Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Caving In at the Card Show

The monthly card show was last weekend. It wasn't a great show to be sure. Being just before Xmas, I wasn't even going to go because I wasn't going to spend any $$$, saving that because of being Santa's proxy.
But I decided to go and wish a Merry Ho Ho to a few people that I don't see a lot of the time other than at card centric functions.
Got that? Go, say hi, do NOT spend money.
You're snickering right now.... I can hear it....
Okay, you're right, I did spend a little, but it's NOT MY FAULT!.
Let me explain.
A new product came out last week, Upper Deck's Team Canada. It's a sweet product. Right in my wheelhouse as it were. If it's Team Canada, it's me. I am Captain Canuck after all....
But, it is also Xmas. So no wax cracking for me. This will continue into January because, well Boxing week shopping is almost as bad.
But as I walk into the show, a buddy of mine that sets up there every month pulls out a small stack of cards and hands them to me.
He had busted a bunch of Team Canada, and had pulled some cards for me.
Now how can I tell him to pack sand when he went through all that trouble??? How rude!
So I flip through the cards and ask him how much? He explains them to me so I know what I'm purchasing... I call this "softening me up for the big hit", but it wasn't that bad.
The first few base cards (5 in all) he gave to me free if I bought the other three cards. Done. He always gives me a good deal.
The base are really nice. My only issue is there are no stats, only a write up on the back.

 Love this Team Canada uni....  classic.

 Now the cards I had to actually pay for. I spent $5 for these three. (see? Not so bad?)

Apparently this Gallagher Program of Excellence is a super duper ultra rare Snuffleupagus short print. Nabbed it for $3.
 Then two inserts from the Special Edition set.
Carey Price
 and Brendan Gallagher again. Each for $1.
 I also grabbed the P.K. Subban from this insert set from one of the local card shops for another $1.

So okay. Spending $5 wasn't that bad. But then I found out that another seller had updated his dollar box.


Okay, a quick look, no harm in that, right?

More snickering. Yeah.... another $5 disappeared.

First up, a black bordered Lars Eller from Victory. Again, apparently these are hard to pull. For a buck he goes in my Lars Eller binder.

Yes, I have a Lars Eller binder. Don't judge me.

A rookie jersey card of Raffy Diaz.

 I couldn't leave Raffy behind. He looks so sad....

An on card auto of then Leafs 'tender, Jonas Gustavsson. I really like that particular year's Private Signings. Panini doesn't do much of anything right, so when they do, I have to give them props.

Jonas is looking into your soul........

A rookie double swatch of Louis Leblanc. Last year this was around $40. Now, a buck.

I tried to explain to people last year, but no one listens.... Anyways, for a card out of /125 and he's in his Team Canada gear, I'll take it.

And finally a card that is just flat out awesome.

Josh Gorges from Limited. The seam is so thick it's busting out of the card. It's like an ITG product, except for the Limited logo in the corner. And it's /49 too. A really clean design and a great swatch.

So fine. I caved and spent $10. What are you going to do? Kick me out of the union? Ha! You've all done it. You were hoping I did it too... that's why you're here reading this drivel.

Thanks for that, by the way....

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

I went to a card show and what did I buy?

if you've been following along on Waxaholic, (and if not, what the hell man?) you've seen the true vintage baseball that I picked up at the last show. A 1940 Play Ball and two 1956 Topps... so the question is, did I grab any vintage hockey as well?
And the answer is..... no.
I could've. But the player selection vs the cost ratio was imbalanced. So I satisfied myself with baseball, and went new on the hockey.
At the time is was very unsatisfying to look through all the shiny multi coloured patch autos fresh from their bright wrappers after being around real baseball cards.
But looking back on it now, I like what I got. So I'm pleased with the overall experience.
Here's what I grabbed. No real rhyme or reason to it... just cards of players from my team. I don't know why I brought my want lists to this show... no one had any boxes to dig through.
An oversized box topper rookie MVP of Alex Galchenyuk. $3.

And his regular sized friend. $2.

