Monday, February 27, 2012

TRADE DEADLINE 2012 - The Canucks End "The Hodgson Era" Early

It's really hard to put my thoughts into words right now. I'm sure you all know why. Cody Hodgson was traded to the Buffalo Sabres in this years Trade Deadline at approximately 12:40 Pacific. He is/was my favourite player. It's really hard seeing a guy you've cheered for and supported since his draft day to be snapped away from you just like that. Before I bounce from point to point let's look at the other acquisitions the Canucks made today and come back to CoHo.

TRADE #1
                                                                       
To Vancouver:                                                             
Samuel Pahlsson (C)

To Columbus:
Taylor Ellington (D)
4th Round Pick (2012)
4th Round Pick (2012)

This trade was the first of the three the Canucks made today and really was the only trade I thought was necessary. Samuel Pahlsson isn't a goal scorer nor a playmaker, he is a grinder. We saw what he could do winning a Stanley Cup in Anaheim and that is valuable experience that can only help the team. He fits in well as a fourth and/or third line guy. Smart and relatively cheap pickup by Mike Gillis.

At this point in the trade deadline I'm satisfied. I took the day off of school (which I had prepared for two weeks in advance) and "I got what I paid for". I think Gillis did well to address the slight absence of grit in our bottom 6. Fast forward to after the noon trade deadline. There were only a couple trades to be confirmed after noon and the Canucks were rumoured to be submitting a trade. I was anxious...I was excited...the best possible scenarios were running through my mind. Then this happened...

TRADE #2

To Vancouver:
Zack Kassian (RW)
Marc-Andre Gragnani (D)

To Buffalo:
Cody Hodgson (C)
Alexander Sulzer (D)

You all know I just recently officially announced my first ever player collection. That player was of my favourite player on the Canucks roster and in the league - Cody Hodgson. The hype around Cody was huge, especially after the fantastic performance he had at the World Juniors. I loved watching him develop, through the hard times and easy I was always there to back up Cody. I truly believed he was going to develop into the eventual captain of the Vancouver Canucks and maybe even lead us to a Stanley Cup. A kind of Trevor Linden type story (dare I say it). But Mike Gillis threw the hockey world a curveball and delt Cody out of the blue to the Sabres.

Now I get what Gillis was thinking. Maybe Kassian isn't currently ready to make a consistent impact in the NHL like Cody Hodgson is doing right now BUT he supplies huge upside in the future. He's a big boy (6'4" / 230 lbs.) he's mean, aggressive and plays with a lot of heart. These are all aspects I love in players but it just feels like we sold away our future that we had already invested so much in. 

Who knows though, maybe Kassian will end up being my new favourite player (even though Cody still holds that title...I think). It's hard having your favourite player wearing another teams colours, but I do wish Cody well and future success in his professional career (as long as it's not against the Canucks). 

As for Buffalo fans that want to know more about Cody (Marko) he has exceptional hockey sense and he sees the game very well. He's creative and has recently had the knack to score big goals at big times. Thus, the nickname was created - "Clutch Cody". His weakness is his physicality, he get's bumped around a bit in the Western Conference but what I like is that he's still not scared to get into those corners and the dirty areas. His speed was also critiqued but quickly taken back as he proved he can keep up with the NHL's best. He's a great leader and a franchise player. He's a keeper!

I know a limited amount about Kassian. I only really have watched him in the WJ's and other than that just highlight reel's on YouTube. If anyone has any really in depth info about him I'd love to learn more. From what the scouts and so called "experts" say he is a Milan Lucic/Todd Bertuzzi type player. I like both of them so if he turns out like any of those two I will be happy.

The second half of this deal was a swap of two d-men. Alex Sulzer who is now heading to Buffalo is a solid young defenseman who get's the job done. I think the Canucks really got the better d-man in return though as Gragnani is a skilled young man with good hands and has already some impressive stats. Consider that he is 2nd on the Sabres in both plus/minus as well as minutes on the PP and that is a player I'll take any day of the week.

