Like so many others, I watched the tape-delayed broadcast of the 1980 Olympic Games’ Miracle on Ice, the U.S. men’s hockey team’s unthinkable medal-round upset win over the Soviet Union in Lake Placid, N.Y.
Like so many others, I was elated with the results. Ever since, I’ve been a collector of this moment – and I’m far from the only one.
I have the 1995 Signatures Rookies Miracle on Ice set and that’s a great place to start. You can get a base set for a fair price, but the autographs – headlined by the one of late, great coach Herb Brooks – are the real keys to this set. The Brooks autograph is currently valued at $50, as are the two cards of Mike Eruzione. Jack O’Callahan’s autos are listed at $30 apiece, Jim Craig’s at $25; the vast majority of the autographs can be had for between $12 and $15.
The 2004-05 SP Legendary Signatures boxes that guarantee one Miracle Men autograph per box will cost you about $189 each. But the autographs are plentiful on the secondary market and can be picked up for affordable prices. The autograph I had to get was the Mark Pavelich. Why?
Well after the 1980 Olympics he was basically a man who disappeared and wasn’t seen much at all over the years. He did make an appearance with his teammates at the 2002 NHL All-Star game in Los Angeles and to this day I wonder how Upper Deck got his autograph? He lives in a cabin in a remote area. There can’t be many out there.
Grandstand Sports is offering autographed 1980 replica jerseys signed by 20 members of the history-making team, including Brooks. The collectible is limited to just 180 pieces and is available for about $1,200.
Also, to help push the 2004 release of the inspirational movie “Miracle,” Disney marketing folks had a few players from the team sign some movie posters that were given away to promote the film.
Wonder whether this afternoon’s highly anticipated Team USA vs. Team Canada gold medal game will help create a whole series of new collectibles.
— Russ Cohen