tretiak did.

Last page!
I love, love, love the set this year. From the new sub sections to the styling and design, especially the use of more vibrant colours. Well done.
Of course, I wouldn't be a collector nowadays without bitching... so if I had to come up with something I didn't like about it, it would have to be that with 3 boxes (432 cards), I'm still 13 cards short of a 200 card set. I have four cards of a lot of the players, but still missing 13. Not cool. Someone's algorithm needs adjusting.
(BTW, I want to thank Jay for giving me two boxes worth of base cards, as he was just chasing 'hits.')

Speaking of hits. Let's get to what I got in my box.

It's ITG BTP's 10th anniversary this year, so you'll see that theme pop up in several areas. Like this 10th anniversary insert set.
I ended up with Jimmy Howard, Turk Broda and Carey Price.
A perennial favourite, the Masked Men insert set. Again, this year celebrates 10 years by die-cutting the ruby base insert. And again my new useless part time scanner insists on cutting off part of the die-cut.

I am all in collecting this set... and managed to acquire quite a few from others yesterday. I'll show those off in another post. (I'm now at 25/50)
As always, these Masked Men also come in Silver ( /90 copies) and Gold ( /10 copies)
These are not die-cut like the base Ruby version. As my friend bamlinden said, finally something for the little guy.
I pulled a Gold version of Jonathan Quick. Cool. I know a Quick collector. She'll be happy.
There are several subsets of autographs to pull.... Autos are inserted at 1:8 packs with 18 packs per box.
I ended up with three autos.
First, Seth Martin. Approaching Epic on the Coolness Scale. Seth was the St Louis Blues very first goalie. (teamed with Glenn Hall)

I also pulled a Short Print, a Stars and Stripes auto of Jason Bacashihua. Jason was a 1st round pick in 2001 by Dallas. He has belonged to, in order, the Stars, Blues, Avalanche, Capitals, Avalanche again, and now the Flyers. His only NHL action was 38 games in the 2005/06 and 2006/07 seasons with St Louis.
Blues hot box!
I also got a base auto of prospect Drew Owsley. (The Blues need to draft him....)
I honestly had to check online to see if ITG had made a mistake, or if that really was Drew's signature. Sadly, it is his signature. Card companies need to start holding these guys to a minimum standard. Or at least minimum letters. Something.

Relic cards are found at the same ratio as autos, 1:8 packs.

I pulled this Tomas Vokoun double relic card limited to /40 copies.
I'll go out of order here a bit to show off another card. At these 'Cross Canada Tour' stops, when you bust open a box of ITG's specified product, you get a special relic card that is 1/1
I got........
yeah, Tomas Vokoun. He follows me.
You can see on the back where and when I got the card.

In each pack of ITG products, there's always a decoy card. (Damn pack searchers!) They used to have fun with them by putting the logos of CHL, OHL, and WHL teams on them... people like myself collected them for fun. (each decoy card is also worth 1 'point.' You can save up these points and cash 200 of them in for a special relic card from ITG in a specified time period)

Then, the fun stopped. For a few years it was just plain, bland '1 point' cards.
This year, the fun is back!

11 of them to be exact....
Carey Price, Patrick Roy, Gerry Cheevers, Jacques Plante, Georges Vezina, Johnny Bower, Henrik Lundqvist, Roberto luongo, Curtis Joseph, Tony Esposito and Terry Sawchuk.
I managed to finish off Price, Roy and Cheevers while I was there by swapping/begging, and dumpster diving.
The others are....... still in progress.
A nice idea!

Oh, I forgot about my other relic card out of my box.............

Vladislav Tretiak Countrymen Gold numbered /10. And peeps, that leather pad is awesome. I don't know if the Soviets used deerskin like us Canucks... maybe it's caribou or Yeti.... I don't care. It's fantastic.

So a special thanks to ITG for the Tour and the product, and to Darren at Maple Leaf Sports for his usual great hosting efforts.
If you're in Canada or the U.S.A, check out ITG's website for details on the Cross Canada Tour and the Collecting in the U.S.A. Tour.