Thursday, October 29, 2009


This week's Linden card is not a single card, but a multiple card mailpost.

For a number of years now, I have had the great pleasure of meeting and trading with a number of die-hard Linden collectors. If it were not for these fellow card-hounds, I would definitely not have as diverse a collection.

I recently made a purchase from one of these collectors (who probably has THE Trevor Linden collection). It consisted of only five cards, but those five are ones that I didn't think would ever find their way into my collection.

I consider this purchase to be one of the single most important transactions in my collection.

So without further ado....

2006/07 Upper Deck Signature Sensations

This card is probably my favorite in the lot. It's such a simple design and I really like the colors, layout and the way the autograph just punches out of the card. If only it were a little better photo (Trevor looks a little "out of it").

2003/04 Upper Deck Beehive Gold /15

To find a card numbered out of 15 is tough enough, but to find one that has been around for 6 years - near impossible.

2005/06 Be A Player SP Signatures Gold /10

A card out of 15 is tough, a card out of 10 is even tougher. And it's signed! A gorgeous addition to the collection.

2005/06 Artifacts Auto-Facts Pewter /10

Second verse - same as the first! Knowing that some of these were in set collections, there are even fewer than 10 that were available. A definite needle in a haystack.

2001/02 Upper Deck Mask Collection Jersey/Patch /100

This card is another favorite. The old school Canucks colors are in full gear. Three colors and great stitching. Gorgeous! There are 100 copies of the card, but I've seen maybe one or two surface over the past couple years...and they can go for big bucks.

Needless to say, I am absolutely thrilled to have landed 5 amazing cards. Any one of these would have been a huge addition to the collection, but to get this many all at once - clearly one of the best maildays of my Linden collecting career.

It's gonna be tough to top this.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Sunday November 1st will be the 50th anniversary of Jacques Plante donning the mask and forever revolutionizing the game of hockey.

That day, I will be posting a special look at the mask and its importance to the sport.

Currently, there are numerous news stories and features on not just Jacques Plante, but goalies through the years right up to today. I urge you all to take a moment and enjoy those articles. I personally find them extremely interesting (i've always said, hockey players make the greatest storytellers) and a source of inspiration for my collecting and custom card designing.

If you come across one you find exceptionally good, drop me a line and let me know.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

ONE SHEET, ONE SET - 1997/98 Score

Time to dip into the binder that is slowly getting thicker with each additional "set" completion.

This week, I'm taking a look at another set that comes from the overproduced era that was the mid-90's. After putting the cards in the sheet, I was really drawn to the display.

1997/98 Score

The first thing you might think upon seeing these cards are "what league are these guys playing in"? There is some funky jersey action going on. The NHL was really pushing the "third jersey" look. Some retro, some new, some ugly. A definite sign of the times and although I shake my head at it, I do appreciate the capturing of a time period.

The photos are a wide range of action shots, crazy angles and closeups. I will give points out for the attempt at a unique and exciting photo selection. Take a look at the cards I selected. I think each one, say for the Mogilny, is a pretty good photo for a hockey card. That Canucks jersey alone is worthy of inclusion.

The front of the card utilizes a fairly simple design (considering the crazy photoshop creations some card designs had at the time).

A simple photo box for easy insertion of pictures, the team nickname at the bottom and the player name along one of the sides. The Score logo is at the top (and is really not a very good logo - definitely shows its age). The text font styles, although 3 different, do work together. The cheesy spraypainted look for the last name actually doesn't look too bad to this collector.

What does bother me is the quality of some of the photographs. A lot of them come off as blurry and grainy - a definite downside as I am a sucker for a quality photo. It's too bad because there could have been some gems in there.

The back of the card continues the theme set forth on the front. The text fonts, the header backgrounds and the spraypainted look are all here.

While there is a good amount of information, I find the back of the card a little messy. The additional Home, Away and Playoff stats to me are unnecessary and a sleeker design could have been made with this stuff outta here.

And what's with the collection of logos in the bottom right corner? Can you say overkill?

Ultimately, this set has a lot of high hopes and connects on occasion, but the misses are just too much to overlook.

The nice thing is that this is a real inexpensive set should you choose to pursue it. It's a simple 270 cards and could probably be found in a $5 bin somewhere.

