Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Cardboard Keepers - My Two Best Hockey Relics

Time for the next installment of Cardboard Keepers, a thought experiment in which I theoretically whittle my entire collection down to just 2,000 cards; 1,000 baseball keepers, and 1,000 "other" keepers.

Today we're going to look at a pair of game-used hockey cards.  I'm one of those collectors who isn't generally all that enthused with relic cards.  When I first got back into collecting in 2007 I thought the concept was neat, and chased a few of them in those early days.  I learned relatively quickly though about the questionable authenticity of some of the cards, and reading the fine print on the back and learning that some were "event-used" was sort of a bummer as well.

I don't mean to paint an overly dire picture of these cards though, because there are some that I truly do enjoy.  On the hockey side of my collection, there are two in particular that stand out above all the others, and today I'll be inducting both into my Cardboard Keepers collection...

Check this baby out!  I learned about these fantastic "Super-sized Pads" relics from In the Game courtesy of another blogger back in 2017.  As soon as I read his post I knew I wanted to acquire one of these for my own collection, and in looking over the checklist Gerry Cheevers was the obvious choice for me.

I love the "brown leather pad" era for goalies in the NHL, and looking at this gigantic slice of Cheevers' pad still makes me smile even a couple of years after landing this card.  This is a relic card done right, of a Stanley Cup Champion, HOFer, and cable TV broadcaster of Hartford Whalers games from my youth!

Here's a look at the back, which importantly notes that this piece of pad is actually game-used.

My other favorite hockey card relic was sent to me by my longtime hobby friend Douglas Corti, and features an absolutely sweet piece of Pat Verbeek's hockey stick!  The "Little Ball of Hate" was one of my brothers' and I's favorite players growing up, and I just thought this card was the coolest thing when I received it totally by surprise.

I even managed to track down a card within my collection that shows the exact model stick that I'm fairly certain the shard on this relic card came from.  If you click for a larger image and zoom in you can see the word Louisville on his stick, and the relic from Douglas contains the letter E at the end, and the copyright mark.

Again, the back confirms that this is game-used, which is how all relic cards should be in my personal opinion.  A really great card there of one of the under-rated 500-goal scorers in league history.

So, there are my two favorite hockey relics, easy selections for my Cardboard Keepers collection.  It's interesting that neither of them comes from a company who had a license to produce NHL hockey cards at the time.  I think Upper Deck could learn a thing or two from the ingenuity shown in this pair of relic cards!

The non-baseball Cardboard Keepers collection is up to 19 cards in size now, and can be viewed here.  I've still got a long way to go, with 981 cards remaining to be selected.  I'll be back soon with the next card or group of cards, but until then thanks as always for stopping by!


Commishbob said...

Cheevers was always my favorite 'enemy' goalie. I just loved his mask. Speaking of the Bruins and Pat Verbeek...check this out.

Brett Alan said...

I like relics, and it's hard to beat two very unique pieces from two New England hockey legends.

Tim B. said...

That's an awesome goalie pad relic! That'd be a keeper for me too.

Fuji said...

Wow. That Cheevers is awesome! Very, very cool card. #superjealous

Matt said...

Those are two of the cooler relics I've seen on any blog!

gregory said...

I'm not much of a relic guy either, but that Cheevers pad is something else. It's almost more of a museum piece than a trading card.

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