Friday, December 30, 2011

Card of the Month - December 2011

Just one day to go, I almost dropped the ball on a Card of the Month for December. After yesterday's lengthy baseball post it's back to hockey today...

Recently I've been focusing primarily on older hockey cards, but over the past couple of months I have accumulated a few Young Guns rookie cards of note. I've already shown two of the better ones in Steven Stamkos and Claude Giroux, which was actually last month's Card of the Month (can you really still get Giroux's Young Guns rookie for around $10? If so, get it now!). Those were both great additions, in fact it just so happens that as of this morning they are the two players leading the NHL in points and goals:

December's Card of the Month is the Young Guns rookie of a player who has the potential to join the likes of Giroux and Stamkos atop the NHL stat leader lists someday, perhaps in the very near future:

2010-11 Upper Deck - #456 - Tyler Seguin - Young Guns RC

Tyler Seguin has grown by leaps and bounds in his second year with the Bruins. Though he's admittedly cooled a bit after starting the season at a torrid scoring pace, he has improved dramatically from his rookie season in virtually every statistical category. It hasn't all been perfect, in fact he was benched one game for missing a mandatory team meeting on a road trip a few weeks back. Nevertheless, let's look at where he was at last year and where he's at now.

In his rookie season he played in 74 games, scoring 11 goals and assisting on 11 others, for 22 points. Not bad for an 18-year-old kid, although there were without question more impressive seasons from other rookies like Taylor Hall, who scored as many goals as Seguin had points, or Jeff Skinner, who surpassed 30+ goals and 30+ assists en route to the Calder Trophy. So far this year in just 33 games Tyler Seguin has 14 goals, 17 assists and 31 points, all improvements on last season's totals already. His 31 points are good for the top spot on the Bruins scoring chart. He's scored 3 goals on the power play this year, something he did only once last season. He's also tallied 3 game-winners so far, the first 3 of his career. Perhaps most impressive though is his improvement in +/-. Last year he seemed a bit too focused on offense at times, and his -4 on the season reflected that. This year? How about a +25 to lead the entire NHL! I know some of this is due to the fact that the Bruins play a tight defensive game and have the best goaltending tandem in the league, but I think Seguin deserves at least some measure of credit for improving his game at both ends of the ice.

The Bruins are playing some of the best, most consistent hockey I've ever witnessed these past couple of months. In the 24 games they've played since November 1st they are on an astounding 21-2-1 tear that has brought them from the basement to the top of the mountain in the Eastern Conference standings. Hopefully both Seguin and the team can keep rolling as we enter 2012...

4 comments:

Dan said...

the giroux still worth it at $17? i don't rally collect hockey cards,but a huge flyers fan,and he should be a flyer for a while.

shoeboxlegends said...

I'd say so, maybe not an absolute steal for $17 but when you consider he's been leading the entire NHL in the point race for weeks now it's a good price. Especially when the Young Guns rookies of other top scorers like Stamkos, Malkin, Seguin, etc all go for over $50 time and time again...

1967ers said...

OT - what is that Cheevers in the header image in Cleveland gear ? I don't know that set. That's a cool card.

shoeboxlegends said...

That Cheevers is from In the Game's 2007-08 Between the Pipes set. It's part of an 11-card subset at the very end of the base set (cards 90-100). The subset is called The Rival League and all 11 cards feature goalies from the WHA. Not a huge fan of this set but those 11 cards at the end are great!

http://www.zistle.com/library/sets/17844-2007-08-between-the-pipes

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