2 masks out of 5

Monday, October 26, 2009


Here's the next batch of custom made cards.

Hope you enjoy.

Year In Cards - oct25a

Year In Cards - oct19a

Year In Cards - oct20b

Year In Cards - oct20a

Year In Cards - oct21b

Year In Cards - oct21a

Year In Cards - oct22b

Year In Cards - oct22a

Year In Cards - oct23b

Year In Cards - oct23a

Year In Cards - oct24b

Year In Cards - oct24a

Year In Cards - oct25b

Year In Cards - oct25a

Friday, October 23, 2009


Well, it only took a couple weeks to rebound. At this pace, I should have the pool won by Christmas.

It seems my Brian Burke scare tactics worked.

Thursday, October 22, 2009


For years now, I have been enamored by goalie masks. From the crude fibreglass protective masks of the 60's and 70's to the intricate pieces of art today, I find the mask a very unique and interesting piece of sports history.

One of my goals with this blog is to further appreciate goalie masks. From the design standpoint as well as the historical standpoint. I think there are many stories of interest from the goalies and their masks.

When I was a kid growing up in the 80's, hockey cards never had closeups of masks on them. Goalies like Mike Liut, Michel Dion and Murray Bannerman had these gorgeous masks, but you'd be lucky to even get a card with them wearing a mask.

Today, goalie mask cards are much more common. To me, there will never be a shortage. I think they are some of the nicest cards out there. My one comment would be that I'd like to see more of the old vintage masks as opposed to the new guys.

Today's masks are incredible pieces of art. Often, they are so detailed, that seeing them from afar (in the stands during a game) makes the mask less impressive. I like being able to take a nice close look at the mask and really get an idea of what the theme is to it.

There have recently been books published on the history of masks and the subject tends to find it's way into discussions and news as they still remain a relevant topic.

In the next week or so, the 50th anniversary of the first mask worn on a regular basis in the NHL will be here. Jacques Plante was the innovator who introduced us to the piece of protective equipment. I'm sure there are many goalies today who are thankful for that.

After reading this post, take a moment to go back and really look at the masks in these cards. This is just a small sampling of the mask cards that I have and I will do my best to share more with you.

Do you have a favorite mask or mask card? If so, I'd like to hear about it.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by and check out my blog. Although it's in its early stages, I am having a really good time putting it together.

LINDEN CARD OF THE WEEK - 2007/08 UD Artifacts Tundra Tandems Patches /35

This week's Trevor Linden card is one of my favorite patch cards. I own a few patch cards of his, but this one would be the nicest and most "busy".

2007/08 UD Articacts Tundra Tandems Patches /35
(with Brendan Morrison)

When I started collecting Trevor Linden cards back in the 90's, jersey cards were just being introduced into the card collecting world. I thought they were the coolest looking cards....but boy were they expensive.

Part of me was hoping Trevor wouldn't have any memorabilia cards - it would break the bank.

It took about 4-5 seasons before Linden finally got a jersey card. Sure enough, it was going for around $125. For what now would be considered as "a plain old lousy white jersey card". It took me a few years before I tracked one down for a price I was willing to pay (I think I got it for about $40). With that started the journey into game-used memorabilia.

Nowadays, jersey cards are so readily available that I've started seeing them in the dollar bin. Thank you oversaturation of the market.

Enter patch cards. Pieces of the emblem, crest, nameplate, number, what-have-you. Hello skyrocketing prices. Again, I dreaded the quest for Linden patch cards.

I do have a few of those as well (and they tend to be my favorites in my collection), but I don't pull the trigger on those nearly as fast as other cards. The prices are still crazy. (couple that with a few diehard Linden collectors and it can become a pricey endeavour.

The patch on this Linden card looks awesome. I have no clue what part of the crest it comes from...but it sure beats the boring single color patches I've seen on other cards.

And thick! This card is nice and fat...and the patch bulges out a bit too. The scan really doesn't do the card justice.

I have seen (or have had in my posession) about a dozen or so cards out of the 35 made, and I can say hands down that this card is the nicest.

Oh, and Brendan Morrison is on the card too. Yay.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

1 vs. 100 - Exciting Possibility

Well, On my quest to complete my 1 vs. 100, I have mentioned it to a couple of collectors I have traded with in the past.

