Category Archives: Hockey

Classic Auctions Highlights Historic Hockey Jerseys

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

The jersey worn during one of the most controversial moments in Stanley Cup history is up for bidding as Classic Auctions gives collectors an opportunity to purchase the Dallas Stars sweater worn by Brett Hull when he scored in triple overtime to give the franchise its only championship to date back in 1999 in their June 2015 event.

While Buffalo Sabres fans are still understandably bitter that the goal still counted even though the Hockey Hall of Famer’s skate was in the crease, this is but one of the incredible hockey treasures that will be finding new homes once the auction closes on June 16.

A portion of Hull’s personal collection had been auctioned off in the past, but this time, his items are joined by prominent items from the estate of former Detroit Red Wings and 1972 Team Canada defenseman Gary Bergman and several other historical items that are truly one-of-a-kind – including a Bill Barilko Toronto Maple Leafs jersey from his final season and the last sweater ever worn by the legendary Tim Horton.

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Gallery: 2014-15 Upper Deck Masterpieces

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

One week from today, a fan favorite returns to card store shelves with the release of 2014-15 Upper Deck Masterpieces. While many collectors are excited about seeing new artistic renditions of some of the biggest names from hockey’s past, present, and future.

Through its Facebook page, Upper Deck has come through with a preview of some of the big hits to be found inside packs and with every piece of memorabilia being game-used and every autograph being hard-signed, Masterpieces may once again become a hobby sensation.

What are some of the big hit that can be pulled from packs of 2014-15 Upper Deck Masterpieces? Check out the gallery after the jump. Read More »

First Look: 2014-15 Leaf Signature Series Hockey

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

The Signature Series brand was once a staple for In The Game a decade ago, but Leaf Trading Cards is now reviving it for today’s hockey hobbyists.

Releasing in late June, 2014-15 Leaf Signature Series gives collectors their last shot at Connor McDavid autographs before the young phenom heads to the NHL level. Each box will contain eight autographed cards and production is slated to be a low run of 250 12-box cases.

“We are very exited to add a signature product to the Leaf portfolio that delivers a fantastic variety of autographs from future Phenoms such as Connor McDavid to iconic legends like Gordie Howe,” noted Gregg Kohn, Director of Product Development for Leaf. “The mixture of top prospects and legendary stars signatures is sure to please hardcore hockey fans!” Read More »

First Look: 2015-16 O-Pee-Chee

 

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

For many that grew up appreciating hockey cards, there were few childhood moments more exciting than the arrival of the latest set and 2015-16 O-Pee-Chee is a great entry-level release that adult hobbyists can share with younger collectors and introduce them to the joys of collecting when it hits the shelves on September 2.

Now heading into its 10th consecutive season of being produced by Upper Deck, O-Pee-Chee has been a hobby mainstay for decades and the tradition continues with some new twists in addition to many of qualities that have long made it a favorite of collectors everywhere.

What will collectors find in packs of O-Pee-Chee this season? Find out more after the jump. Read More »

First Look: 2015-16 Upper Deck Team Canada Juniors

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

One of the biggest hits of the 2014-15 season was Upper Deck‘s debuting Team Canada Juniors product which focused on some of the best young players in the game and delivered plenty of value to collectors with a strong mix of autographs and memorabilia. The release truly began to heat up during the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship as Canada returned to glory with a long-awaited gold medal victory and several members of the squad became hot commodities within the hobby.

Due to that success, it was only natural that the set return for another season and Upper Deck appears to be adding some more concepts to the mix to ensure that it maintains its status as a collector favorite. Boasting a strong lineup of future stars like Connor McDavid, Sam Reinhart, and Max Domi, 2015-16 Upper Deck Team Canada Juniors has the potential to be an early-season smash. Those cracking boxes will get a combination of six autograph, memorabilia or printing plate hits and one of them is a patch card numbered to 199 or less.

What else can collectors expect to find in boxes? Find out after the jump. Read More »

First Look: 2014-15 In The Game Ultimate Vault

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

On the heels of a well-received Superlative Vault release, In The Game has decided to once again dig deep into its archives for another archival collection loaded up with some of the most memorable cards it produced under the guidance of Dr. Brian Price.

