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Thursday, December 26, 2019

Lost Rookies: 1984-85 OPC Claude Loiselle

  Claude Loiselle was a feisty competitor who played 616 career games over 13 seasons.  He was drafted by the Detroit Red Wings 23rd overall in the 1981 NHL Entry Draft.  Loiselle scored a powerplay goal in his first career game, besting Mike Liut of the St. Louis Blues on February 7th, 1982.  Claude spent the majority of his first two seasons playing in junior while sporadically playing with Red Wings.  Loiselle netted 88 points in 46 games in his last season in the juniors.
  Loiselle split the 1983-84 season between the NHL and AHL.  He also was suspended six games for slashing Bobby Clarke in the head.  Loiselle continued to bounce between the Detroit Red Wings of the NHL and the Adirondack Red Wings of the AHL for the remainder of his time as a Red Wing.
  The Red Wings traded Loiselle to the New Jersey Devils in the 1986 offseason.  Loiselle stuck with the Devils and responded with a career high of 40 points.  He scored 96 points over 216 games during three seasons with the Devils.  Although this was not enough for Loiselle to get onto cardboard.  It took the junk wax boom of 1990 and a season in Quebec before Loiselle garnered a bevy of rookie cards.
  The following season at the trade deadline, the Quebec Nordiques put Loiselle on waivers, and then traded him to the Calgary Flames for a prospect.  Except, before the trade went through, multiple teams, including the Toronto Maple Leafs, had placed a claim on Loiselle.  Loiselle had already landed in Calgary when he learned of the NHL voiding the trade and of becoming a Maple Leaf.  This tidbit actually made the back of Loiselle's 91-92 Score card.  The prospect in the original deal, Bryan Deasley, would later be traded to the Nordiques for future considerations, but never made it to the NHL.
  The Leafs traded Claude to the New York Islanders the following season and he took part in the Islanders Cinderella play-off run, including the game seven overtime victory over the heavily favourite Pittsburgh Penguins.  Loiselle's career was cut short the next season by a knee injury suffered against the Dallas Stars.
  Since Loiselle never had a card as a New Jersey Devil, I drafted up a pair since I the 87-88 and 88-89 sets were the first two OPC sets I collected seriously as a child.  So I enjoy making cards for those sets.

1987-88 OPC Claude Loiselle

1988-89 OPC Claude Loiselle

  Although for the Loiselle's Lost Rookie, let's go back to 1984-85.  I choose this season since it would match with Loiselle's jersey number 21 in the picture.  Also the 84-85 set is classic.

1984-85 OPC #405 Claude Loiselle (RC)

1984-85 OPC #405 Claude Loiselle (RC)

  And the last footnote, several years ago I received a TTM return from Mr. Loiselle.

Sunday, December 22, 2019

The Lost Bossys: Baseball Edition Pt 2

  The baseballification Mike Bossy's career in cards continues.  By this time, the Islanders Dynasty was in full swing and Bossy had solidified his place as the NHL's top sniper, who is not named Gretzky.
  The 1981 card was a bit of a pain since I had to swap out a baseball cap for a hockey helmet.  The 82 and 83 were fairly simply.  I switch to making them Topps cards since the Topps logo looks a lot better than the OPC in these sets.  I always loved the 1984 set but I couldn't find the right font for the team name so I actually cut and pasted each letter off other 1984 Topps cards, but then had to get them all the same colour.  Not the way I like to do it but the best font I could find would have cost $40.  I like making these cards but I am not up for buying fonts.
  Three more to go.

