Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Strike A Pose

The quick baseball post season thought...a shame the Jays couldn't win that game 1 - going to be hard to come back in this one!

How can you look at this and say that the gold border doesn't improve these cards?

Another solid pack of additions including Shannahan who absolutely deserves to be considered on of the Greats.

We end with a couple dupes, but that Legace pose is just amazing. Curious, if you zoom out and take away the extra's almost centrefold like! Not to dwell on dupes, but I mean, I could see a good calendar come out of the NHL with goalie centrefold poses like this - just think of the money!

27 Packs, 270 Cards, 913 Points.

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

A Prong(er)

 As we start getting into the last third or so of the packs, I'm going to revise and think that my base set will likely get to about 70% or so when all is said and done. Only time will tell, but that's not bad sfor a single box on a 453 card set, if it gets there.

This pack definitely helps positively as it's another perfect 10 of cards needed.

A solid defensive "Great" for the Mr. Hockey's Greats cards today in Chris Pronger. Chris had to wait until he started with Anaheim in order to get his hands on a Stanley Cup ring. Chris started with Hartford, but started coming into his own once he moved on to St. Louis. After missing most of 2002-03 due to injuries, and then the strike in 2004, he got a new start after a season in Edmonton when he ended up in Anaheim.

He found his stride again in the few years there and ended up in Philly for three more season, though he petered out the last couple and called it a career after 18 years.

26 Packs, 260 Cards, 887 Points.

Monday, September 28, 2020

A Repeat Visit

With the baseball season winding down, and the Jays into the playoffs, it has been a short and unusual year, but a decent one on the field for the Jays. A little slide and losing streak that had me worried near the end, but they turned it around to clinch a playoff spot - now to see how they can handle in the playoffs themselves.


Well, we saw the base card yesterday, guess we should focus on the man a bit more.

I was never a big Luongo fan. For Vancouver, he was always really solid but never seemed to be able to reach that premiere echelon to take Vancouver where they needed to go to win it all. He was a 5 time all star, a great player in Vancouver, and really great when he returned to FLorida, but I just never saw him as that team leading goalie.

That said - he will always have that special place when it comes to his Olympics work and specifically backing Canada on home soil for the 2010 Olympics.

The rest of the pack - all needed base cards. Can keep that trend up!

25 Packs, 250 Cards, 857 Points.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Okay - If I Have To

Okay, let's talk about the one dupe card in today's pack and it is of course, Patrick Roy. I am not one that likes to heap praise on the man, but even I have to say, with 4 Stanley Cup rings, 551 career wins, a long tenure in Montreal and a long tenure in Colorado, there are still three memories I have of him that are tops.

3 - April 1, 1998 - When Patrick came flying out of the Colorado net to meet Detroit's goalie Chris Osgood at centre ice, where Chris pummeled Roy and left him bleeding

2 - May 9, 1996 - WHen Patrick put Jeremy Roenick in his place during a press conference commenting he couldn't hear Jeremy's remarks due to the Stanley Cup rings

1 - December 2, 1995 - His last game in a Montreal Habs uni when he was blasted out of the game after being left out to suffer a beating, letting in 9 goals before being pulled

Keepers in the pack...

Some solid goalies with Luongo and Potvin!

24 Packs, 240 Cards, 827 Points.

Saturday, September 26, 2020

A Fighter

 Another day, another nice 2001-02 Upper Deck Victory Gold parallel card to talk about!

Jason Krog is a fighter - I don't mean in the sense of how he plays, but his fight in his career to strive to play at the most elite level. His first games in the NHL were in 1999-00 after 6 years between BCJHL and the U. of New Hampshire, while also then playing for a couple different teams in the AHL in 1999-00. He popped back and forth between the AHL and NHL in 2000-01 through 2002-03, after which, the lockout pushed him to Europe, though he returned in 2006-07 and again in 2008-09.

Though his NHL career lasted 202 games over parts of 7 seasons with 5 teams, Jason fought for all his time and earned it. He finished his career with 5 seasons in Europe/Russia last playing in 2015-16.