2014-15 In The Game Ultimate Vault draws from the first 12 editions of its innovative Ultimate Memorabilia line, which revolutionized the high-end hockey card market back in 2000-01. In the years that followed, the brand evolved as new challenges came up and on April 30, collectors will be busting packs containing stamped versions of some iconic pieces of cardboard.

What will be inside of boxes of 2014-15 In The Game Ultimate Vault? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Gaudreau Goes First In Rookie Gems Draft

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

The wait was over for 11 lucky hockey card collectors on Tuesday as Upper Deck held their Black Diamond Rookie Gems Draft for the second straight year. Redemption cards were found in packs of 2014-15 Black Diamond and each one ensured that the owner would end up getting something shiny.

Selected first overall was Calgary Flames freshman Johnny Gaudreau, who was also the overwhelming premier choice of Beckett Hockey readers that voted in a poll prior to the event. A favorite for the Calder Trophy, the young phenom tied for the lead among all NHL rookies in points during the regular season and was a major force behind his team’s return to playoff contention.

Which cards were taken in the draft? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Leaf Offers In The Game CHL Top Prospect Set

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

This weekend, the hockey world will find out which team will get the right to select first overall in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft and there is little doubt that they will pick Connor McDavid of the Erie Otters. Leaf Trading Cards is giving collectors another opportunity to put some cards of the young phenom into their collection with a special In The Game-branded set that focuses on the brightest prospects in the Canadian Hockey League.

There are 30 different cards in the 2014-15 In The Game CHL Top Prospect collection, which is broken down into three subsets – a base version, Canada’s Best, and Young Stars. Besides McDavid, the checklist features other budding stars that are eligible for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, including Dylan Strome, Mitchell Marner, Jeremy Roy, Mathew Barzal, Travis Konecny, Daniel Sprong, Lawson Crouse, Nick Merkley, and Pavel Zacha.

How can a collector obtain this set? Look for a complete gallery and ordering information after the jump. Read More »

Upper Deck Announces Spring Expo Priority Signings

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

While Upper Deck had recently announced plans for special promotional cards of Connor McDavid and Andrew Hammond along with the final installment of 25th Anniversary Retro Young Guns being offered to collectors at the 49th Sportcard & Memorabilia Expo in Toronto, hockey card enthusiasts have been patiently waiting for full information about the company’s popular Priority Signings offering at next month’s show.

In order to get in on the action, collectors need to visit a Certified Diamond Dealer at the show and purchase a box of either 2014-15 Upper Deck Series 2, 2014-15 Fleer Showcase, 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee Platinum, or 2014-15 Upper Deck ICE. They will be given a voucher to take to the company’s booth and they can break their box in front of a staff member in order to receive one of these limited signed cards.

Which players will be available in the Priority Signings program this time? Find out after the jump. Read More »

NHL Hobby Stars of the Week: Jamie Benn, Ondrej Pavelec, Mark Stone

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By Eric Norton | Beckett Hockey Analyst

It’s Tuesday, and that means we run down the three Hobby Stars of the Week and let collectors know why they should take notice of their cards. Below are the three stars of last week.

Jamie Benn, LW, Dallas Stars
Despite the Stars having been eliminated from playoff contention there was still plenty on the line for their left winger Benn as he was in race for the Art Ross Trophy. All Benn did was snatch the trophy away from John Tavares in the waning moments of the Stars final game of the season. He led the league with 10 points, including five goals, in a week that saw Benn record at least three points in each of the Stars outings. He opened the week by scoring two goals and adding a helper (2-1-3) in a 5-1 rout of the Sharks. In the Stars next game, Benn added three more assist (0-3-3) as Stars defeated the conference rivals Anaheim Ducks. Benn then closed the week with his second career hat-trick, and an assist, to clinch the Art Ross Trophy (3-1-4), against the Predators, in front of the hometown fans in Dallas. For a fifth round draft pick Benn has quietly become the best left winger in the game.That may be a little hometown bias, but the numbers are hard to argue. Since he entered the league in the 2009-10 season he has played in 426 games, scored over 150 goals, and has added over 200 assist (151-208-359). Collectors know who he is as well, especially in the Dallas market. While the asking prices for his cards are not astronomical on the secondary markets some of his high-end Rookie Cards can come with a premium.