1981 OPC Mike Bossy

1982 Topps Mike Bossy

1983 Topps Mike Bossy

1984 Topps Mike Bossy

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Lost Cards: 1987-88 OPC Ric Seiling

  Ric Seiling was a solid two-way forward for the Buffalo Sabres for almost a decade before playing a single season for the Detroit Red Wings.
  Seiling scored 110 points for the St. Catherines Fincups of the OHMJL in 1976-77.  The junior team was selected to represent Canada in the 1977 World Hockey Junior Championship.  This was back when the team Canada sent to the World Juniors was an actual team from the junior leagues, plus a few ringers.  The team also added several other OHMJL stars.  Team Canada won a Silver medal, after losing to the Soviet Union in their final game.  Seiling was drafted 14th overall by the Buffalo Sabres in the 1977 NHL Amateur Draft.  The next player selected was Mike Bossy.
  Seiling made the Sabres out of training camp and scored his first career goal, a game winner, against Michel Laroque of the Montreal Canadiens in a 4-0 victory on October 30, 1977.  Seling set career highs in points, 60, in 79-80 and goals, 30, in 80-81.  He was on pace to set new career highs in goals and points during the 1981-82 season.  Through 51 games, Seiling had 22 goals and 44 points.  He was on pace for 34 goals and 68 points.  On January 30th, 1982, Seiling was hit in the left eye by Phil Russell's stick.  The injury left Seiling with limited vision in his left eye and threaten his career.  After returning from the injury, Seiling's offence dipped.  His point total decline to 41, 35, 31, 25 and then 11 in five consecutive seasons.  Seiling also began wearing a visor, becoming one of the few players to do so in 1982.
  Seiling's role on the team declined and during the 1986 training camp, he was sold to the Detroit Red Wings.  OPC was quick to catch on and gave Seiling the airbursh treatment for the 86-87 set.  I gave it a quick fix, sending him back to the Sabres, as per the 85-86 season.

1986-87 OPC Ric Seiling

  Seiling scored a career low 11 points in 74 games during his lone season with the Red Wings.  The following season, 87-88, Seiling was sent down to the Adirondack Red Wings of the AHL and performed as a player-coach.  It was his last season as a professional.  His airbrush job in the 86-87 set was his final card.  I created a career capping Lost Card for Seiling, giving him an action shot.

1987-88 OPC #271 Ric Seiling

1987-88 OPC #271 Ric Seilng

Sunday, December 15, 2019

The Lost Mike Bossys: Baseball Edition Pt. 1

  What if Topps/OPC used their baseball designs for hockey?  I am not sure but it does give me an excuse to make some more cards of my favourite player, Mike Bossy.  I have the first three done, but hockeyizing the 1981 Topps gave some frustration switching the baseball cap into a hockey helmet that could have a position and team name on it.  So for now, just three Bossy on baseball designs.

1978 Topps Mike Bossy

1979 Topps Mike Bossy

1980 Topps Mike Bossy

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Lost Cards: 1990-91 OPC Robert Picard

  Robert Picard  had a bright start to his NHL career but eventually settled into a second pairing defenceman.  Picard, a highly touted prospect, won the Emile Bouchard trophy in 1977 as the QMJHL best defenceman of the year.  He had 92 points and 267 PIM in 70 games.  The Washington Capitals selected him 3rd overall in the 1977 NHL Amateur draft.
  Picard grew up, and played his junior hockey in Montreal and thus was an avid fan of the Montreal Canadiens.  The Capitals were able to secure his NHL rights before the Montreal Canadiens had a chance to select Picard.  Although there was one other possibility.  The WHA was still around and kicking, and there was a chance the Quebec Nordiques could draft and sign Picard.  The WHA held its draft a week after the NHL had theirs.  The Capitals signed Picard to a contract on the same day they drafted him.  This was not enough to scare the Nordiques away, as the Nordiques drafted Picard 37th overall in the WHA draft and then also signed Picard to a contract.  Picard was now under contract to the Capitals in the NHL and the Nordiques in the WHA.
  The Nordiques offer was about $50,000 more and they also had homefield, or provincial, advantage over the Capitals.  Picard was adamant about playing in Quebec and even stated "I would rather deliver pizzas in Quebec" than play for Washington.  The contract with the Quebec Nordiques was ruled void by WHA president Howard Baldwin, based on a 1974 agreement between the leagues that the WHA would not sign players under NHL contracts.  Picard reluctantly joined the Washington Capitals in time for the 1977 training camp.  As fate would have it, the Capitals visited the Quebec Nordiques for a cross-league exhibition on October 12, 1977.  During the game, a pizza was thrown on the ice.  No word if Picard delivered the pizza off the ice.
  Picard scored 37 points in his rookie season and then followed it up with a career best 21 goals and 65 points.  The next season his totals took a slight dip to 11 goals and 54 points.  He also set a career high of 122 PIM, which is surprising since his NHL career high was less than half of his QMJHL career low in PIM, 267.  The Capitals sold high on Picard in the 1980 offseason and dealt Picard in a package deal to the Toronto Maple Leafs for goalie Mike Palmateer.  OPC caught wind of the trade and Picard got the airbrush treatment for the 80-81 set.  Since it was Picard's only card as a Leaf, I decided to give Picard a proper card as a Leaf.

