Tuesday, April 10, 2018

White Whale Speared, Dream Set Complete

It's funny how things work out sometimes.

In the past month month or so I completed two different collecting projects; both of which I started years ago and neither of which I truly thought I'd ever complete.  Yup, it's been a good 2018 so far here at Shoebox Legends!

In the past I may have saved posts on each of these projects for a "rainy day" (which usually means "will never get to it"), but I'm trying to improve this year on posting about and appreciating new cards as they come in, so today I've got the first one to share with you.

Here's the recent pick-up that finished this one up for me:

Not bad, huh?  It's not every day that you get an opportunity to add an authentic 1933 Sport Kings card to your collection!  This multi-sport set is legendary among pre-war collectors, and in looking at the star-packed checklist and colorful design it's easy to see why.

I'd never be crazy enough to take a crack at it, after all the first two cards on the checklist are Ty Cobb and Babe Ruth.  Not gonna happen.  I did decide years ago though that I'd love to collect all four hockey subjects that are represented within the 48-card checklist.

Ace Bailey here was the last one I needed to complete the quartet!  I'd been searching out a copy for years, however it wasn't easy.  I wanted a graded copy for the sake of authenticity.  These aren't easy cards to come across period, and to make matters worse my OCD specifically dictated that I snag a copy graded a PSA 4, since that was the grade assigned to each of the three I already had in hand.  Recently things came together as I had a little extra hobby cash and the above gem triggered my saved eBay search that's been setup for years.  A bit of back-and-forth haggling and alas, "Ace" was mine!

Here's a closer look at the front.  A simple design, but beautiful in my opinion.  Especially when you consider that these were printed up 85 years ago now.  Still looks bright and vibrant to me!

For those who don't know or aren't hockey fans, Ace (real name Irvine) was a star right wing with the Maple Leafs from the mid-'20s through 1933, when his career (and nearly life) was ended prematurely in an on-ice incident.  Bailey was checked from behind by Bruins defenseman Eddie Shore and cracked his skull open on the ice.  While he eventually recovered, he never played professional hockey again.

Bailey's number was actually the first to be retired in all of professional sports, which is kind of cool.  He was elected to the Hockey HOF in 1975, and lived to the ripe old age of 88 before passing away in 1992.

So yeah, there's my newest big win on the hockey card front.  Feels incredible to harpoon this white whale at long last and call this one complete!

For those of you who haven't been following my blog long or who maybe missed the original posts, here's a look at my complete four-card hockey subset from 1933 Sport Kings:

Two of the four stand out to me above the others, and Eddie Shore here is the first.  This is my one and only "playing era" Shore card, and I'm just as in love with it now as I was when I first acquired it nearly five years ago.  Eddie here was the third card I acquired, which means my search for the Bailey lasted that same five years.  No wonder it felt so good reeling that one in.

Here's the other one I'm enamored with, my only "playing era" Howie Morenz card.  Like with the Shore, I just smile every time I look at this one.  I could never acquire another card of either of these players and still be perfectly content with these two.  I consider both of these absolute cornerstones to my hockey collection, and would never part with either save for the direst of circumstances.

The other two cards, while not quite holding the same allure as the Shore and Morenz, are nothing to scoff at either.  Ace Bailey, who was the focus of today's post...

...and "Ching" Johnson, HOF defenseman for the New York Rangers/Americans franchise.

Well, that's about it.  Again, feels great to knock this admittedly small project off the list after all this time searching and waiting.  Thanks for stopping by, and I'll try to share the other big, recent project completion on here in the coming weeks.  That one involves a lot more scanning and cropping than this four-card post did!


Angus said...

That is a beautiful project to finish. Congrats!

Chris said...

wow...fantastic cards, man! Congrats on completing the hockey portion of the set! That's a nice mid-grade, too. And I'd be the same way with my sports card OCD - they've got to have the same grade, from the same grading company.

Mark Hoyle said...

Great accomplishment Shane. Ace Bailey and Eddie Shore. Great cards.

Marc said...

Wow! Absolutely fantastic. What a wonderful idea.

Johnnys Trading Spot said...

Congratulations on the accomplishment!

Fuji said...

Congratulations! Sport Kings is one of my favorite vintage sets. Love how all four cards are PSA 4. I find myself doing that with my 70's Topps cards. I like them in PSA 8 grade.

Billy Kingsley said...

Whoa, very impressive! I just tracked down a card from this set in January,but it's not from hockey or basketball...and it looks like it went through a washing machine...these are fantastic!

Kin said...

Fantastic pickup...congrats!

Matt said...


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