Some great base cards including Messier, Rinning and Forsberg - and Samsonov who seemed to be everywhere hockey card in the 00s.

We end with a single dupe. I can live with a single dupe per pack...hope that's all we stay at.

23 Packs, 230 Cards, 799 Points.

Friday, September 25, 2020

One That's Gonchar off the list

I am not one to chase large parallel sets - too much work I think, for the reward. At least that's my view at the moment, but each one of these I see, I like so much better than the white border base.

Gonchar was a high point defenseman, specifically, he was the second highest points total for the decade of the 00s with 500 points to Lidstrom's 550. Either total is amazing for a defender.

Over his 20 year career, he was able to get one Stanley Cup during the late 2000s with Pittsburgh, though most of his career was with the Caps which is where he started in the NHL.

A Calgary heavy pack otherwise as Theo in anything other than a Flames uniform is not right.

22 Packs, 220 Cards, 771 Points.

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Drawing Comparisons

 So in the base cards today, a couple things stand out to me...

With two high calibre goalies, I remember Hasek, when he first arrived in the NHL, being compared among my friends to Roy (which I always argued Hasek was nothing like Roy because I though Hasek may actually be a good goalie...but Toronto bias...what can I say). 

It's one of those great discussions of sports players - comparing my guy versus your guy, or someone new versus a veteran, or someone from your generation versus your dad's or son's generation - who was the better player, who did more for there team, etc. I always find these discussions heavily personally biased - which is fine as everyone will have their personal reasons like watching Roy win the Stanley Cup for a Montreal fan, or having Hasek help turn Buffalo around for a Sabres fan, but time always seems to make players seem different than when they played.

I remember having a stack of cards and a friend and I would just randomly pull a couple and argue about who was better (much of the time we would agree - like Gretzky versus anyone). It was a fun way to spend time with the cards and with a friend.

Peter Bondra is one of those players that I think "aged well" as it were. Don't get me wrong, he had a great run for a number of years with Washington. With that Washington connection, I remember when Ovechkin starts, being compared to Bondra. How time has changed that comparison as Ovi has amassed a long streak of great seasons. Again, Bondra is great and may be a borderline Hall of Famer if you look back at his stats, but even Bondra will agree, Ovechkin has well surpassed him in a comparison.

The comparison is fun though - what would a team with Bondra and Ovi look like? How would they play together? What if they were generationally switched - would Ovi have done better in Bondra's era, or vice versa.

The discussions could go on and on.

That's part of what makes the collecting fun - the little pieces of cardboard that provide stats, fuel to the fire of who did well when, and who accomplished what, or, what they were like before they accomplished much...

Farkas here before an NHL career of about 15 games, a third of which were in the playoffs, and Ponikarovksy right at the start of a 477 game career spent mostly in Toronto.

21 Packs, 210 Cards, 741 Points.

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

An Almost Leaf

I do like these gold parallels...

Tyson spent 4 full season with St. Louis and almost 2 with Phoenix. He was very much known as a penalty drawing pest during this time. As it worked out, his time in Phoenix was finished when he was traded to Toronto, and although he suited up for the Marlies, he never did make it to the NHL with the Leafs before calling it a career at the end of 2006-07 which resulted in ending his career like he started, with a Canadian organization that he never suited up for (as he was drafted originally by Vancouver).

The rest of the 2001-02 Upper Deck Victory pack...

Can never go wrong with a solid Yzerman card!

20 Packs, 200 Cards, 699 Points.

Here we have the last of the cards from - the last odds and sods of Leaf goodies.

So much blue! The Be A Player Memorabilia Corson is actually the blue parallel and numbered out of 100. The CuJo Atromic card looks very much like the McDonalds die cut set from the same year, though these are more metallic in look than white card stock. The Mats Sundin in the middle is a parallel as well, and Jonas at the end is a Heritage card done right.

We follow up with some old school looking parallels from Topps with Sundin and Roberts, a Pacific Complete Telqvist, the 2007-08 Mats which is on one of my least favourite O Pee Chee designs with the black and tan...dark tan...yeesh colour border, before a couple 2013-14 O Pee Chee with their much brighter and snazzier border.