1980-81 OPC Robert Picard

  Picard was selected to play in the 1981 All-Star game as the lone representative for the Leafs.  I found this very strange since the Leafs also had defencemen Borje Salming and Ian Turnbull, and neither were injured at the time of the All-Star game.  Picard had 25 points and a -32 by the all-star break compared to Salming's  58pts and +3, and Turnbull's 53pts and -7.  Why Salming or Turnbull didn't play instead is beyond me.  Picard would not return to Toronto as he was traded on the day of the All-Star game to the Montreal Canadiens for goalie Michel Laroque.
 Picard was finally a Montreal Canadien.  Unfortunately, it was not the homecoming Picard had hoped for.  The Canadiens entered the play-offs as the number three overall seed, but were swept by the coming-of-age Wayne Gretzky and Edmonton Oilers in the first round.  Picard had 72 points in 141 games over parts of four season with the Canadiens.  A month into the 1983-84 season, Picard was dealt to the Winnipeg Jets for a third round pick in the 1984 draft.  It is arguable the most important trade of the decade for the Canadiens.  They use the 3rd round pick to draft future HHOFer Patrick Roy.
  Picard played about two seasons with the Jets, scoring 12 goals in 84-85, it was his first time reaching double digits since 1980.  The following season he was dealt again, this time to the Quebec Nordiques.  The trade seemed to jump start Picard, as he collected 34pts in 48 games after the trade.  No reports of pizza this time.  He led the team in defenceman scoring even though he barely played half the season with the team.  Quebed won the Adams division but were promptly swept in the first round.  Picard spent three more full seasons with the Nordiques, scoring 28, 16, and 21 points.
  In his final season, Picard was traded mid-season once again, this time to the Detroit Red Wings.  Including his stats with Quebec, he finished the season with 0 goals and 8 assists in 44 games.  Even with the junk wax explosion of 1990, Robert Picard was absent from cardboard.  The Red Wings designated Picard to the minors at the end of training camp, instead Picard retired.
  Picard came out of junior as a top prospect who could score and fight.  Early in his career he did some scoring but never show the same truculence as he did in junior.  He had 1282 PIM in 282 games in the QMJHL, or 4.54 PIM per game.  In the NHL, he average 1.14 for his career and had a career high of 1.71 PIM per game with the Canadiens in 81-82.  It is interesting how he left that part of his game in junior and never returned to it during his career in the NHL, even after it was evident he would not be a top offensive defenceman.
  Picard's last card was part of the 1989-90 OPC set.  He never had a card as a Red Wing.  So here is the Lost Card of Robert Picard.