Cards to Grab:
2009-10 The Cup #130 JSY AU RC/249, $250
2009-10 SP Authentic #223 AU RC/999, $50
2009-10 Be A Player #281 RC/99, $30

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Leaf Announces Spring Expo Redemption Plans

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Attendees of the 49th Sportcard & Memorabilia Expo in Toronto are already buzzing about junior hockey phenom Connor McDavid and Leaf Trading Cards has made him and some of his peers the focal point of their highly-anticipated redemption program, which will be held from May 1 to May 3.

With the release of 2014-15 Leaf In The Game Heroes and Prospects coming just in time for the opening day of the show, those in attendance can bust their boxes of this hits-only release and will receive a special emerald parallel card that is numbered to 10 copies or less.

What else can collectors expect to see from Leaf at the Expo? Find out more and check out the gallery after the jump. Read More »

Your Turn: Which 2014-15 NHL Rookie Will Win the Calder Trophy

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By Eric Norton | Beckett Hockey Analyst

As the 2014-15 regular season NHL campaign draws to an end, and the playoffs lie in wait, Calder Trophy contenders are making their final bids for the hardware. Past winners of the award read like a who’s who of the NHL. Names like Bobby Orr, Ken Drayden, Ray Bourque, Mario Lemieux, Peter Forsberg, Alexander Ovechkin, and Patrick Kane just to name a few. The contenders this season are first rounders, mid-rounders, and late bloomers, but they all have a case to be made for winning.

Johnny Gaudreau, LW, Calgary Flames – 2011 NHL Entry Draft (104th overall)
Through 80 games Gaudreau has 24 goals and 40 assist (24-40-64) which leads all rookies in scoring. The left winger from Calgary has absolutely set the NHL on fire (no pun intended) and may be the odds on favorite to win.

Read More »

Molson Stanley Cup ring replicas a hit with fans

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

One of the greatest treasures for many hockey collectors is a Stanley Cup ring, which are traditionally presented to players, management and team staff in recognition for bringing home the sport’s ultimate prize. They are coveted by many, but earned by few.

Now, hockey fans of legal drinking age have a chance to own a replica Stanley Cup ring of their own when they purchase specially-marked cases of Molson Canadian. Beer promotions have been extremely springtime promotions for some of Canada’s big breweries over the years and there are 20 different rings to collect bearing logos of championship teams from different eras. Each ring is also blind-bagged and comes in a special presentation box.

What teams are a part of this promotion? Find out by viewing a complete gallery after the jump. Read More »

NHL Hobby Stars of the Week: Andrew Hammond, Brayden Schenn, Nick Foligno

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By Eric Norton | Beckett Hockey Analyst

It’s Tuesday, and that means we run down the three Hobby Stars of the Week and let collectors know why they should take notice of their cards. Below are the three stars of last week.

Andrew Hammond, G, Ottawa Senators
The Senators’ push for a playoff berth was helped by the play of Hammond as he posted a 3-0-1 record, with a 1.63 goals-against average and .940 save percentage, bringing Ottawa within two points of each of the Wild Card spots in the East. In a 2-1 shootout win against the Red Wings Hammond made 16 saves to open the week. 2-1 was the score again against the Lightning as the Senators outlasted Tampa in overtime behind 28 saves from Hammond. He then made 29 saves in a 4-3 overtime win versus the Caps, and then added another 36 saves through overtime, and five more in a shootout loss, to the Maple Leafs on the back-end of a back-to-back. Hammond was used earlier this season on this list just as he started his NHL career. As much as I have wanted to place him on the list several times since, I just simply could not as he only has a handful of cards. Thankfully with the release of Fleer Showcase and Upper Deck AHL there are a few more offerings to be found. If the Sens make the Playoffs it will be largely on the back of the of Hamburglar then who knows what the asking price for cards would be then. Invest now if you have not already.