My first Young Gun of the brand new Upper Deck offering. This one of defenceman Nathan Beaulieu. $2

And a freebie! I got all four of these cards from the same guy, this Alex was thrown in for free. Yay free!

Another freebie! Blogger put these out of order, but this auto was thrown in for free with the purchase of the next card which is....

A cool insert of Carey Price for $3.

I don't normally go for the patch auto stuff.... but for $4 I'll take a chance on Mr Dumont. By the way... nice sig. Is that french, English, or douche? But for $4, what do you expect?

My most expensive card of the lot, a $5 insert of Jarred Tinordi. It's shiny, it's purple.
My wife really likes that one.

So not exactly the same provenance as the baseball, but I had fun with it. And they look good in my player binders.
I just wish I knew if that purple one was rare or not so I know if I got stiffed.

I think I got stiffed.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Connie Broden 1932-2013

Did you know Connie Broden is the only person to ever win the World Championships and the Stanley Cup in the same year?
Did you know that he won two Stanley Cups despite only playing 13 games?

This is Connie's only card ever issued. I finally managed to track down two copies and send them off to Mr Broden to be signed last year.

Connie Broden passed away Saturday, November 23, 2013 at the age of 81.

If you'd like to take two minutes and read about him and his career, including some great quotes, please go HERE . It's well worth it and far more eloquent than I could ever be.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Set them freeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!

At the last card show I went to (see previous post), I found a small stack of cards in a box that I had no idea what they were. They looked like this.
 They had a type of wax paper stuck to them. And I mean stuck. The paper was old and yellowed.... the backs looked like this.

I've seen recent versions of this set and I like them. They're pretty sharp. Asking around if the paper peels off or not resulted in answers ranging from "No idea" to "Doubtful after all these years" to the ever popular "If you peel them, they won't be as valuable anymore..."

You know I was going to ignore that last one. Yeah.... I'm worried about value. If I was worried about value, I wouldn't be buying cards, let me tell you.

But for $2, I decide to give one a try. (Obviously) So I brought Guy home with me and went to work.

Actually, after getting it started, it went fairly smoothly.

And voila! No. I think that's Voici!

Shiny and clear Guy set free from his prison forever.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Hall of Fame card show autographs.

I went to the big card show over the weekend. No, not the one in Toronto. The one right here in Calgary. Okay. It might not be the big show. It's not even big. Kinda sad actually. But it's all I got. So I try not to miss it.
I  managed to pick up a nice stack of cards this time out. Most were recent releases... I'll show those in another post. For this one I'll feature just three cards. Each a gem in it's own right.
First, a surprise '69/70 Topps Jean Beliveau. $3
 only a little love bend in the bottom right corner stops it from being perfect. Or does it?

Second an on card auto of Hall of Famer (*cough*) Clark Gillies  $3
 a beautiful card like that for only $3? Craziness. Of course, I had to defeat bamlinden in a spirited game of RockPaperScissorsLizardSpock before I could claim it as mine.

and last but not least, another on card auto of a Hall of Famer. This one of USA great Cammi Granato. $5
$11 for three Hall of Fame players. Two autos and vintage greatness.

Anyone else score anything cool at weekend shows?

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

And just think.....

most Canadian team want nothing to do with these..... "distractions".

we may have to re-think this.....

Thursday, August 29, 2013

a rare trade...

I haven't been adding too much to the old hockey portfolio since I bought two boxes of the brand new OPC.
I'm nearing completion of that set, and slowly working on the retro set. If you have any swaps, let me know.
But I have managed to make two trades in the last month or so... trade nights have really ground to a halt lately. There was a discussion last week between 5 or 6 of us where the consensus was the only reason we even bother showing up anymore was to catch up with one another, and maybe bust a few packs. Trading, for all intents and purposes, was dead.
That said, I still ended up with two cards. Both from the recently released UD Trilogy. Seems to be a popular set among the cool kids.
First, a triple game/event used jersey card. I'm assuming game used for Koivu and Eller, event for the rookie Galchenyuk. I gave up an insert of Nail Yakupov from this year's Score set for it.