1990-91 OPC #529 Robert Picard
1990-91 OPC #529 Robert Picard

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Lost Rookies: 1985-86 OPC Mats Thelin

  Mats Thelin was a star defenceman in Sweden before making the move to play in the NHL.  The Boston Bruins drafted Thelin in the 7th round in 1981.  Thelin continued to play in Sweden until 1984.  Sweden had a big year in International hockey in 1984.  They won a bronze medal at the Olympics in Yugosalvia, and then shockingly won the silver medal at the Canada Cup.  Thelin had 4pts in 8 games during the Canada Cup.
  Thelin, 23 years old, stayed in North America after the Canada Cup and joined the Boston Bruins.  He set career highs in his rookie season with 18pts in 73 games.  He suffered through numerous lower body injuries during his short NHL career.  He missed games due to foot, knee and groin injuries.  Over the next two seasons, he played in 90 games our of 160.  He finished both the 85-86 and 86-87 seasons on the injured reserve.  After the 86-87 season, Thelin returned to Sweden to play professionally.  He retired from professional hockey in 1994.
  Thelin was a suggestion from reader Mike.  Thelin never had a NHL card.  He never made the 85-86 set and injuries limited him from making any subsequent sets.  So behold, the Lost Rookie of Mats Thelin.

1985-86 OPC #275 Mats Thelin (RC)

1985-86 OPC #275 Mats Thelin (RC)

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Lost Rookies: 1984-85 OPC Ken Daneyko

  Ken Daneyko is not the typical player I would feature on a Lost Rookies post.  While it did take OPC six seasons before they included him in a set, Daneyko played 20 seasons in the NHL, all with the New Jersey Devils.  So there are plenty of card of Daneyko in a  Devils uniform around, although his 1989-90 OPC rookie was a dreaded warm-up shot.
  The early pictures of a baby-faced Ken Daneyko quite surprised me.  For some reason, I always assumed Ken Daneyko was born as a balding stubbly grizzled faced middle-aged man.  It was also a suggestion made by gregory, who also runs a blog that features quite a bit of hockey.  So with that motivation, here we go with the Lost Rookie of Ken Daneyko.
  One of the interesting things about Daneyko is that he started with the club in the Mickey Mouse years and lasted until the Devils were 3x Stanley Cup champs.  Daneyko was the epitome of the crease-clearer defenceman.  In 20 seasons, Daneyko scored 36 goals, 178 points, and had 2516 PIM in 1283 games played.  Daneyko once went 256 regular season games without scoring a goal (1999-2002).  He is the Devils/Rockies/Scouts franchise career leader in games played and PIM.
  As for that interesting bit mentioned above, Daneyko was injured about two weeks before the "Mickey Mouse" game against the Oilers in 1983.  His injury cost him the majority of the 1983-84 season, including any chance of returning to the Devils that season.  He only played one game with the Devils in 1984-85.  So he somewhat missed the Mickey Mouse era.
  Daneyko's final NHL game was the game 7 victory in the 2003 Stanley Cup finals over the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.  Earlier in the play-offs, he had suffered a rib injury, which caused him to miss 10 of the Devils final 14 play-off games, including the first six games of the Finals.  Prior to the injury, Daneyko had played in all 165 Scout/Rockies/Devils franchise play-off games.  He returned to play his final NHL game in game 7, a 3-0 victory, for the Devils third Stanley Cup in 10 seasons.
  Daneyko won the Bill Masterson trophy in 2001 for Perseverance.  Daneyko had troubles with alcohol which culminated during the 1997-98 season.  He was granted a leave of absence while he checked into rehab.  He beat his demons and would go on to help the Devils to win Cups in 2000 and 2003.
  It's incredible to think a player could spend 20 seasons with the same franchise in the free agent era, especially when that player isn't a HHOF calibre player.  It shows quite a bit of loyalty by the Devils and by Daneyko.

1984-85 OPC #404 Ken Daneyko (RC)

1984-85 OPC #404 Ken Daneyko (RC)

I also found this picture of Ken Daneyko.  This is exactly how I pictured a baby faced Ken Daneyko.   An angry face full of stubble.  This was how I assumed Daneyko looked on the day he was born, except he would be missing his two front teeth. 

