Wednesday 31 October 2012

2011-12 Panini Stickers #255 - Tomas Holmstrom

Watching the Penguins play the Flyers Dec.13 2006 on ESPN Classic. Great game! I've been missing hockey coverage and am very happy that this channel has been playing so many classic hockey matches.

Here's another one of my most recent through the mail success' for todays blog post.

Holmstrom is an example of the Red Wings' drafting senses as he was picked 257th overall in the 1994 NHL Entry Draft. He was been a member of the Wings since, helping the team win four Stanley Cup championships.

Homstrom is known as one of the best at becoming a weapon inside the paint, creating havoc on opposing goalies and porducing a screen for the shot. What can I say - 'Holmer' does the job.

I sent him a couple of cards to have signed several months ago; this first one is from a 2011-12 Panini Sticker, probably my favorite item that I collect through the mail to receive signed.

The other card I sent with my request is from the 2010-11 Upper Deck Victory set. I decided to pick this 10/11 Victory base, it's a nice looking set for TTMing. This Holmstrom auto turned out pretty good.
This card (above) has been added to the Traders bucket as I'm sure there are other Holmstrom fans out there who would like an auto in their collection or a set builder in need of this card.

Tuesday 30 October 2012

2011-12 Score #408 - Kevin Shattenkirk (100!)

I've decided to blog about on my 2011-12 Score hard signed collection progress.

My last through the mail success came just a few days ago from Kevin Shattenkirk of the St. Louis Blues. Shattenkirk was Colorado's 1st round pick at the 2007 NHL Entry Draft and has shown signs of becoming a prospect blueliner in the NHL since his move to the Blues in 2011. He hit career highs in all statistics this past season playing 81 games and notching 9 goals and 43 points.
Kevin Shattenkirk signed 3/3 of the cards I sent away with my autograph request. The other two are for a couple of other set colletctors who have helped me out tremendously on the Score set.
I was happy to see these come back as I sent this one out to his residence during the tail end of the pre-season. I guess the lockout came in my favour.
Shattenkirk is also the 100th card to go into my set. It's hard to believe the amount of gratitude that I've received from the players and at how quickly the set has hit 100.

Sunday 28 October 2012

2010-11 Donruss Mario Lemieux Ice Kings #12

It seems that I've been collecting the 2010-11 Ice Kings set - a pull here, a pull there, you start picking them up at card shows and before you know it your specificaly making trades for them.

2010-11 Donruss Mario Lemieux
Ice Kings #12
Well, the later sorta happened that way - it just so happened that Seb from Hell's Valuable Collectibles had the card of Mario Lemieux from the Ice Kings set and was interested in one of the cards that I had posted previously.  A trade was then comensed!

Along with the card I sent a nice little package his way that he seemed pretty happy with.  Nothing against Stephane Lefebvre but trading an Electric Ice card of him for my most sought after card from the Ice Kings set would have felt like robbery.

Monday 22 October 2012

Recent Additions To My Collection

I've been spending a lot of my hobby time on Zistle lately; it's been a very convenient and helpful tool in the ongoing task of organizing my card collection.  I hope to upload most of my collection to the library and attempt to create concreate want and trade lists in the future.  Check it out and sign up if you haven't already.  Add me as a friend while you're at it!

As for cards, I did receive a few new additions over the past couple of days.  No Sidney Crosby relic/autos but they'll all fit nicely into their sets under construction.

First up we have a couple of new 'Hard Hats' from the 1997-98 Donruss Studio product.

These Bure and Shanahan cards help me chip away a little deeper into this die-cut set of 24.  Just 20 more to search out ;)

Another 'One Timers' insert towards the 1997-98 Be A Player set project.  Jumbo Joe in his Bruins uniform, rookie year stud.  Pretty simple but I've always had a hankering for these 'One Timers' cards.  Lately I've found myself picking up a piece from the set here and there; as of now I own just 3 from the series but that will probably change sooner than later.  I think I mght have picked up Joe for about a quarter, free shipping.