Probably the most important question hockey card wise is do I keep on collecting Cody Hodgson card as a player collection? What do you think? I'm no fair-weather fan of Cody but I'm not sure I'd love to collect other team's cards as a player collection.

I guess hockey is a business, and business' can be brutal. I learned that today the heard way.

TRADE #3
To Vancouver:
Andrew Gordon (RW)

To Anaheim:
Sebastien Erixon (D)

This was more of a minor trade but as far as I'm concerned we got a compact and speedy winger that has struggled to break into the NHL even though he was drafted almost 8 years ago. He has 12 NHL games under his belt and has produced 2 points in that time.

So that's it trade wise for the Canucks. What did you guys think of the deadline? There were 15 trades (1 lower than last year) and how did you enjoy the coverage of the deadline whether it be TSN, Sportsnet and/or Score? Do you have info on Kassien? Were you ever in my position where your favourite player got moved from your favourite team? 

GO NUCKS GO!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Trade #5 - A Tribute to a Lost Canuck

While watching the Canucks vs Devils game I'm going to blog about a trade I received from a fellow Devils fan blogger - Dave. After just completing a trade a couple weeks ago we decided to make our fourth trade in history. This one included a card I pulled from my box break of Parkhurst Champions.

TO DAVE:
2011-12 Parkhurst Champions Rick MacLeish AUTO
Plus Extras

TO ME:
1976-77 OPC Rick Blight RC
1983-84 OPC Patrick Sundstrom RC
1997-98 BAP Pavol Demitra AUTO
2005-06 UD Series 2 Ruslan Fedotenko "Game Jersey"

It seems we've gotten better and better at picking what the other would enjoy to have in their collection and I'm happy building a trading history with Dave as it is always fun and we both benefit.

So let's look at what I have to add to my repertoire:



We start out with a couple of retro RC's from my Vancouver Canucks. It's always nice to add rookies and older cards I wouldn't particularly chase but still think are cool. I think I have that exact same JOFA helmet Sundstrom is wearing in that picture. 



I'm hopelessly addicted to jersey cards or any type of GU memorabilia when it comes to hockey cards so this is a nice addition to the GU tin. Ruslan is a former Stanley Cup winner and it's a nice coloured swatch and not a generic white.



Finally the card I was most anticipating from this trade was this AUTO card of Pavol Demitra. As many of you know (if not all), Demitra tragically passed away in a plane crash along with the rest of his teammates from Lokomotiv Yaroslavl. This card is special to me as he was a Canuck at one point in his career and it's nice to have a piece of his history in my collection.

Overall, this was an easy and smooth trade and yet another perfect example of how kind and generous this hockey blogging world is. Thanks Dave! I'm sure we'll have another not too far down the road!

GO NUCKS GO!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

CARDBOARD CAPTIONS - Double Take Head Scratcher

It's been quite some time since I've showcased a card that just doesn't seem right. Today that will change with the card I'm about to show you. It's from a fairly commonly known set: 2001-02 ITG BAP Memorabilia. This is from the times when ITG had the rights to use NHL logos etc. on their cards. But it seems as if they had a hard time getting more than one headshot of the same player. Take a look at what I'm talking about.


Okay so far, so good. B-MO in a regular type skating shot in a Canucks jersey. What's weird about this card Michael? Well look at the back...


What? That's not Brendan Morrison??! Am I missing something here?? That is a random dude with a Canucks jersey, not the centre from the former West Coast Express line! 

Am I missing something guys? Was this some sort of weird way ITG was promoting BAP by putting random guys on the back of cards that wanted to "Be A Player"? 

Well this card has always confused me in a huge way, so I decided to look at some other cards from this product to see if they did the same thing. NOPE! They all have the same person on the front and back.

Call me crazy but I think something went really wrong with this one!

GO NUCKS GO!