1987-88 OPC Ken Daneyko

Friday, November 22, 2019

Lost Cards: 1988-89 OPC Wilf Paiement

  Drafted 2nd overall in the 1974 draft by the expansion team, the Kansas City Scouts, Wilf Paiement entered the league with high expectations and retired as the second best player to wear the number 99 in NHL history.
  Paiement had 82 points in 135 games over two seasons with the atrocious Scouts.  The NHL had doubled in size in 1966, from 6 to 12 teams, and added another six between 1970 and 1974, then include the WHA's vying for talent and the talent pool was quite diluted for the Scouts.  The Scouts performed as bad at the box office as they did on the ice.  The Scouts only lasted two seasons in Kansas before moving to Colorado, becoming the Rockies.

1974-75 OPC Wilf Paiement (Variant)
  While the Rockies continued to perform poorly on the ice, Paiement led the team in scoring for three straight seasons, amassing 228 points in 223 games.  During this time, Paiement earned the reputation as a dirty player, due in part to his antics at the 1977 World Hockey Championship for Canada.  Then at the start of the 1978 season, Paiement solidified that reputation with a stick swinging incident against Dennis Polonich.  Paiement was suspended for 15 games.  At the time, it was the second longest suspension in NHL history for an on-ice incident.  Polonich would later sue Paiement over the incident, and be awarded $850k.  Paiement finished the season as the Rockies leading scorer, netting 60 points in 65 games.
  Paiement was traded to the Toronto Maples Leafs in the infamous Lanny McDonald fiasco.  Wilf already had big shoes to fill by replacing McDonald, but then also switched to jersey number 99.  He is only one of three players to ever wear the number 99 in the NHL.  Wilf originally lived up to expectations as he led the Leafs in scoring, while setting a career high, with 97 points in 1980-81.  The following season, Paiement, and the Leafs, struggled.  With the Leafs being 10 points out of a play-off spot at the trade deadline, and Paiement only netting 58 points in 69 games, the Leafs traded Paiement to the Qubec Nordiques for Miroslav Frycer.
  Paiement chose a new jersey number, and finished the season strong, scoring 13pts in 8 games for the Nords and added 12 more points in 14 play-off games.  Paiement played in a support role for the Nordiques, whom already had future HHOFers Peter Stastny and Michel Goulet.  Paiement had 223 points and 680 PIM in 280 games with Quebec.  The team made the Wales Conference Final twice during Paiement's time, losing both times, in 1982 and 1985.
  Paiement struggled with Quebec during the 1985-86 season and was traded to the New York Rangers.  Paiement was part of the Ranger's cindarella play-off run.  The Rangers, who barely made the play-offs, upset the top two teams in the Wales Conference before losing to the Patrick Roy and the Montreal Canadiens.
  Wilf was left unprotected in the 1986 waiver draft and was selected by the Buffalo Sabres.  He scored 20 goals in 57 games for the Sabres.  Paiement signed as a free agent with the Pittsburgh Penguins the following offseason, resulting in OPC airbrushing him into the set.  Paiement played more games in the minors than with the Penguins in 1987-88 and retired at the end of the season.
  Paiement was a tough, although sometimes dirty, player.  Over his career, he had 16 Gordie Howe Hat Tricks, just two shy of Rick Tocchet's record.  Paiement  retired with 356 goals, 1759 PIM in 946 career games.  A very good player, who had the right mix of offense and truculence for the era he played in.
  Paiement was a victim of the OPC cutbacks as he was left out of the 1985 and 1986 sets.  He never had a card produced of him as a New York Ranger, nor as a Buffalo Sabre.  I could not find reasonable pictures of Wilf as a Ranger or Sabre.  I would be grateful if anyone could steer me towards one.  Although I am able to present a career capper for Wilf as a 1988-89 OPC Lost Card.

