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Category Archives: Hockey

Beckett Book Review: Hockey Card Stories


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

This fall, readers have once again been treated to another great selection of hockey books, but there is one that has been standing out for collectors and that is Ken Reid‘s Hockey Card Stories.

Delivering the tales behind some of the most iconic hockey cards from the 1970s and 1980s, the author takes his audience back to their youth in an entertaining way.

Reid, the co-anchor for Sportsnet Central, is no stranger to collecting as he avidly broke open packs of hockey cards as a youth. Even as a teen, he remained close to the industry as a part-time dealer alongside his brother in their native Nova Scotia. He talked with Beckett Hockey about his roots in the hobby and what inspired the book.

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Upper Deck Reveals Complete Fall Expo Plans


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

The 48th Sportcard & Memorabilia Expo is just two weeks away and Upper Deck has just revealed their elaborate plans for this semi-annual event that draws in hockey collectors from all over the world.

Recently, Beckett delivered news about the company’s tried-and-true Priority Signings promotion and these 25th Anniversary Young Guns Tribute cards share the same design as those that were found in high series packs back in 1990-91. The lineup for signers is quite impressive and the redemption program will be running all three days of the show (November 7 to 9, 2014).

What cards could collectors potentially receive and what else does Upper Deck have planned? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Leaf Announces ITG Draft Prospects Redemption


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Leaf Trading Cards has released details regarding a special redemption set targeted to collectors of 2014-15 In The Game Draft Prospects, the first product released after they began producing hockey cards under the In The Game banner.

Once a collector mails in five barcodes that can be found of the bottom of boxes, they will receive a complete set of 15 cards depicting the brightest young stars taken in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. Some of these players have already made their professional debuts, including Aaron Ekblad, Sam Reinhart and Leon Draisaitl.

“I think that it’s an interesting thing and will allow collectors, especially those who want to revisit Draft Prospects now that it’s more affordable in the marketplace, a new entry point and I think it gives them an encouraging reason to revist that product,” said Leaf’s President Brian Gray.

For a complete gallery and further information on this program, please read on after the jump. Read More »

Hot Prospect Drouin Makes NHL Debut

SPX Drouin

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

As the saying goes, good things come to those who wait, and in the case of Tampa Bay Lightning rookie Jonathan Drouin, there are a lot of good things coming his way.

The third overall selection in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, he took a longer road than expected to the pro level as he spent last season back in junior with the QMJHL’s Halifax Mooseheads and a thumb injury caused him to miss some action and have a late start this year with the AHL’s Syracuse Crunch.

Promoted on Sunday following a short but successful two-game stint in the minors which saw him score his first professional goal, he hit NHL ice for the first time last night as the Lightning surprisingly fell to the Edmonton Oilers by a score of 3-2. Drouin managed to fire one shot on net during 16:10 of playing time and is expected to be in the lineup again tonight in Calgary. Read More »

Sneak Peek: 2013-14 The Cup

ARP MacKinnon Tag

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

The highly-anticipated release of the 2013-14 edition of The Cup from Upper Deck is almost upon us and the company has been busy on social media showing off some of the pulls collectors could potentially find in tins.

While Beckett provided a First Look at the product several weeks ago, the images provided at that time were merely a tease compared to what has been revealed as of late.

Stay with us after the jump for an extensive gallery featuring autograph, memorabilia and booklet cards of some of the biggest names from the past and present. Read More »

Introducing … the game-used wallet?


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

“What’s in your wallet?” has a very different meaning now.

Thanks to Berkeley, Calif.-based Tokens & Icons, there is a whole new line of game-used memorabilia out there with the practical in mind for the sports collector with everything from stadium seats to game-used jerseys making their way into high-end everyday objects that can be used.

Or should we save them to be collected?

Either way, the creativity from the company goes far beyond the $150 Alabama Crimson Tide game-used football jersey wallet seen above — in fact, Tokens & Icons is producing items for MLB, the NHL, selected college football and basketball teams, golf, tennis, the PGA Tour, vintage arenas and even the famed horse-racing venue Churchill Downs.

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First Look: 2014-15 Upper Deck SPx Hockey

SPX Ekblad

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

One of the hobby’s flashiest sets is back again in action as preliminary details about 2014-15 SPx Hockey from Upper Deck have surfaced. For many years, this has been a huge release for many collectors as it offers up autographed memorabilia cards of the hottest rookies along with many other eye-catching hits.

This year, the new class of prospects will be appearing on Light FX Precious Metal Gems-style cards and the 60-card subset is tiered to ensure long-term interest. There will be 18 Top Prospects autos that are numbered to 249 and the remainder are Auto Jersey cards which have 30 players limited to 499 copies while the other 12 will be limited to just 249. To top it all off, there will be Blue (numbered to 50) and Green (limited to 10) parallels that will include some inscriptions.