Friday, February 17, 2012

WHAT DOES 25 BUCKS GETCHA? (Card 3 - Part 3) A Post From a Foreign Land

Well I'm on the road with the family right now because my sister has a cheer competition in the states. So we dropped down south to the U.S of A and as of about 40 minutes ago things were going great. We were downtown Seattle staying in our regular hotel when we stay in one of my fav US cities - the Sheraton. But now we find ourselves in Tacoma in an uncomfortable, dirty motel...ya know the classic riches to rags story. But as long as my sis is with her team it makes her happy, which makes me happy so I'll suck it up. I'm no baby when it comes to this stuff but there is a line.

Anyways this is (I believe) my first post from a foreign land. I've been doing my best to stay up to date with my daily reading of all my fav blogs, but if some of my comments have been repeating or misspelled blame it on my iPhone's keypad.

The one upside to this motel is that there is free wi-fi (no heating but don't worry free wi-fi). Since I have one extra card scanned from home I thought it might be appropriate to relax, kick back and blog. After all, I kinda miss you guys (awwwww).

So with no further introduction here is the most expensive purchases out of the bunch I made with my 25 dollar pre-paid card:



This is a really nice piece to add to my CoHo collection! After scouring over what Hodgson card to purchase on eBay I landed this OPC Retro RC. Most of his RC's were around the 10 dollar mark but this one was my favourite, even the Young Guns were not appealing to me. This card also taught me his birthday is tomorrow, which makes him exactly 5 years and 6 days older than me. Now that I think about it, that's not much older.

In other Cody Hodgson news, what a season he is having! With the injury to RNH, Cody is a legitimate contender for the Calder! He has 32 points (4th among rookies and 6 points off of 1st) playing on the third line. Imagine what he could do in RNH spot in Edmonton! I hope he keeps his stats up and his smart play consistent, after all I believe he is the Linden of my generation (fingers crossed)!

Before I forget I paid $4.99 as the BIN price. Plus about 3 bucks in shipping. Not too bad considering these are going for $25 at my LCS. 

With this Cody Hodgson card my remaining balance is:

2011-12 Black Diamond Richard Brodeur "Dual Jersey" - $0.99 (+ 2.50 shipping)
2011-12 Certified Yann Sauve "Freshman Signatures" - $1.24 (+ 2.48 shipping)
2010-11 Ultimate Hockey Sedins "Ultimate Duos" /50 - $0.99 (+3.49 shipping)
2011-12 OPC Retro Cody Hodgson RC - $4.99 (+3.05 shipping)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
+ $5.27

CODY HODGSON COUNT

Cards: 4
Base: 1
Rookies: 3

C4KHODGSON has been updated (although it is still kinda under construction).

GO NUCKS GO!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

WHAT DOES 25 BUCKS GETCHA? (Card 3 - Part 2) Quadruple Sedins?

I'm going to let the card do most of the talking on this one. You know how it works, 25 dollar limit on eBay and this is card number 3. Like I said this is a "Quadruple" card and I don't mean four cards, I mean four jersey swatches.

I snagged this card at a surprising $0.99 plus shipping and when you see the quality of the card, the product and the low numbering I think this was sorta highway robbery.



Every time I look at this card I think "Wow, two art ross winners on one card and it only sells for a buck?" Anyways I'm really happy to steal this card away and the buyer was probably one of the most professional I've ever encountered. Along with a well written note he stuck in this as extra:


Yes it's a 10 cent card but, it's the thought that counts! What do you guys think of the card? Any great deals you've been able to scoop up lately?

Additionally, I'll be away for the next week or so, so don't expect much in terms of blogging in the next 5-7 days. See you soon!

2011-12 Black Diamond Richard Brodeur "Dual Jersey" - $0.99 (+ 2.50 shipping)
2011-12 Certified Yann Sauve "Freshman Signatures" - $1.24 (+ 2.48 shipping)
2010-11 Ultimate Hockey Sedins "Ultimate Duos" /50 - $0.99 (+3.49 shipping)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
+ $13.31

GO NUCKS GO!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

(NHCD) BOX BREAK - 2011-12 Parkhurst Champions

I hope everybody had a great National Hockey Card Day, I know I sure did (for the most part). It was my one legitimate excuse a year to go and spend a good chunk of my day at the local card store. After circling around the shop looking at extremely overpriced Cody Hodgson cards (I'm talking RIDICULOUSLY overpriced) I decided to look at some higher end boxes I've been moaning and groaning about.