Cards to Grab:
2014-15 Fleer Showcase #102 Anton Forsberg RC/Troy Grosenick RC, $40
2014-15 Fleer Showcase Red Glow #102 Anton Forsberg RC/Troy Grosenick RC, $60
2014-15 Upper Deck AHL Autographs #100, n/a

Read More »

Gallery: 2014-15 Upper Deck ICE

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

One of the most-loved hockey card brands is back again as a stand-alone release once again this season and 2014-15 Upper Deck ICE reaches store shelves on April 15.

Earlier today, Upper Deck provided collectors with an extensive look at some of the big hits that will be found inside, including the returning UD Black content that are seeded once in every box.  There are also five different tiers of serial-numbered Ice Premieres rookie cards limited to as little as 99 copies each for big names like Johnny Gaudreau, Aaron Ekblad and Jonathan Drouin.

Read on after the jump to view an extensive gallery of cards that can be pulled from packs of 2014-15 Upper Deck ICE. Read More »

Upper Deck Creates Hammond Spring Expo Promo

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Last week, Upper Deck announced some of their preliminary plans for the upcoming 49th Sportcard & Memorabilia Expo, and their schedule of activities has been bolstered by the presence of an additional special promotional card featuring Andrew Hammond, who is one of the hottest goaltenders during the second half of the 2014-15 season.

While the previously-revealed special promo card of Connor McDavid in his Team Canada gear is expected to be a hot commodity, the option will be there to select the Hammond card instead. The Ottawa Senators netminder was just named one of the NHL’s Three Stars of the Week after going 3-0-1 to keep his club in the playoff picture with just a few games left in the schedule.

How can a collector receive one of these cards at the Expo? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Hall of Famer Joe Mullen Added To Expo Lineup

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

A.J. Sports World recently revealed that Joe Mullen will be signing at the 49th Sportcard & Memorabilia Expo in Toronto on May 3, 2015 and it is a rare Canadian appearance for the Hockey Hall of Fame member.

Over the course of his career, Mullen proved to be one of the greatest American-born talents the game has ever seen and he retired at the end of the 1996-97 campaign with over 500 goals and 1,000 points. Greatly underrated, he was also a part of three Stanley Cup championship squads and won the Lady Byng Trophy twice during his time with the Calgary Flames.

Mullen’s autograph will set show attendees back $35 for regular items and premium items will be signed at a rate of $50. Personalizations are included for free, but inscriptions are an additional $20.

Check out some neat trivia about Mullen’s rookie card after the jump. Read More »

Sam Bennett Ready For NHL Debut

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Early 2015-16 hockey card releases from Upper Deck will have another big rookie card to chase as it has been announced that Sam Bennett will be joining the Calgary Flames lineup for the rest of the season instead of being sent to their AHL affiliate in Adirondack.

The fourth overall pick in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft, Bennett was initially on track to make his pro debut early in the 2014-15 campaign before shoulder surgery put him on the injured list for five months. Back in February, he returned to action with the OHL’s Kingston Frontenacs and recorded 24 points over 11 games before his team was swept in a first round playoff battle with the North Bay Battalion.

How many different cards of Bennett have been released to date? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Upper Deck Reveals OPC Platinum Variations

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 By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Collectors break packs of 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee Platinum has potentially noticed that variations for the base set have begun to pop up and Upper Deck has confirmed that 50 different cards have different photos or different players entirely.

Seeded once in every 160 hockey packs or coming once in every 320 blaster or retail packs, the chase is bound to be an exciting and challenging one for O-Pee-Chee completists and player collectors. As an added bonus, there are autographed versions of some of these cards and they are hard-signed.

How can you tell if you have pulled one of these variations? Look for a gallery and checklist after the jump. Read More »

Hobby Q&A: Crosby Collector Carlos Pinheiro

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By Eric Norton | Beckett Hockey Analyst

A couple of weeks ago, we had Sidney Crosby on listed as the second star in the NHL Hobby Stars of the Week because he was tied for second in points with Blue Jackets winger Scott Hartnell. That piece caught the eye of Beckett reader Carlos Pinheiro from Quispamsis, New Brunskick, Canada, who shared a picture of his Crosby collection which piqued our interest and we wanted to dig a little deeper. Turns out Pinheiro was featured in a small piece in the October 2013 issue of Beckett Hockey in the Readers Write section. We caught up with Pinheiro and what resulted was an eye-popping collection of Crosby and some other huge names.

newBH-2013Q: How long have you been collecting?