We end with the final card of the 8 Maple Leaf 1997-98 Pacific Paramount base card that I needed to complete that team set - always a nice little "YAY" in getting those team sets done.

With that - another big thank you to Steven for sending these all along, and if you haven't checked out their site - definitely worth doing so, plenty of gems to be found.

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

A Duplicat

We will save the title card until the end, up first...

First up, magic Mike. He made it through 3 NHL games in 2000-01 and three more in 2001-02 - and that was it for the D-man. He preceeded this with a handful of seasons in the IHL, and a handful afterwards in the AHL.

As it turns out, Derek ended up with a similar career with 4 games that first season and one the following for the Wild. Although, instead of North American leagues, Derek spent his time in European leagues instead.

The base card keepers include...

I was going to say of course Super Mario is a great, but it made me take a quick peak at the checklist and guess what? No Gretzky! Not sure why that's the case but seems shocking.

Last up, the dupes...

and there is the cat! Post Toronto Potvin.

19 Packs, 190 Cards, 669 Points.

Second last post "addition" for cards from Today, we have the Upper Deck hockey cards.

A few really nice cards here. Mahovlich is always great, the Classic Portraits are neat, if maybe a little lacking on use of the space on the front, and Gatorade cards are cool, especially with the bilingual on the back, and rainbow foil front.

I didn't fully grasp that Trilogy sets are so small, relatively speaking, but here with Matthews and Marner, you have the complete Toronto team set from the base set. Yup, just two Leafs, and now they are all mine.

You thought the 2017-18 Trilogy Toronto team set of two was small - the year before here with Rielly, was just the single card!

I do like the uniqueness at least that Trilogu has with the various golden base designs, at least they are somewhat distinct. They didn't use it for all years of the brand, but those are the ones that stick out a bit more to me.

Monday, September 21, 2020

Were They Golden?

I've had an interesting time looking at the different prospect cards which have come up, and given this is the gold parallel, just had to review these prospects!

Thomas Zeigler - no relation to WWE Dolph Ziggler - had 5 games in the NHL with the Lightning in 2001-01 and....that's it...

Dmitry fared much better as he played about 180 games for the Lighning between 2000-01 and 2006-07 before going to Philly and playing 40 games there before leaving the NHL to play 6 more years in Russian leagues, as Russian players are apt to do.

The rest of the base are fairly solid including a nice, unique shot of Nabokov in the middle.

One dupe I fear there may be more the further we go....

18 Packs, 180 Cards, 643 Points.

Let's end today with the last group of baseball cards from the box I received from

We start tiny with a mid-80s Topps sticker and a 1989 Topps UK Mini insert. Add some Donruss and make sure to make it difficult to notice any of them when you have a couple Metal Universe cards that just draw the attention in the group. Not sure if it's a good thing or a bad thing, but they get attention!

Poor Devon sliding into the mouth of the beast...

Phew - much more "normal" cards here. Like the angle on the Vernon Wells Fleer Tradition card, looking up at him and making him look larger than life.

I do find it an interesting tactic that some sets did in the mid-late 00s, the thick card parallel, so they could be used as decoys (kind of), which is what the gold parallel Bowman Mills is.

Daniel Norris was drafted by Toronto, but didn't really have much opportunity with the big league club before finding his way to Detroit, and seeming to find himself a bit in 2020 compared to the last few years.

The Rookies card is a nice homage to the DOnruss sets of the past, and the Rated Rookie die cut SN is all kinds of awesome - but man, that Rated logo is HUGE!

Last up is the lone Jays card from the 2015 Panini Prizm Passion insert set, so another one Jays insert knocked off the excessively long list that I don't bother keeping.

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Another Great

Today's pack is 10 for 10 on being needed base cards for the 2001-02 Upper Deck Victory what exactly were there?

It's a shame Pierre had to spend a few years in Montreal during his near 2 decade career in the NHL, but I'll try not to hold it against him. The 4 time All-Star (1990, 1993, 1994 and 1996) broke 100 points twice in his career, including 58 goals and 132 points in 1992-93 with the Islanders. This is right when I was most following hockey as a kid, so I remember him best in his late Buffalo days, and these days in New York.