It came down to two boxes, Limited or Parkhurst Champions. I somehow couldn't get myself to pay also 150 bucks for 7 cards, so I went with Upper Decks Parkhurst product. My local card store is kind of a mom and pop type shop and they're super great people, so I busted a box of UD Series 1 for the store and they even agreed to give me a CoHo Young Gun if they were to pull one. Unfortunately, they didn't. But they did give me the single of Cody Hodgson from the NHCD packs as well as three other packs.



I think this year the card design of NHCD was a home run. But now onto the box break!


I'm sure you must have all seen the pictures if not own this product already so I'll spare you the reviews, but I have to say I really love the look of these cards. Classy and good quality and that's what I want to see for a box that sets you back 100 bones. 



Like I said the base cards are fantastic and I ended up pulling all 4 Canucks incorporated into the 100 cards base set. Another thing I have to say is that the players in this 100 card set are absolutely stacked! This lineup is jaw dropping greatness and just thinking throughout the break that an autograph of any of these legends could be in my collection is exciting! I pulled 70 of the 100 base so this set is quite accomplishable. 

Next are the "Champ's Minis" which I think are pretty cool but also I huge pain in the neck to sort.


As you can see from the back of these two George Vezina "Champ's Minis", one is green meaning it is the green back parallel. I pulled 4 of these total plus...


According to the checklist, this card is number 52 of 57 which means it is a "Champ's Mini SP". BUT the back of the card (which I failed to scan) is green so this card is actually a "Champ's Mini SP Green Back Parallel"...got that? Can someone explain to me what a "Parkhurst Back" is though? I can't seem to figure that one out.



I'm a sucker for any type artist renditions type card so it's no doubt that I really like these cards! Plus a Gordie Howe hockey card is always excepted in my collection.


I pulled one "Black and White Renditions" and it's of Bobby Hull shown above, missing tooth and chest hair included. 


Now onto some of the coolest inserts in awhile. I pulled one double player version (Gretzky/Howe above). I think these cards pack huge emotion and hockey history and I have loved reading them thus far!


The top of these three "Wire" inserts is of Mike Bossy in the 1982 Stanley Cup finals where the Islanders beat the Vancouver Canucks. But you know what hurts more?


Ouch! 1994 Stanley Cup finals AND Mark Messier...just OUCH! But you know what hurts more?...




...do you know where I'm going with this...




...take a guess...



Did I mention I extremely dislike Mark Messier? But in all fairness even though I highly dislike the player and this moment in hockey history I still really respect this card and how cool it is. I figured I might get two "Base AUTO's" but getting a "Wire AUTO" (which are harder pulls) is still really cool. In fact according to the Upper Deck blog apparently they are separated into different groups. Messier is in group A so this pull is technically a 1:2,145 pack pull. Not bad if I do say so myself!

My second AUTO you ask?



Excuse my lack of knowledge of Rick MacLeish but I really don't know much about this guy. But from the picture it looks like he played without a helmet so that earns him some respect in my books. His stats are pretty impressive and he's a Canadian boy so I'll happily take his AUTO!

So that's it for the break and even though I pulled a Messier AUTO I'm not all that discouraged and I'm a pretty happy camper overall. Although if you're a fan of Mess and/or the Rangers, I'm willing to part with him for a fair card in return.