Set to arrive in January, 2015, this product is expected to make some waves once again and you can find more information after the jump.

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Box Busters: 2014-15 Upper Deck Artifacts hockey

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Join Beckett Hockey‘s Justin Grunert and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2014-15 Upper Deck Artifacts in this edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …


Upper Deck Reveals Fall Expo Priority Signings Plans


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

The 48th Sportcard & Memorabilia Expo in Toronto is less than a month away and Upper Deck has delivered some early details regarding what collectors can expect from their popular Priority Signings program at the latest installment of the long-running show.

Since 2014-15 Upper Deck Series One will be released that weekend, hobbyists in attendance will have an opportunity to open boxes at the company’s booth and receive a special Priority Signings card that pays tribute to the Young Guns cards from their landmark 1990-91 release.

“For the semi-annual Sportcard & Memorabilia Expos we have the opportunity to say, ‘thank you’, to our most savvy collectors and also to engage some new fans,” said Upper Deck’s Senior Marketing & Social Media Manager, Chris Carlin. “The best way to do that has been to share autograph cards with them through an experience that provides the same thrill of opening a pack. Upper Deck has been running the Priority Signings autograph redemption program for years at the show and it remains a major reason for attendance. It’s not every day you can buy a box of cards for less than $100 and get a free autograph card of top NHL players and legends.” Read More »

Canada Post Issues Collectibles of Legendary Defensemen

Canada Post Defensemen

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Collecting stamps and hockey cards may seem like vastly different hobbies on some levels, but the two will occasionally intersect and create a small buzz in both markets.

This season, Canada Post has released a new series of stamps featuring a legendary defenseman from each of the Original Six clubs – Doug Harvey, Tim Horton, Harry Howell, Red Kelly, Pierre Pilote and Bobby Orr. All of these players skated during the six-team era and their accomplishments on the ice eventually took them to the Hockey Hall of Fame.

Issued on October 3, these souvenir sheets are almost the same size as conventional trading cards and prominently feature an oversized version of each stamp on the front. Due to the presence of NHL logos, it is possible that they avoided dubbing them cards for legal and licensing reasons, but hobbyists are likely to accept them in their collections.

How can you obtain these new collectibles? Find out after the jump. Read More »

First Look: Leaf In The Game Ultimate Memorabilia 14th Edition

Vezina Rare Materials

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

One of the hobby’s original premium brands, Ultimate Memorabilia was originally released at the end of the 2000-01 season and gathered a loyal following over the years due to its offering of a limited base set, desirable autographs and pieces of game-used memorabilia from the past and present.

Many collectors hoped that the product was going to carry forward following the merger between Leaf Trading Cards and In The Game and preliminary details have come to light showing that Ultimate Memorabilia 14th Edition is going in a much more limited direction than ever before.

For a gallery of pre-release images and more information on this highly-anticipated release, read on after the jump. Read More »

Upper Deck Announces Limited Rookie Cards For The Cup

 Cup MacKinnon ARP

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Each year, Upper Deck ensures that there are several limited Autographed Rookie Patch cards for collectors to track down and since the product debuted in 2005-06, the lineup has boasted such stars as Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin, John Tavares, Taylor Hall and many more.

In tins of 2013-14 The Cup, the hunt will be on for six of last season’s biggest names from the Dual Rookie Class and the Level Two cards will once again be limited to 99 copies each. The chase for these cards will be intense and command serious attention on the secondary market.

Who made the cut this season? Find out after the jump. Read More »

New Fleer Ultra Hockey Release Features Surprise Parallel Cards

UV Redemption Card

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Sometimes a redemption card can be a bit of a disappointment for a collector. After pulling one from a pack, there is often a wait associated with it and what is ultimately received might not live up to expectations.

In the case of the redemption cards for Ultra Violet parallels coming out of 2014-15 Fleer Ultra Hockey packs from Upper Deck, the cards collectors will receive will certainly be worth the temporary inconvenience. These flashy pieces of cardboard are limited to one copy each and are going to be highly coveted by player collectors.

“We made the Ultra Violet one-of-one parallels as a component of the group of high end chase cards that are available in Ultra,” said Upper Deck’s Senior Marketing and Social Media Manager Chris Carlin. “We strategically fashioned this product to highlight an array of chase cards that more often than not, are devoid of autographs and memorabilia. We offer plenty of those cards in other brands and we wanted to give Ultra a distinct profile in our hockey calendar lineup. The Ultra Violet cards help contribute to that effort.” Read More »

Upper Deck Becomes Exclusive American Hockey League Licensee


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Back in July, Upper Deck released its first product featuring players from the American Hockey League and the boxed set was the precursor to a new exclusive deal between the NHL’s top development league and its lone licensed trading card producer.

Over the years, a mind-boggling number of future stars have played at the AHL level and were able to develop their skills before making the transition to the NHL game. With a current membership of 30 teams located throughout North America, there are strong regional followings which have supported clubs for decades.