My fave of the rest has to be the Russian Rocket - always really enjoyed Pavel.

17 Packs, 170 Cards, 615 Points.

We will end today with some more baseball cards from, these being the rest of the Topps brand related cards in the box sent my way.

2001 Topps HD (I assume given the thick card stock, that the HD stands for heavy, they be thick). These three top row cards are the first I have seen of the set. Very glossy, very nice pics and clean front - not a bad design, kinda like it, and full stats on the back are nice too.

Also really love the snazzy purple Lind parallel. I am nowhere near getting a rainbow of parallel cards for any Jay - just so much to collect, it isn't a priority at all, but is something in the back of my mind, that I would think is pretty cool to have on a 9 pocket page.

A couple Opening Day cards. The Maple Leaf design is a nice Canadian nod - I like it.

Last up, the lone Jays insert for 2020 Opening Day Spring Has Sprung with Vladdy. I love the "showing up to work" walk on this one - great way to end the post for today...just walk it...on?

Saturday, September 19, 2020

Solid Hands

Quick side topic to start - I have been getting the recently purchased lot of cards together and a little organized (meaning more properly in boxes without really looking at anything yet). I will say, there are three binders which, having taken the cards out, have a smell to them (likely cigarette). It isn't horrendous, but noticeable.

It made me question whether the boxed cards were similar, but if there is any such smell - I can't detect it. After spending 10 minutes smelling my cards, smelling the new cards, going back and smelling my cards again, smelling old ones, new ones, red ones, blue ones, I think the old smell on the new cards is fine, just different. There is no visible issue with any of the cards at all (save the few that were bent, etc due to poor storage), so it's not like anything is really wrong with them. "Old" smelling, meaning maybe a little attic-y or "stored" if that makes sense, but nothing more than that. I have had those types of cards before, and now I couldn't tell you what use to have that card when smelling my collection.

For the "smoke" smell of the binders, I'll try a couple things to damper the smell, especially since I have time before I start going through these, but I don't think I need do anything about the "old" smell.

Let me know if you have any thoughts on the matter. 

I've talked here before about the fact that most athletes looking to be in the top tier of a professional sport don't turn out to be superstars. Not everyone will be a Connor McDavid or Sidney Crosby. Heck, the odds of getting to the elite level of the major leagues, NHL, NBA, etc are minuscule to begin with. The teams need to dress full rosters, so plenty of guys are able to play solid careers and be a part of the team, but may not be that superstar - or heck - even remembered for much.

A prime example (at least to me)...

A career started in the NHL in 1995 and that went through 2012 - and I honestly can't remember much of his accomplishments. I don't mean to slight Andrew as it probably says more about my time really following hockey, and how it wasn't every player and every team through most of the period. Also the fact that, he wasn't playing on teams I ever really cared deeply about when I did follow.

A career that was spent in Minnesota, Colorado, Washington, Atlanta, Nashville and Chicago, he had over 700 points in over 1,100 games. I am sure I saw him plenty through highlights and scores, etc, but no specific memories of his play really stand out to me.

He looks so dejected at this on his card...sorry Andrew.

Then there are superstars who do burn memories and moments into your mind as you grow up watching sports. Sergei Federov had a few of these, but as a Leaf fan, I can't say any are specifically good memories as they usually involve his battering my poor Leafs... I feel how Andrew Brunette looks...

16 Packs, 160 Cards, 585 Points.

Let's keep with the hockey theme in ending today with some of the Leaf additions I received recently from - with a friendly reminder - if you like cards for a dime - check them out!

Chalk it up under the things I learned today - I didn't realize Trilogy had sets back in the 00s (this one being 2003-04), and here is solid proof with 4 cards from the set for me. Not only that, they include three of my faves from the period - Mogilny, Sundin and Belfour.

The second part is some 2006-07 Upper Deck base which pretty much complete the non-subset, base Leafs.

The top row here is the Leaf content from the 2008-09 Rookie Box Set from Upper Deck. Schenn and Kulemin went on to solid careers whil Robbie Earl had 9 games with the Buds and then parts of two seasons with Minnesota, but otherwise spent his time in Europe and the AHL.