Next was a pickup of rookie of the year runner up, Brendan Gallagher.
These Crystal cards are of course see through, and very thick. I hadn't even seen one before this one. Going the other way was a TJ Oshie 2011 Limited /5 and a dual Curtis Joseph jersey card.

I also saw a Galchenyuk Crystal /99.... but I didn't have enough ammo to obtain it.

These two fit nicely into my home, and I hope to find more Crystal cards.... they look pretty cool. But if not, I'll just keep plugging along on my OPC set.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Falling behind.... with Milt Schmidt to help me.

No surprise that I'm behind in posting all of the cool stuff I've acquired or has been sent to me by all of the cool people I know. (Hint: if you're not cool, surround yourself with cool people. Therefore you are cool by association.)

I'm also going to attempt to set a record in the number of times I type 'cool' in this post.


Anyways, life, like it tends to do keeps me otherwise occupied. And blogging is the first to suffer. Although I always said if blogging becomes a chore, I'd quit. So not posting all that often is fine with me. If there's still someone out there reading, then all the more better. More better? Wow. Back to grammar school.

So I decided to make an effort and get some of these cards scanned and posted.

I decided to make an effort.

I didn't necessarily make that effort.

See the difference?


What I did end up doing was scanning a card I bought today. This might be a speed record for me of some sort.
I saw it at one of my local card shops. I asked how much as it hadn't been placed in the case yet. $10.

So I thought about it while looking at other stuff.

Then I went back to it.... looked at it again. I was going to buy it when I realized..... it was a reprint. Yeah, okay. I'm having an off day.... give me one, won't you?

So I put it back down.

Back to browsing.

but I kept going back to it.... it's a really nice auto.....

Will you take $8?, I hear myself say....


So now it's home with me.... AND scanned..... AND posted.

Pretty cool if you ask me.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

2013-14 OPC Hockey Box Break Review

Last week, or maybe the week before, I bought a couple of jumbo packs of the new 2013-14 Score Hockey release.
I was going to scan and review them, but then I realized that it was SCORE AND NO ONE GIVES A HOOT.
So I filed the cards away and forgot about them.
But today is the day.... the 2013-14 OPC hockey came out today!!!!! Woot WOOT!

Before we dive in and take a look see at what Santa brought us in August... I'd like to take a second to talk about numbers.
No, I wasn't just sponsored by Sesame Street. (but seriously, how cool would that be???) I'm a numbers guy. Out of my 8 courses my senior year, 3 were maths and 4 were sciences. That continued into college.
I can do most math in my head. It just comes naturally. I'm no Charlie Epps, don't get me wrong... but I can't understand how some people can't do any math, let alone complex stuff in their head.
But I can't do a cartwheel either, so what do I know?

You may be wondering where the heck I'm going with this... bear with me... I'm a numbers guy, not a writer.
As a child, watching the game, or reading the backs of my hockey cards for hours... stats were my thing. I poured over them... memorized them. I'd follow the league stats in The Hockey News. Remember when they used to have PAGES of stats in The Hockey News?
As a result... I can look at tables, charts, reports, and the information I want just floats off of the page and I can extrapolate from there.
One of the things that pops out to me that others may or may not see is patterns. Remember those questions? "What is the next three numbers in this sequence? 17, 95, 563, ..., ..., ...

I lived for those.

Word problems? If a train travelling north at 80mph leaves Calgary at 3pm, and a train travelling south at 45mph leaves Winnipeg at 4pm, when will they meet?

All over it like a fat kid on a smartie.

But back to patterns... there was a definite pattern I observed while opening this box. And it didn't take a Mensa candidate to see it either. I can only assume Upper Deck sold their computers and bought Macs or something... follow me on this...

But first, the box. Here's the top. Patrick Kane is our fashion model for the season.

32 packs, 8 cards per pack.
And here's the bottom. I have no idea why all card companies don't do this... it should be mandatory. It's not like it'd cost any more.... anyways. I like seeing cards on the box. I believe there are 4 different box bottoms to chase.
the wrapper, remarkably similar to the box.
The base set is still 500 cards, with 100 short prints for cards 501-600. Unlike the last few years, the last 100 SP's are not divided into 50 rookies and 50 Legends. This year it's 99 rookies and 1 checklist.
Cool beans.