A: I have been collecting hockey cards for 38 years now and have heard many stories from collectors on how their parents threw out their cards when they were a kid. As for me, I was very fortunate to have saved all my cards from when I was young. The hockey card collecting started on the front porch of my best friend’s house. He would bring out a bag of hockey cards and we always sorted through them. I was instantly hooked and was determined to start a collection of my own.

Q: Of all the rookies in the class of 2005-06 what piqued your interest in Crosby?

A: Wayne Gretzky spoke highly of Crosby saying that if there is anyone who could possibly break any of his NHL records, it would be Crosby. I knew he was special, and for me as a collector, had to have his Rookie Card. When Upper Deck Series One came out I purchased a few hobby boxes and pulled two Crosby Young Guns. I was ecstatic. It was the beginning of my Crosby PC.

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Upper Deck Offers Connor McDavid Expo Redemption

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

The 49th Sportcard & Memorabilia Expo is just one month away, but Upper Deck has been busy solidifying their plans for the world’s biggest trade show dedicated to hockey cards and collectibles.

As part of the festivities, collectors breaking a box of certain Upper Deck releases they have purchased at the show may bring their sealed box and the voucher they receive from a Certified Diamond Dealer in order to receive a limited edition Memorable Moments promotional card of junior sensation Connor McDavid in his national team jersey. Available only on Saturday, May 2 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m., this could become a hit on the secondary market as the young star’s cards have been on fire all season.

The eligible products for the McDavid card are 2014-15 Upper Deck Series Two, 2014-15 Fleer Showcase, 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee Platinum, 2014-15 Upper Deck ICE, and 2014-15 Upper Deck Masterpieces.

What else did Upper Deck reveal about their plans for the Expo? Find out after the jump. Read More »

NHL Hobby Stars of the Week: Devan Dubnyk, Cam Atkinson, Ryan O’Reilly

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By Eric Norton | Beckett Hockey Analyst

It’s Tuesday, and that means we run down the three Hobby Stars of the Week and let collectors know why they should take notice of their cards. Below are the three stars of last week.

Devan Dubnyk, G, Minnesota Wild
Minnesota’s journeymen goalie has been playing like anything but as of late. In fact last week Dubnyk looked more like a perennial all-star as the Wild went 4-0-0 behind his 1.22 goals against average and .962 save percentage. Dubnyk made 35 saves to open the week against the Maple Leafs helping the Wild to a 2-1 win in Toronto. The Wild then posted another 2-1 win the next night on Long Island as they outlasted the Isles in a shootout. It was then back home to Minnesota where Dubnyk stopped 23 shots against the Flames in a 4-2 victory then stopped 31 shots in 4-1 win over the Kings on back-to-back nights. This is Dubnyk’s second time making the Hobby Stars list this season and for good reason to. Minnesota is holding on to a wild-card spot in the West as the regular season winds down much to the credit of Dubnyk net minding. He’s still affordable on the secondary markets as well, so picking up a mid-end card or two isn’t out of the question.

Cards to Grab:
2013-14 Upper Deck Team Canada Autographs #63, $30
2012-13 Limited Materials Signatures #LJDD /25, $25
2013-14 Panini Playbook Split Decisions Jersey Prime #SDDDU /25, $40

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Hot Rookie Hammond Heads Upper Deck Update Checklist

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

While many collectors are aware that Upper Deck was planning to update its flagship set with a special insert placed into packs of their upcoming 2014-15 SP Authentic Hockey release, there has been a great deal of speculation and discussion in regard to who would end up making it into this extra group of cards.