From that same year, we then get some more Trilogy cards - another first for Leafs being in my collection from this set, and again, we get a good handful with Sundin leading the way.

We end the sharing today with a couple newer O Pee Chee sets that get some assistance in my collection. The regular 2015-16 O Pee Chee (top three cards) are classic O Pee Chee in design and feel. If the sets were smaller, I'd collect more O Pee Chee sets, but they, at this point, are too large for me to focus on when I have a ton of other sets slowly on the go.

The 2019-20 O Pee Chee Platinum, are some really nice looking cards. I like the design and look in hand, much better than they scanned here. Not to mention, you have all the Leaf top guns here.

If this was the last of what was sent, that would be great, but there's still plenty more to share another day!

Friday, September 18, 2020

Greats Mats

Yes, I am biased by the time I grew up and who I rank as my top players, and more specifically, top Maple Leaf captains of all time. Doug Gilmour and Mats Sundin would be in the running among the greats for many, but others would choose differently whereas they are my top 2 favourites. Consider it to be the impact of actually having them lead your heroic team that you look up to as a kid. Greanted, neither brought a cup to Toronto, so that is something other earlier captains have over them regardless.

Oh - the prospect game!

Billy was in the NHL from 2000 through 2003 with stints paying for Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and the New York Rangers. Over that time, he had about 80 games, 2 goals, 8 assists, and about 250 PIMs - so you can understand his role, and with the way hockey changes around that time, why he likely was squeezed out. He did play in other leagues around the world through 2012 before retiring.

Greg - a single NHL game for Pittsburgh in 2000-01 - that's it.

Johan had the longest NHL career of the bunch playing from 2000-2013 with stops in Atlanta, Pittsburgh, New Jersey, Dallas and Vancouver.

The rest of the pack...

I guess I had to get the Roy, but is offset by a nice Brodeur.

15 Packs, 150 Cards, 555 Points.

Before we go - a quick Listia add on. With the change to Listia points a while back, I am again not bothering much with the site. Still the odd card that goes for cheap...

Sure, he isn't a new card, but another copy works just fine for me!

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Not Quite

I am finding it interesting looking into some of these prospects from the 2001-02 Upper Deck Victory base set as we open these packs, so let's see how these two fared.

Travis Scott had a single appearance for the Kinds in 2000-01, and then didn't dress again in the NHL ever. He played about 6 seasons in the AHL followed by a couple in Russia and one in Germany before calling it a career.

Andreas on the other hand had a solid NHL career. Starting in LA, then going to Florida, Detroit, Anaheim and Philadelphia, he played in 580 career NHL games, and won a Stanley Cup with Detroit in 2007-08 - I'd call that a winning career. He did spend some time on and off in the AH and his last season was there in 2012-13 before retiring.
These golds are nicer than the base white borders I think. They definitely continue to grow on me.
The rest of the base include one of my favourite snipers with Mogilny, and one of my favourite Canucks of all time in Linden.

14 Packs, 140 Cards, 513 Points.

THE - how about some more shares...a few new to me sets, and first additions for Jays in these sets...

2003 Upper Deck Sweet Spot - a set I hadn't seen before this box, and now I have most of the pure base Jays cards in the set. I really like the design, but my one nit-pick would be the background on the front would be fine is just left alone instead of the purple/blue tint to it.

Still never a fan of those uniforms either...

2004 Playoff Prestige - very similar to Sweet Spot above, didn't have any Jays from the set beofre this and now, four including Delgado from yesterday. The uniforms - still meh. To be clear, I am fine with the "Toronto" shirts - it's the T logo and the hats.

I at least know the set - 2007 Topps Chrome - I just didn't have any until getting these three. I think the Wells catch wins for best photo though, pretty easily.

Last up...

2008 Upper Deck Documentary. The only issue I have with the set is, if you are going to document every game, have a picture from that game on the card, instead of reusing the same photo on multiple cards. Other than that, I wish they would do this set every year, great way to keep cardboard memories of each and every game of a season.

Still plenty more to show from this one...but maybe next time!