One of them, who actually gave me the idea of the "One Sheet, One Set" has a large amount of numbered cards.

I was very excited when he returned my e-mail today and mentioned that he has 13 cards that would fit the criteria.

I am currently negotiating a trade and am hopeful I will soon be the recipient of a bunch of numbered parallels.

That would put me at over 25%...and I still haven't really put the word out yet nor have I done a single ebay search.

Good progress.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

ONE SHEET, ONE SET - 1998/99 OPC Chrome

This week's set was one that was a bit of a "love-hate" set for me. (the Scott Gomez RC in this set was going for crazy prices back in the day and still has a higher value placed on it than I thought it would).

1998/99 OPC Chrome (Main Set)

On first look, this set is really appealing. It is a parallel set to the OPC set released. This set has a chrome look to them and the card stock is thicker and feels kind of plastic-like.

It's a 242 card set with 220 main cards and the rest are draft pick cards and CHL All-Star cards.

The front of the card is a full body player shot and for the most part, the photo and player selection is neither good nor bad. Pretty "middle of the road". The top and side of the card is diffused a bit to offer a little bit of a border. It's a nice touch - when the photo really makes it punch (like the Brett Hull or Keith Primeau) as opposed to just "being there" (like the John Vanbiesbrouck).

Top corner logo (and you'll note how many player photos don't match the team logo...still a problem with today's releases. You'd think with all the technology that they could update things faster). The brown/beige outer border is again ok, but for some reason just doesn't appeal to me. The "chrome" look could have been better - if that's what they were trying to pull off.

The name is vertical along the side and is often hard to read due to the photo in the background. I don't recall this being as bad in the non-chrome series.

The back of the card actually looks pretty good. A nice layout with a spot for a second photo. Yet they still get a bunch of stats on the card. Just a side note. I tend to prefer when a card has a different photo on the reverse side rather than using the same photo on both sides.

The name font styles are AGAIN ok. Nothing really sticks out as ugly and the sizes in proportion to everthing works for me.

Overall, guess what, it's OK! Not a must have, but a nice set to go after. This one I think will fluctuate a little more in price if you're looking to build the set. A "smart shopper" though will find it a good value.


2.5 masks out of 5

Monday, October 19, 2009


Twice in the last week, I have come across online auctions selling custom made cards. I must say, it bothered me quite a bit.

I have been dabbling in custom cards for a few years now, designing card styles from scratch, mocking up some retro looking cards and even (on occasion) tending to a request or two.

Never once has the thought of selling my custom cards on ebay even crossed my mind.

I have seen cards trimmed with an edger, I've seen full out customs with clearly unauthorized photos, I've seen blatant rip-offs of current card designs and I've seen jersey and patch insertion and/or replacement.

Most times, the sellers "cover their butts" by indicating that the card is a custom and for entertainment purposes only.

I call bullcrap on that one. Clearly if sellers are putting comments like this in their auction, they know full well the copyright issues they are ignoring.

I bet that if the big boys caught wind of these guys' tactics, they'd have a harsh word or two for them. But I guess as the old saying goes - It's easier to beg for forgiveness than ask for permission.

I'm all for showing off you design, heck - I'm even for making a buck or two on them, but do it legally. To put your work out there for millions to see - and blatantly rub the consumer's nose in it, makes me shake my head.

It's no different than if they were to put together a mix cd of their favorite songs, slap a label on it and try and advertise it as a unique "one of a kind" item.

Give me a break. Stop peddling your "goods" and stop giving custom card makers a bad name.

Just my opinion.


Another week, another batch of cards!

Again, it's tough just picking one game - one photo to represent a night of action (especially when there's a dozen or more games on).

Still, I'm having a ton of fun putting these together and I hope you are enjoying them too.

Year In Cards - Oct 12b

Year In Cards - Oct 12a

Year In Cards - Oct 13b

Year In Cards - Oct 13a

Year In Cards - Oct 14b

Year In Cards - Oct 14a

Year In Cards - Oct 15b

Year In Cards - Oct 15a

Year In Cards - Oct 16b

Year In Cards - Oct 16a

Year In Cards - Oct 17b

Year In Cards - Oct 17a