Wednesday 17 October 2012

Hard Hats

A couple of weeks ago I decided to go out on a hunt for a few insert sets that were produced during the late 90s.  One of the aforementioned insert sets that I had hoped to pick up a few cards from were these 1997-98 Donruss Studio 'Hard Hats' die-cut inserts, numbered out of 3000.

Although I've opened my fair share of 97' Studio over the years, I've never actually owned a 'Hard Hats' insert.   These are pretty simple cards but the die-cut edge around the helmet really draws me into the set.  Unfortunately the hockey helmets depicted on the cards do not replicate the type of helmet the player represented is wearing.
The Lindros and Forsberg were being sold together as a lot at a price that I couldn't pass up.

Saturday 13 October 2012

Cam Neely Ice Kings

While on my way to work this morning, I stopped into a local card shop to pick up a few one-touch holders.  I've been slowly condensing my card collection - sorting through the boxes and binders; removing the cards that have no place in my yard.

It's not often that I see anything in the display case at the hobby store that catches my eye and pulls me in; but during this visit, it was a different story, as I walked away with a new card added to my collection.

2010-11 Donruss Cam Neely Ice Kings #4

For just $3 I was able to pick up this Cam Neely card from the 2010-11 Donruss Ice Kings set. In my opinion this was a fair deal as it basically cost the shipping charges if I were to purchase it online.  This is my fourth Ice Kings card from this insert set.  I hope to pick up more along the way.

Sunday 7 October 2012

Adopting Cardboard

It was a great weekend and as per usual, way too short.

I use to hate living back in my hometown and couldn't wait too get out off there as a younger man, it's funny how that leaf has changed.  I wouldn't like to live there exactly but it's always nice to go back and live your life the way it was 17 years ago - how many people can say that?  Not much has changed.  Small towns.

Hell, my friend since Kindergarden is attending community college from home; I just so happened to 'adopt' a few cards into my collection.  A bunch of cards in toploaders from about 17 years ago, collected when he was on the whole hockey card collecting rage during elementary school .  He didn't want them and knew that I was a hockey fan so he offered me the cards.  I took them of course.

It just so happens that I've been on a late 90s hockey era kick lately, so this was going to be a fun pickup right off the bat.

1996-97 Leaf Eric Lindros #148
The "Big E" from this 96-97 Leaf set was on top of the short stack.  An understandable selection for the toploader during '97, I can see where he was coming from with this choice.

1995-96 Topps O-Pee-Chee Parallel Mats Sundin #150
A very nice looking card of Mats Sundin.  I remember him having this card back in grade five.  He was a Toronto Maple Leafs fan and he now hates hockey altogether.

1997-98 Score 'Check It' Brendan Shanahan #3
This was a very nice find - I've been collating the '97 "Check-It" set from Score for a little while now along with the "Sudden Death" insert set for a much longer while (check out the '97 insert set from this product by the way, personally it's one of my favorite insert sets).  This Shanahan card was a very useful freebie to add to my collection.

Is that Radek Dvorak?  Funny thing, I always end up picking Dvorak in one of my EA Sports Be A GM modes during Fantasy Draft.  His frontal status on the card almost takes away from the focus on Shanahan. 

1997-98 Score "Golden Blades" #37 Trevor Kidd

1997-98 Pacific Paramount Nelson Emerson #3
I picked up a lot of Pacific Paramount as a kid but have lost almost all of it over the years through moving.   I'd like to begin to pick up more from this set.

1995-96 Upper Deck 'Electric Ice' Mark Recchi #490, Brian Leetch #487, Sylvain Lebreve #342 and Curtis Brown / 1996 WJC #531
'Electric Ice' parallels from 1995-96 Upper Deck.  The shot on the Mark Recchi card wins as my favorite in the lot.

Got to give some love to World Junior player cards from the 90s as well.  Curtis Brown is a name I'm familiar with being attached with the Sabres organization as a rookie.  He spent his last few years in Europe.