The Luongo and Brodeur cards bring an update to my Goalie Project:

Alex Auld - 3/3 COMPLETE! 27 TOTAL
Murray Bannerman - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
Martin Brochu - 3/3 COMPLETE! 4 TOTAL
Richard Brodeur - 1/3 COMPLETE! 15 TOTAL (1 JERSEY, 1 EVENT-USED, 1 AUTO)
Gary Bromley
Bruce Bullock
Sean Burke - 2/3 COMPLETE! 21 TOTAL
Frank Caprice
Jacques Caron
Dan Cloutier - 3/3 COMPLETE! 32 TOTAL (1 JERSEY)
Ed Dyck
Ken Ellacott
Bob Essensa - 3/3 COMPLETE! 14 TOTAL
Mike Fountain - 3/3 COMPLETE! 11 TOTAL
Troy Gamble - 2/2 COMPLETE! 21 TOTAL
George Gardner 2/3 COMPLETE! 2 TOTAL
John Garrett - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
Glen Hanlon - 1/3 COMPLETE! 5 TOTAL
Johan Hedberg - 3/3 COMPLETE! 7 TOTAL
Rick Heinz
Corey Hirsch - 1/3 COMPLETE! 2 TOTAL (1 AUTO)
Charlie Hodge - 2/2 COMPLETE! 3 TOTAL
Arturs Irbe - 1/3 COMPLETE! 3 TOTAL
Jason LaBarbera - 2/3 COMPLETE! 4 TOTAL
Ken Lockett
Roberto Luongo - 3/3 COMPLETE! 58 TOTAL (1 JERSEY)
Drew MacIntyre - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
Cesare Maniago - 1/3 COMPLETE! 3 TOTAL
Bob Mason - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
Dave McClelland
Steve McKichan
Kirk McLean - 1/3 COMPLETE! 3 TOTAL (1 AUTO)
Rob McVicar - 1/1 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
Alfie Michaud - 1/1 COMPLETE! 7 TOTAL
Tyler Moss
Mika Noronen - 3/3 COMPLETE! 6 TOTAL
Maxime Ouellet - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
FĂ©lix Potvin - 3/3 COMPLETE! 31 TOTAL (1 AUTO)
Andrew Raycroft - 1/3 COMPLETE! 7 TOTAL
Curt Ridley - 2/3 COMPLETE! 2 TOTAL
Dany Sabourin - 2/3 COMPLETE! 2 TOTAL
Curtis Sanford - 3/3 COMPLETE! 7 TOTAL
Cory Schneider - 1/2 COMPLETE! 10 TOTAL (1 JERSEY)
Corey Schwab - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
Petr Skudra - 3/3 COMPLETE! 4 TOTAL
Gary Smith - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
Garth Snow - 2/3 COMPLETE! 2 TOTAL (1 AUTO)
Kevin Weekes - 2/3 COMPLETE! 2 TOTAL
Steve Weeks - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
Kay Whitmore - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL
Dunc Wilson - 1/3 COMPLETE! 2 TOTAL
Wendell Young - 1/3 COMPLETE! 1 TOTAL

In addition to that I also added another card to my very young Cody Hodgson PC.

CODY HODGSON COUNT

Cards: 3
Rookies: 2

So how was your NHCD? Did you go out with the fam and enjoy the day? Any big breaks? Let me know, and also if you're interested in the Messier card let me know!

GO NUCKS GO!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

RELEASE PREVIEW - 2011-12 Heroes and Prospects

Every year there are those highlight releases you just have to get your hands on, whether it be through single cards or boxes. Being a student that works only in the summer time and has a tight hockey card budget, a $100+ box is my "highest end" product and I'll only bust one or two a year. From the releases this year there has been nothing that really has caught my eye on the high-end market. Certified and Limited are really nice but I feel that the hits are much more basic then anything and Pinnacle is a rip-off  UD Series 1 and 2 don't offer me that bang for my buck I'm looking for and Black Diamond is generic as always. The list goes on and on and I can deal with singles on eBay or random packs here and there for those products. 

Although my only box this year (other than blasters) is Score I do have a few more boxes circled on my calendar. This years edition of "Heroes and Prospects" is one of those products. ITG has continued to come out with strong releases as far as I'm concerned and although most of their boxes are out of my price range, they have become by far my favourite manufacturer.

Now onto some previews, this years release marks the 8th edition of "H&P". The base consists of 200 cards with a variety of sub-sets that include: Heroes, International Prospects, CHL/AHL Prospects, CHL/AHL Rookies, CHL/AHL Grads, and Tributes.