“The AHL is thrilled to be able to bring the excitement of our league to fans though AHL trading cards and collectibles,” said David Andrews, the league’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “I know Upper Deck will be a great licensee to work with both now and in the future.” Read More »

Box Busters: 2014 Upper Deck Canada Junior hockey

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Join Beckett Hockey‘s Justin Grunert and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2014 Upper Deck Canada Junior in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

First Look: 2014-15 Upper Deck SP Game-Used Hockey

SPGU Quincey

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Back in 2000-01, Upper Deck was one of the first hockey card manufacturers to embrace the concept of having a game-used memorabilia card included in every pack of a product. Their debut SP Game Used release hit store shelves that season and it was an instant smash hit.

In recent years, however, the brand has had to fight an uphill battle at times despite adding some new features and facing added competition from products offering increased ratios for pulling a memorabilia card. Critics may need to reconsider their opinion in the near future, though, as the configuration has changed dramatically and it looks to offer more variety and value in every five-card pack.

What can collectors expect to find in 2014-15 SP Game Used Hockey? Find out after the jump… Read More »

You want our rare cards? We want to see your SuperCollector submissions & your deadline is Dec. 8

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

We pulled a pretty sweet 1/1 Craig Kimbrel Relic booklet out of Triple Threads and a rare rookie parallel of Teddy Bridgewater out of Rookies & Stars (/5) and we want them to be yours.

BridgewaterTwo collectors will get their hands on them if they submit their SuperCollector stories for the upcoming annual SuperCollector showcase issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly.

Your deadline is Dec. 8.

We run SuperCollector nearly every month in the magazine, setting aside space for your stories, your photos and your information. This time, though, it’s our annual showcase issue where we highlight 15 to 20 collectors for the world to see.

Perhaps it’s because of your massive collection of Larry Bird cards — or perhaps it’s for your stash of hundreds of through-the-mail baseball autographs. Whatever it is that you collect, we want to hear about it, whether it’s baseball, football, basketball or hockey — or any other sport … or non-sports … or whatever you can imagine.

After the jump, you will find step-by-step instructions on how to enter — what to say, what to send and where.

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Box Busters: 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee hockey cards

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Join Beckett Hockey‘s Justin Grunert and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

NHL great Phil Esposito to sell collection

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Hall of Fame hockey player Phil Esposito is selling his personal collection, which includes awards, portraits and even a signed leg cast from a playoff injury.

Esposito’s collection will be sold through Legendary Auctions in November.

Esposito kept a vast collection of items through his 18-year playing career with the Chicago Blackhawks, Boston Bruins and New York Rangers.

“Through the years, I collected items that meant something to me personally,” Esposito said in a release. “They represent pieces of me and I want to leave that legacy in good hands. I wanted to be the person who decided what happened to my collection.”

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UD adds Crosby/Lemieux dual signed cards to The Cup

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Sometimes companies can’t get the cards they want in time for a product before it’s packed out. That’s why collectors end up with redemptions.

Recently, Upper Deck took a different approach. If the company had been unable to get specific cards in time, it didn’t include them in a product. That includes redemptions.

However, when UD finally did get the cards back, it included them in the product’s release. It recently happened with SP Authentic, and it did it again with The Cup.

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Box Busters: 2012-13 Score hockey cards

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Join Beckett Hockey‘s Chris Olds, Dan Hitt and Dave Sliepka as they rip into a box of 2012-13 Score from Panini America in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2012-13 O-Pee-Chee hockey cards

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Join Beckett Hockey‘s Dave Sliepka, Dan Hitt and Chris Olds as they rip into a box of 2012-13 O-Pee-Chee cards from Upper Deck in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2011-12 Ultimate Collection

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Join Beckett Hockey‘s Chris Olds, Dave Sliepka and Dan Hitt as they rip into a trio of 2011-12 Ultimate Collection boxes in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Panini shows off NHL rookie sketch cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

As the hockey world awaits for the owners and NHL Players Association to come to an agreement and avoid a lockout, a couple of hundred people have descended in Toronto for the NHLPA Rookie Showcase.

It was a great way for these groups to get their minds off a potential shortened season.

Much like football and basketball, the rookies for the upcoming season get together for the card companies. They take dozens of pictures and sign autograph cards and memorabilia for Upper Deck and Panini America, the companies with both NHL and NHLPA card licenses for 2012-13.

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With lockout looming, Kreider leads early NHL rookie class on cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Every day that passes without an agreement between the NHL owners and the NHL Players Association, it seems hockey is heading closer to a lockout.

Of course, this will effect cards. Specifically, you won’t be able to collect all those rookies you were hoping to see. There’ll be no Nail Yakupov or Ryan Murray on trading cards anytime soon if there is a lockout.

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