One name that came up most frequently was that of Ottawa Senators goaltender Andrew Hammond, who has only appeared in a few sets thus far this season. He missed the cut for having a Young Guns card earlier this year and as he went undefeated over the course of his first 14 starts, he became a hobby sensation. He is one of 10 supplemental Young Guns cards that will hit store shelves in a few weeks and while he did not end up setting a record for longest unbeaten streak from the start of his NHL career, this card is bound to be a popular one.

Who else made it into the set? Look for a complete checklist of 2014-15 Upper Deck Update cards and additional images after the jump. Read More »

Quad Rookie Gems Draft To Be Held On April 9

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Last season saw the debut of some of the most eye-catching hockey cards ever made as Upper Deck debuted their Quad Rookie Gems cards featuring a solid cast of freshmen and they are back once again in 2014-15.

Collectors and dealers that attended the recent 2015 Industry Summit got an in-person look at all of the cards, which contain four genuine one carat diamonds. With just 25 different redemption cards seeded into packs of 2014-15 Black Diamond, those lucky enough to pull one and redeem it by April 9 will have an equal shot at having the first overall pick in the special draft event. As of last week, only 10 of the 25 entries had been redeemed.

Please be sure to vote in a special poll and check out a partial gallery of 2014-15 Upper Deck Black Diamond Quad Rookie Gems cards after the jump. Read More »

Liam Fitzgerald Receives Upper Deck Card

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Sometimes there’s more to life than hockey cards or even the game itself, yet there are occasions when the things that are truly important intersect with the hobby and create positive feelings for everyone involved.

A perfect case of this recently took place when the team at Upper Deck paid tribute to one of the sport’s greatest fans, Liam Fitzgerald. For those of you that are unfamiliar with his story, he was the star of a viral video where he fist-bumped several members of the Boston Bruins and his story should serve as an inspiration for all of us.

Just eight years old, he was born with Down Syndrome and has already defeated cancer after being diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in December, 2009. For nearly three-and-a half years, he endured tremendous adversity and finally “kicked cancer’s butt” with his final chemotherapy treatment in May, 2013. Soon after, his family began a fundraising campaign to “Bump Out Cancer” and earlier this season, the hockey world took notice of this incredible young man. Read More »

First Look: 2015-16 Upper Deck MVP

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

The 2014-15 regular schedule has just a few games left, but hockey card enthusiasts are already getting a glimpse of next season’s first offering as details have come to light on 2015-16 Upper Deck MVP.

Last year, the long-established brand returned as a stand-alone product and it is back again with some of the features that made it a summertime hit. Expected to reach store shelves on August 5, it will be the first place that collectors will be able to find a redemption card (seeded 1:960 packs) depicting the top pick in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft – who many expect to be Connor McDavid of the OHL’s Erie Otters. There will also be an autographed version (1:10,250) that may prove to be one of the most desired pieces of cardboard on the market before the puck drops again in October.

What else will be found in packs of 2015-16 Upper Deck MVP? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Gallery: 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee Platinum

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Earlier today, Upper Deck revealed several quality control images for their upcoming 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee Platinum release via their Facebook page and collectors caught an early glimpse at some big cards from the hotly-anticipated product that releases next week.

Loaded up with tons of parallels and plenty of hard-signed autographs, O-Pee-Chee Platinum makes its debut this year and will hit store shelves on April 1. Every pack is expected to deliver one hit on average and a box will contain at least one die-cut chase card and one Rookie Autograph.

Read on after the jump for a gallery of cards that can be found in this release. Read More »

NHL Hobby Stars of the Week: Ondrej Pavelec, Kyle Turris, Ben Bishop

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By Eric Norton | Beckett Hockey Analyst

(Please note that moving forward the NHL Hobby Stars weekly post will be moved to Tuesday’s).

It’s Wednesday, and that means we run down the three Hobby Stars of the Week and let collectors know why they should examine their cards.