1995-96 Upper Deck Collector's Choice 'Players Choice', 1996-97 Donruss Elite, 1995-96 Score

Nice back to this Score!

1991-92 Upper Deck, 1990-91 Upper Deck Felix Potvin

I love these Potvin cards!  Ì already owned this Potvin Upper Deck card and have always liked the jersey and equipment full blue color scheme and the pre-`Felix The Cat`bucket mask look.  It`s stored in a top loader of my own because it`s one of my favorite looking goalie cards.  This one is very useful as it will fill a vacant spot in the set binder.

The 1990-91 Upper Deck is considered Potvins rookie card.  Like I said previously; I`m a fan cardboard photography of players in their World Junior sweaters, especially of payers that have retired.  Look at Potvins equiment, the puck markings on his blocker look like battles scars.  Didn`t have this card previously so this one was also a nice treat.

So I managed to pick up a few cards that I were looking for unintentionally, it was a nice little unexpected gesture during the trip.

Thursday 4 October 2012

Thanksgiving Collection Pickups

Thursday morning, pretty chill here on the home  front.  Me and my fiance are heading out home (well, my hometown) tomorrow to spend a little time back at my parents for the weekend.  I'm
excited, can't wait until this work day ends and the packing process begins.

Anyway a blog post commences. I've had a couple solid months on random pick ups to my personal collection and a few good things to trade.  Honoured in thy names of all pilgrims and indians.  I'll try to make it good.

1978-79 O-Pee-Chee Mike Bossy #115 RC
Mike Bossy is still on my mind - my brother has actually gotten me into the New York Islanders dynasty, I`ve found myself watching and reading a lot about it over the past few months.  Mike Bossy has been my favorite player from that roster so as a collector I eventually had to pick up a rookie card of his.  One of the best players to ever lace up the skates, the NHL's all-team leader in average goals scored per regular season game, and is one of only five players to score 50 goals in 50 games.  Watch game 5 of the 1984 Patrick Semifinals against the New York Rangers, Bossy steps up to the plate at about 4 minutes in and scores a big goal to tie the game 2-2 before the end of the second period.  At about 5:30 minutes in and you see Bossy walking towards the dressing room ahead of all his teammates.  I thought it was pretty cool.  It brought on a lot of momentum as you can tell by the reaction of the Islanders walking off the ice going into to the third.  The Islanders went on to win the game in overtime.

Take a look at that Greg Halon penalty at 26 minutes, what the hell was he thinking?  Haha

2011-12 Panini Limited Matt Duchene 'Trade Team Marks' #12 /99 Auto

I've wanted a Duchene auto but couldn't decide on a card, I picked this one up as it was hard signed on a white background.  Personally I think the card would be nice if they had decided to use an image of Duchene with his head up.  It would have been nice to see a different picture used on the back as well.  But overall a nice autograph on a clean looking card from Panini, I wouldn't have choosen it if I didn't like it.

2012-13 Score Team Score Henrik Lundqvist #TS6 and Jonathan Quick #TS12

I had last Sunday morning off last weekend, a rare occurance as I'm usually working at 12 and miss the weekly flea market.  There's usually a couple of regular tables and s few tables with a dinged up binder as filler.  I don't really like going there as the prices are pretty high. but it's nice to pick up a few cards without paying a shipping charge.

I picked up this duo from the latest Team Score release, 2012-13.  Nice photography and it showcases most of the superstars in the NHL.  Maybe a nice set to pick up, I'mstill  on the fence about it.

201-12 Donruss Ice |Kings Mike Bossy #10 and Glenn Hall #6

I really like these 2011-12 Donruss 'Ice Kings' cards.  And another Mike Bossy, even if it isn't vintage it's still from a nice looking set.  I had a Beliveau from this 'Ice Kings' set in my collection already so these additions make it 3/15.