Here are the base cards.... I scanned five of them as there are 5 different colour schemes.

Cards #1-100 are represented by the Mule, Johan Franzen.
Colours - Light Blue and Red
Notes: If you're not interested in the whole numbers thing, ignore the Notes.
Cards 1-100 : 16 in the box #'s 3, 8, 13, 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 74, 79, 84, 89, 94, 99

Cards #101-200 shown here by Carey Price
Colours - Yellow and Olive Green
Notes: Cards 101-200 : 21 in the box, #'s 104, 109, 114, 119, 124, 129, 134, 139, 144, 149, 154, 159, 164, 169, 174, 179, 184, 189, 194, 199 and 111

Cards #201-300 we have Evgeni Malkin
Colours - Gold and Pink
Notes: Cards 201-300 : 21 in the box, #'s 204, 209, 214, 219, 224, 229, 234, 239, 247, 252, 257, 262, 267, 272, 277, 282, 287, 292, 297 and 276, 281, 286

Cards 301-400 Say hi to Wayne Gretzky. Wayne Gretzky??? I guess there are legends in the base set... not sure how many. Less than 50 though... at least it's a new pic of Wayne. From fairly early in his career judging by the Titan.
Colours - Orange and Green
Notes: Cards 301-400 : 54 in the box. I won't list them all, but the pattern continues...

Cards 401 to 500 - Holy schnikes! Jarome Iginla in a Pens uni....
Colours : Purple and Light Blue
Notes: Cards 401-500 : 70 in the box. Here are the ones I'm missing.... 404, 409, 414, 419, 424, 429, 434, 439, 444, 449, 454, 459, 464, 469, 474, 479, 484, 489, 494, 499, and 471, 476, 481, 486, 491, 496, 500

Cards 501-600 The Rookies
Colours : Red for the Eastern Conference and Blue for the Western Conference.
Notes: There should be 16 SP rookies per box, I only got 15.
I guess I should show the backs of these suckers.... fairly straightforward. Number top left as it should be, vital statistics, and playing stats. Everything you need on the back. Well done.
The retro parallel is back this year.....

When I opened a loose pack at the store and got to the one per pack retro, the LCS owner started singing Jimi Hendrix' Purple Haze....
I'll go out on a limb here and say that every hundred cards has a different colour scheme here as well, but I can't confirm it because ...... of the 32 retros I got, the numbers are 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60, 65, 70, 75, 80, 85, 90, 95, 100, 105, 110, 115, 120, 125, 130, 135, 140, 145, 150, 155, 160, 165, 170, 175, 180, 185, 190.... so nothing in the 200-500 range.

The useless mirror parallel is back as well... 8 per box. The base is a regular foil and the Rookie SP's are a gold foil. I did get 5 SP Rookies. Now to trade them for regular base ones...

Elsewhere in parallel hell is the black bordered parallel of the foil parallel. These are two per box and numbered out of /100

Again this season we have an insert set of stickers! 100 cards again this year. They are 8 per box, I got 10.
OPC must have had some yellow ink left over from last years base set....

Replacing the unpopular Pop Up set from last year that didn't Pop Up, are equally unpopular Rings.
OPC did this in the early '70's and why they brought them back, no one knows. 50 in the set, 2 per box.
A popular chase set is the manufactured patch cards found this year at 1 per every 3 boxes. I did manage to pull one.....
I should be able to swap this for something really good that I actually want.

So there you have it... thanks for putting up with my numbers rant... I cannot believe the collation this year. What happened? Writing an algorithm for this shouldn't be that hard....

The vast difference in quantity of 1-100, 101-200, 201-300, and the high numbers is staggering, but throughout the run, either having or missing cards by 5 is way too weird.

Let me know how your box breaks go....

EDIT: UPDATE... by reading a few of the forums where box/case breakers hang out... people are losing their minds over this. Apparently it's product wide and not even case breakers are completing sets.