Something that hasn't happened to me in a couple years, but did occur a few times when Trevor Linden had a few more cards in the loop.
Seeing people hold cards hostage.
To me, getting a card to add to my personal collection is quite a thrill. But searching out and finding said card...now that's what gives me the most excitement in this hobby.
There have been times though when I have come across a store or a seller who has a bit of a rare Linden card and knows it. I gotta say, it has bothered me to know that the price of the card inflates simply due to the fact that there is interest in the card. Not by hundreds or even dozens of people, but by one or two of us Linden collectors. Budging on the price? No chance. Working out a trade? Out of the question. Engaging in conversation looking for a way not to pay triple book value on a card that should go for a fraction of the price? Now you're just insulting the guy.
I have had to bite my tongue on more than one occasion. It bugged me - a lot. I vividly remember finding a copy of Linden's first jersey card. At the time it was booking for about $100. Any other card from that set could be found for $20-$40. But the guy with the Linden wanted $175. Simply because he knew that I really wanted the card. For months I had to just sit there and hope he would one day lower the price. Even when the book value of the set was coming down, he kept that card up there.
Eventually, I just gave up on it. Years later, I finally found a copy of it on ebay. I picked it up for less than $50. Ha!
While I understand that this hobby is not necessarily a 'team sport' (I don't expect everyone to find, hold and sell me cards at a discounted rate...heck, I don't expect anyone to do that....there are just some who do - and it's very much appreciated), I think that collecting and trading cards should be fair.
Not everyone agrees I guess. I have no doubt that the greed in some people will continue to maintain an environment where cards are held hostage.
I think the bulk of collectors realize this and are now waiting it out. That's what will eventually end the undesirable trend.
It's all a numbers game.
1985-86 Topps Hockey Sell Sheet
9 minutes ago