1997-98 Pinnacle Be A Player One Timers Jaromir Jagr #7
A card from a set from when I was young.  I've seen this card at the market several weeks ago and regretted not getting it.  A .50 cent card Ha  Anyway glad it was there when I came back.  I think I had this one in my collection before but it was stolen while in school.

1997-98 Pinnacle Mint International Mint Pavel Bure #6

One of the most recent members of the Hockey Hall Of Fame.  I think I might already have a card from this insert set released by 1997-98 Pinnacle Mint.  6 cards in this small insert set highlighting six of the most exciting players in the NHL from outside of North America.

Anyway guys, to all you fellow Canadians have a Happy Thanksgiving and enjoy your weekend.

Tuesday 2 October 2012

1997-98 Donruss Leaf Hobby Box Recap

Waking up with a splitting headache isn't always the best way to rev up your Tuesday morning. 
The benefits of collecting cards from the 90s is the fact that I can pick up cards that I yearned-for as a child for a fraction of the price they were when they were first released.
Lately I've began to focus on completing a few of my incomplete sets from the 90s that I still have and love to this day.  When this box of 1997-98 Donruss Leaf recently caught my eye I just had to have it as it was a prime set during my collecting days as a pre-teen and hockey fan.
I think I enjoy busting a box of cards from the mid-90s just as much as any modern day product.  Love the players, the fun inserts and it's almost like I'm cracking open a time capsule. 
Patrick Roy #128, Jim Carey #71, Marc Denis / Checklist #105
Here's St. Patrick looking like a boss, the elusive former Vezina winner Jim Carey in Bruins garb and an eye pleasing card of a Marc Denis checklist card.

As far as completing the base set is concerned, I think I did pretty good.  I'm unsure of how many cards that I needed pre-box opening but when all was said and done the 'want list' was taken down to a minimal size of just 5.

#7 Martin Brodeur
#40 Jozef Stumpel
#50 Daren Puppa
#51 Petr Nedved
#75 Janne Niinimaa

Patrick Lalime #111, Felix Potvin #24, Kirk McLean #74
Lalime's mask design has always been a personal favorite of mine; cutest mask in NHL history?

I decided to choose a few of my favorite netminder cards from the break to showcase the base design.  A good example of the progress made from the box would be the fact that I needed all the cards above towards the set with the only exception being Lalime.

Vinny Prospal / Gold Leaf Rookie #, Alyn McCauley / Gold Leaf Rookie #
I also pulled two of these short printed Gold Leaf Rookies of Vaclav Prospal and Alyn McCauley from the box; the Gold Leaf Rookies subset consists of 20 cards with some future All-Star names in the bag.   They have a decent looking design in my opinion, fresh and simple.  The hue at the bottom representing team colors really adds to the appeal.

Prospal is still enjoying a career in the NHL as a member of the Blue Jackets.  McCauley had an up-and-down sort of journey through the league (injury plauged, couldn't produce at the same level as he had in the minors, Selke Trophy nod in 2003-04), hanging up his skates in 2007.  I had a Tomas Vokoun from this subset in my collection from years ago, glad I kept it around.

I still need 17 more of these pieces of cardboard to put a damper on it.

#148 Marc Denis [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#149 Boyd Devereaux [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#150 Joe Thornton [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#151 Sergei Samsonov [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#153 Erik Rasmussen [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#154 Patrick Marleau [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#155 Olli Jokinen RC [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#156 Chris Phillips [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#158 Chris Dingman RC [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#159 Daniel Cleary [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#160 Juha Lind RC [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#161 Jean-Yves Leroux RC [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#162 Brad Isbister [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#163 Vadim Sharifijanov [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#164 Alexei Morozov [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#166 Vaclav Varada [Gold Leaf Rookie]
#167 Jaroslav Svejkovsky [Gold Leaf Rookie]

Yikes.  What a tedious looking subset list to pursue.

Another short print subset, "Gamers".  Basically a a who's who collection of players in the league during that period.  Another 20 card subset injected into the 200 card base set.  I managed to pull 3 of these guys from the box and also had another 3 (Hull, Grettzky and Tkachuk) cards from this set in my collection.  Smyth and Brodeur are still hanging in there, each playing for their respected teams listed on their 97-98 cards.