Ondrej Pavelec, G, Winnipeg Jets
Pavelec, apparently the NHL’s biggest Bruce Springsteen fan, was 3-0-0 last week with a 0.97 goals against average, and a save percentage of .970 as he helped the Jets cling to the final playoff spot in the West. Pavelec and the Jets played host to San Jose to open the week defeating the Sharks 5-2 behind the net minding skills of Pavelec who made 38 saves. The Blues then came calling but Pavelec denied them entry as he turned away 32 of the shots he faced as the Jets won 2-1 in shootout. The Jets closed the week hosting the Caps as Pavelec recorded his second shutout this season winning the game 3-0. This season he has spilt time with rookie standout Michael Hutchinson in net but at the playoffs approach the veteran will play a key role in the Jets success. If he continues his solid goaltending then the results could be seen on the secondary market as well. Pavelec only has 13 Rookie Cards listed in the Beckett database all of which are affordable at present time but a strong push in the post season could see those prices rise.

Oh, he also really seems to like “The Boss”, I mean just check out that mask.

Read More »

Unannounced Cards In Upper Deck Series 2

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Collectors breaking boxes of 2014-15 Upper Deck Series 2 may have noticed that they have found some cards that were not officially listed on any checklists or sales materials and the company has confirmed the existence of these tough pulls.

One of the most important of all of these unannounced inserts is the Jean Beliveau Tribute card, which looks back on the career of one of the game’s greatest players. What some collectors may not realize, however, is that Upper Deck also issued a special Jean Beliveau Tribute Autograph that is limited to just 10 copies.

What other special content can be found in packs of 2014-15 Upper Deck Series 2? Find out after the jump. Read More »

NHL hobby stars of the week: Scott Hartnell, Sidney Crosby, Henrik Zetterberg

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By Eric Norton | Beckett Hockey Analyst

It’s Wednesday, and that means we run down the three Hobby Stars of the Week and let collectors know why they should examine their cards.

Scott Hartnell, LW, Columbus Blue Jackets
Hartnell paced the league as he netted five goals (5-0-5) last week as he and the Blue Jackets picked up wins in three of their four games. He opened the week with his fifth multi-goal effort this season as he scored twice (2-0-2) in a shootout win over the Hurricanes. The Blue Jackets then traveled to Detroit where Hartnell scratched out his first game-winning goal of the season (1-0-1) in a 3-1 victory over the Red Wings. Back home against the Oilers, Hartnell reached the 20-goal mark on the season (1-0-1) as Columbus earned its third win in a row coming by way of a 5-4 shootout. The week came to a close as Hartnell added the tying goal (1-0-1) in an eventual loss to the Hurricanes on home ice. Hartnell made his debut in the 2000-01 campaign and has been a solid NHLer ever since. Collectors should note that of his 900 cards in the Beckett database he has just 69 autographs which seems low for someone who has been in the league for 14 seasons. The good news is that for a veteran of his caliber he is affordable on the secondary market and will not break the bank if you would like to start collecting his cards now.

Cards to Grab:
2000-01 Upper Deck #226 YG RC, $20
2000-01 BAP Signature Series Autographs #237, $20
2012-13 The Cup Limited Logos Autographs #LLHT JSY/50, $50

Read More »

First Look: 2014-15 In The Game Superlative Vault

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Hockey card collectors are about to get another chance to own some of the most coveted cards produced over the past few years as In The Game will be offering them a special release that draws from the archives of one of the most popular brands it produced before merging with Leaf Trading Cards last year.

Superlative Vault is expected to be delivered to card stores on March 26 and it caps off the brand’s original era before Leaf produces their own version for the first time later this year. Back in 2007-08, Superlative turned some heads with its debut and gathered a strong following due to its mix of autographs and limited game-used memorabilia cards from today’s stars, hot prospects and respected legends.

What can be expected in 2014-15 In The Game Superlative Vault? Look for a gallery after the jump. Read More »

Sunday Conversation: Leaf’s Gregg Kohn

Kohn

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Hobby veteran Gregg Kohn is the Director of Product Development for Leaf Trading Cards and Beckett Hockey recently caught up with him to discuss some of the upcoming changes collectors can expect to see in 2014-15 In The Game Heroes & Prospects in addition to some of the other hockey card products the company has planned for release in the near future.

Leaf recently released details about their first edition of In The Game’s long-running Heroes & Prospects brand. Many collectors and dealers appear to be quite shocked by the change in configuration from a traditional wax release to a hits-only box. Could you explain the reasons behind this radical departure from the established format?