As all of you know ITG does not have a licence from the NHL but they make good use of their CHL and AHL uniforms. I think that created a sort of niche and untouched market that collectors are attracted to. It's as if collectors feel they get ahead of their favourite up and comers by buying H&P. 

But a new subset included into this years release is what really intrigued me into eventually buying a box. The four "Tributes" cards are of players who have past away tragically in the past years. Unfortunately, two of the four were former Canucks. Luc Bourdon is one that really affected me a few years back and as you might know I recently picked up a RC AUTO as kind of a commemorative card to remember his life.  The two cards on ITG's blog are the ones below:



I really like the cards but I wish they contained a hint of colour to show kind of a spark of life that continues on and that their lives are not completely black and white. I'll be definitely trading/buying for these cards if I don't end up pulling them.

Next are the non-memorabilia inserts. There are five in total: Calder Cup Champions, Memorial Cup Champions, Family Ties, Tough Customers, and Class of 2012.




Inserted 1 in every 8 packs are the H&P Autographs. There were 3 on the blog but the one I found most exciting was this one:


The only AUTO I'm really looking for is of my favourite Canuck Cody Hodgson from the CHL Grads subset. 

Also inserted 1 in every 8 packs are the memorabilia cards. This is what REALLY interests me. If you're familiar with me then you know I'm a big fan of Game Used hockey cards and I'm really trying to grow that part of my collection in quantity as well as quality. Just take a look at some of the beauts in this product:




Definitely some crazy swatches of jerseys/logos etc. That Quad Patch above is just ridiculous! It's no doubt a pull that I can only dream of at this moment (but hopefully not too long). 




The "Moving Up" GU set is probably my favourite idea of them all. It would be neat to see how the player went from the minors to the big league. What would be even cooler though is if they included a write-up on the backs which I don't believe they do unfortunately. 

Finally we have the WOW factor cards. Yes the 1/1's...drool...



Once again ITG knocks these cards right out of the park. There are a few more on the blog once again but these two top the list. Especially the "Tribute Luc Bourdon Letter", now THAT would be a pull of a LIFETIME!

Overall I'm really excited about this release and hope to get my hands on it in the week it comes out. The exact release date is February 23rd (1 day before my birthday)!

So what about you...have you bought this product in the past? Did you have likes/dislikes? Will you buy it this year? Are there any other releases you're looking forward too?

Information found at According to Dr. Price

GO NUCKS GO!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

WHAT DOES 25 BUCKS GETCHA? (Card 3 - Part 1) A Couple of Steals

I recently bought my third 25 dollar pre-paid card so that I can buy some cards online. I received two cards in the mail a couple of days ago and I had a really good time tracking them down. But even better were the prices I was able to snag these puppies for! Let's get to it!



This card came from this years release of Black Diamond. Black Diamond could just be the most "consistent" of all Upper Deck products. They don't sway from the general design and it works. If people are still buying, why switch it up? This card has a retro 90's type feel to the back, maybe it's because of the old school Canucks logo. 

There were a lot of these double jersey Brodeur cards on the market but I really tried to get value out of the two colours. These red and blue/green swatches did the job and as a plus UD confirmed that these are in fact "Game Used" jersey swatches which one ups my current "Event Used" card of Brodeur. 




My second card is a Rookie AUTO of an up-and-coming defence man in the Canucks organization - Yann Sauve. He was selected in the 2nd round (41st overall) of the 2008 draft (the same draft year as Cody Hodgson). I think he needs one more year playing in the AHL until he can make a solid stride into the big league. Glad to snag this AUTO for cheap as I know of two local Sauve collectors that check the Bay quite often. Plus this is my first taste of Certified from this season - and I like!

Like I said I feel like I got some pretty good prices on these two cards. What do you think?

2011-12 Black Diamond Richard Brodeur "Dual Jersey" - $0.99 (+ 2.50 shipping)
2011-12 Certified Yann Sauve "Freshman Signatures" - $1.24 (+ 2.48 shipping)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
+ $17.79

Any luck with you guys lately on eBay and good deals you'd like to share?

GO NUCKS GO!