Smyth spent 10.5 seasons as a member of the Oilers before being traded like currency during and after the 06-07 season; things came full-circle when he signed with the Oilers again in 2011-12.

Brodeur signed a 2-year deal with the Devils during the 2012 off-season so even if the lockout spoils the entire 2012-13 season there's a very good possibility we will get to see one of the greatest players between the pipes play again.

And well, Kariya - we all know how it went down for him.  There's no doubt in my mind that he would still be playing if it weren't for his unfortunate concussion issues.

#168 Eric Lindros [Gamers]
#169 Dominik Hasek [Gamers]
#170 Peter Forsberg [Gamers]
#171 Steve Yzerman [Gamers]
#172 John Vanbiesbrouck [Gamers]
#176 Mark Messier [Gamers]
#177 Jaromir Jagr [Gamers]
#179 Brendan Shanahan [Gamers]
#180 Jarome Iginla [Gamers]
#181 Mike Modano [Gamers]
#182 Teemu Selanne [Gamers]
#183 Bryan Berard [Gamers]
#186 Dainius Zubrus [Gamers]
#187 Patrick Roy [Gamers]

Another tedious laundry list of 'wants' for this subset.  Grueling.

Trevor Linden / A Day In The Life #191, #193, #194, #195
And to round out the set, surprise, another subset.  I didn't like this 'A Day In The Life' Trevor Linden subset back then and I don't like it now.  I guess the concept idea is there but I just don't enjoy hockey cards without the hockey.  Although I'm willing to guess that Brett from My Hockey Card Obsession would appreciate this subset much more than me.  I still need a few of these cards by the way:

#190 Trevor Linden [Day in the Life]
#192 Trevor Linden [Day in the Life]
#196 Trevor Linden [Day in the Life]
#197 Trevor Linden [Day in the Life]

There's also a mail-in autograph card #d/500 from this set, found one going on eBay last night for a very reasonable price.

Well that was the meat and potatoes from the box break - let's get to the...desert?  I think I did pretty good.

Sergei Berezin #66, Jaromir Jagr / Gamers #177, Trevor Linden / A Day In The Life #196
Fractal Matrix parallels - talk about spliting headaches.  These cards have either a bronze, silver or gold finish and can be either die-cut or not.   In a convoluted effort, the fractal matrix parallel concept split the 400 card set into nine different tiered levels of parallels, each with print runs that varied from as many of several thousand of some cards (mostly the Bronze cards) to less than a few hundred of other cards (In the Gold X subset). Cards were split into colors (Bronze, Gold and Silver) and axis (X, Y and Z).  Unfortunately, the designers at Leaf missed the boat and failed to create any notable markings to differentiate the X, Y and Z axis for all the cards in this set.

The Berezin card is a silver variation, Jagr 'Gamers' and the Linden 'Day In The Life' cards are gold (at least I'm pretty sure) - don't even bother to ask me which axis they each fall on.  All of these are for trade by the way as I have no use for them.  I almost wish the Jagr and Linden cards were regular base as it would have been more beneficial towards my set.  Hopefully I can swap these for a few cards that I need though.

And now for what I would undoubtedly proclaim as my biggest 'hit' from the Leaf box.

Wayne Gretzky / Banner Season #3 #d/3500
The 'Banner Season' inserts are definitely my favorite insert set from 1997-98 Leaf and pulling the best player from the set is an A+.  Was hoping to get at least maybe two of these from my box but I'll take the lone Gretzky.  These die-cut cards consists of a set of 24, each card individually numbered out of 3500 on banner-shaped canvas card stock.

Still need 21 of these 'Banner Season' inserts to complete the set as I have had Mike Grier and Steve Yzerman since I collected these cards in 1997-98.

If anyone has anything from this set, base or inserts - let me know.  Maybe we can work something out via trade.

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