Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Huge Progress with 1971-72 Topps

Having completed the run of 1980s Topps hockey sets, I'm really making an effort in 2018 here to work towards that same goal with the '70s run.  I've already completed three Topps sets from the decade in 1973-74, 1974-75 and the iconic 1979-80 release, leaving me with seven to go.

Of those remaining seven sets, the one I'm pursuing with perhaps the most vigor is '71-72.  Like many hockey card collectors, I just love this design.  The bold "bubble letters" used for the team name, the bright colors, and the inset circle for the photograph that harkens back in some sense to 1959 Topps baseball; it's just great.

Admittedly, not every card in the set is a winner.  Like just about every set from this era, there's some airbrushing going on and some less than interesting choices as far as photographs go.

Overall though, I think it's a real gem.  When I began the year I had a respectable 36 cards from this set, with a few HOFers among that group.  With 132 cards on the checklist, that put me at just over 1/4 of a complete set, not bad but still a lot of work to do.

Well, in one of my very first card purchases of 2018 I was able to really fast-track this set build.  A trusted seller that I've purchased from many times before had a whole bunch of these listed on Sportlots as "EX" condition for 50 cents a card.  You often times don't get to see a photograph when buying on Sportlots, but since I'm not overly concerned with condition at this stage, and have had good experience with this seller in the past, I went for it.

In the end I added an impressive fifty cards to my set in one fell swoop!  With two exceptions that I paid 75 cents for, each and every one of them cost me just 50 cents.  At this price I added close to 40% of the set to my binder for what amounted to $28 shipped.

The cards are in great shape too now that I've got them in hand, certainly as good if not better than the three dozen I had previously.  A few of them, like Denis DeJordy here, suffer from the very common centering issues with this release, but overall most of them shine even there.

I'm not going to show all fifty cards here, but I've picked ten favorites from the group instead to keep things reasonable in terms of post length.  You had to know one or two Golden Seals cards would make the cut!

Ron Ellis' edge chipping made him the roughest of the fifty I received in terms of condition, but honestly even this one is more than acceptable for my set build.

This card of the under-rated Jean Pronovost was one of two that I shelled out a whole 75 cents for.  Fine by me, it's just about mint!

That could not have worked out any better.  If anything I'm kicking myself for not getting a serious jump start on this set sooner.  With these in hand I'm just about at 2/3 complete now.  True, I've still got some big names left including Bobby Orr, Ken Dryden's RC, and the second-year Bobby Clarke, but my binder looks a whole lot better now than it did a few weeks back!

I'll certainly be picking up more of these as the year goes on here, provided I can stay focused.  My want list is updated for this set too, so if you have any of these kicking around that I need I'm highly interested in trading!

4 comments:

Mark Hoyle said...

My favorite hockey set. Completed this as a kid from ripping packs.

shlabotnikreport said...

'71/'72 is a fun set, no doubt. I've only got a couple, but that's more about it falling outside of my team/player collections than anything else.

Eric C. Loy said...

This set freaks me out a bit, with the re-use of some player bodies with cut-out heads. The Paul Shmyr card is one of the worst examples.

Kin said...

I love this set. Looking forward to more posts.

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