Change is always difficult to embrace but sometimes necessary. The market has changed since the inception of the brand and it needed to be reconfigured to fit within the current market. We drastically lowered production of the product, which will help keep shelf life stronger and keep the product strong. The addition of Between The Pipes inserts helps bring a more balanced “Heroes” aspect to the equation as does adding more legends autographs and Legends Complete Jersey cards, which we have done. Our goal is never to upset the loyal In The Game collector base, but the truth is, the brand needed a jump start and we feel these changes can do that, or else the brand may not have existed at all. Now, that doesn’t mean we won’t go back to a configuration people are more accustomed to seeing in the future. This year with five signatures and four memorabilia cards, new and previously popular themes, and a heavier dose of legends will jump start the brand. The designs have been updated and the checklist strengthened.

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Saying Goodbye To The Belleville Bulls

Subban

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor | Commentary

Seeing a hockey team leave a city is never easy for its fans. Whether it was one on the cusp of big things or performing poorly on the ice, there are always economic realities which are usually the root cause for taking them away.

Over the years, it has happened countless times from the lowest levels of the game to the NHL itself and for communities that have thrown emotional and financial support behind a club, the moves are devastating. Need proof? Ask a fan of the Hartford Whalers, Quebec Nordiques or the original Winnipeg Jets.

Yesterday, it was announced that the Ontario Hockey League’s Belleville Bulls were on the move and a small city of around 50,000 folks lost one of the few things that mattered to local hockey fans. I have been one of those fans for as long as I can remember and the news has stung deeply. Read More »

Tarasenko Signs For Earlier Upper Deck Releases

Tarasenko

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

The wait is over for collectors that have redeemed or held on to several different Vladimir Tarasenko autograph cards produced by Upper Deck last season.

As announced via company’s blog yesterday, the St. Louis Blues sniper finally sat down for a signing session and those that have sent in redemption codes from 2013-14 products such as Trilogy, SPx and Artifacts will finally see their hotly-anticipated cards arriving in the mail.

“Our Athlete Relations team worked very hard to make some headway to get signing sessions with Vladimir and we are happy to report the first one is now in the books,” Upper Deck noted in their post. “We will have a variety of autograph exchange cards from his rookie season heading out to collectors in the coming weeks. We are pushing for more signing sessions to finish up everything we have outstanding with Vladimir and are optimistic that will happen in the near future. We appreciate fan’s patience while we work to get these cards out and get more signed.” Read More »

NHL Hobby Stars of the Week: Jiri Hudler, Gabriel Landeskog, Cam Talbot

JH

By Eric Norton | Beckett Hockey Analyst

It’s Wednesday, and that means we run down the three Hobby Stars of the Week and let collectors know why they should examine their cards.

Jiri Hudler, C, Calgary Flames
Hudler set the NHL on fire last week as he led the league with eight points. The Flames week opened against the Flyers in a game that saw Hudler dish out an assist and net the game-winning goal (1-1-2) in overtime as Calgary outlasted Philly 3-2. Hudler had another goal and assist (1-1-2) against the Bruins as Flames won in a 4-3 shootout. The next night against his former teammates in Detroit, Hudler scored twice (2-0-0) helping Calgary to a 5-2 win, and then closed the week with two assists (0-2-2) in Ottawa where the Flames fell 5-4 in a shootout loss. If you don’t know who Hudler is, it’s probably because you don’t live in Calgary. He has quietly put together back-to-back 50-point seasons and is still going strong.  According to the Beckett database, he has 345 cards to be found, but only 35 Rookie Cards and just 23 autographs. As the Playoffs approach, Calgary is holding onto the eighth spot in the West, but the Kings are right on their heels. Stellar play from Hudler can help stave off L.A. and also drive his price on the secondary market as well.

Cards to Grab:
2003-04 Upper Deck #203 YG RC, $10
2003-04 Upper Deck Rookie Update #152 JSY RC/ Stever Yzerman JSY/999, $25
2003-04 UD Premier Collection #115 Patch Au RC/99, $250

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