1988-89 OPC #270 Wilf Paiement

1988-89 OPC #270 Wilf Paiement

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

1988-89 OPC Don Cherry

  Sad news that Don Cherry, a polarizing tv personality, has been let go of his long-time gig, The Coach's Corner, on Hockey Night in Canada.  Don's Coach's Corner was a Saturday night fixture on Canadian TVs on since 1986.  While considering today's change in sensitivity, it was only a matter of time before Cherry shared a opinion outside of Hockey that would get him canned.  It seems his relevancy has been increasingly questioned over the past decade.  Although it was his willingness to be controversial that made him relevant compared to the other analysts the networks used.  It was like discussing hockey with a friend.  More feelings than analysis, warts and all.
  I have mixed feelings over what he said and I won't delve into that situation.  Cherry wore his heart on his sleeve, was unapologetic, and a proud Canadian.  While I certainty didn't always agree with what he said, about hockey or other issues, I feel the moral discords he has caused over the years were beneficial to get people talking.  I am fairly certain that there is already a greater awareness, by all, of the sacrifices Soldiers have made and there will be more poppies worn next year.

  On a side note, I have been in the process of moving.  I am beginning to settle in and plan on being back to weekly Lost Cards posts next week.

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Lost Cards: 1986-87 OPC Jimmy Mann

  I am not sure why, but for some reason I equate Jimmy Mann to being the ultimate draft bust.  Mann was the first player ever selected by the Winnipeg Jets in a NHL Entry draft.  The Jets joined the NHL after the WHA folded, and lost many of their stars to NHL teams, who had owned their NHL rights.  The Jets got to restock via an expansion draft but Jets and the other ex-WHA teams were shuffled to the end of the draft order for the NHL Entry Draft.  The Jets got the 19th overall pick in the 1979 draft and selected Jimmy Mann of the QMJHL's Sherbrooke Canadiens.
  It's odd that I considered a player selected 19th overall, who played over 200 career games, the ultimate draft bust.  It's true that the next two players selected were Michel Goulet and Kevin Lowe.  It's true that Mann's 30 career points is about 130 less than the second lowest total of players drafted in the first round.  It's true that Mann is only one of two players selected in the first round that played less than 590 career games.  Although it's also true there are many players in other drafts years selected higher than 19th overall whom never played a single game in the NHL.  So I really have no idea how I equated Jimmy Mann as the ultimate draft bust.  It's a notion that formed as a child and I can't remember why.
  Mann put up some decent numbers in junior to backup his high draft position.  He had back-to-back 80+ points and 260 PIM with the Sherbrooke Castors.  He was a QMJHL First Team All-star in 1979 and had 14 goals and 26 points in 12 play-off games.
  Mann joined the Jets for the 1979-80 season.  He scored his first career goal against Curt Ridley of the Vancouver Canucks.  It was a powerplay goal and the game winner in a 5-3 victory.  It was the last time he scored a powerplay or game-wining goal in his career.  Mann led the NHL in PIM, 287, during his rookie season.  Mann had career highs across the board in his rookie season with 3 goals, 5 assists, 8 points, and 287 PIM in 72 games played.  In his second season, Mann led the Jets in PIM, 105, while playing in 37 games.
  Mann would become infamous in 1982.  On January 13, 1982, Mann sucker punched Paul Gardner.  Gardner missed 21 games due to a broken jaw.  Mann was suspended 10 games and charged, and convicted of assault.  At the time, it was one the sixth longest suspension in NHL History.  Gardner had earlier cross-checked the Jets Doug Smail in the face.  In retaliation, Jets coach, Tom Watt, send Jimmy Mann over the boards to send Gardner a message.
  Mann's reputation was tarnished as he had gone from prospect to enforcer to goon.  Mann spent another season and a half with Jets, scoring one goal, 2 assists and 134 PIM in 68 games after the incident.  He was sent down to the minors in November of 1983 and stayed there until he was traded to the Quebec Nordiques for a 5th round draft pick.  Mann would be used sparingly with the Nordiques.  Although part of the team, he was not dressed during the infamous Good Friday brawl between the Nordiques and Canadiens in the second round of the 1984 play-offs.
  Mann suffered a serious abdominal injury in December of 1984.  He returned to the team late in the season but the injury nagged him for the next few seasons and was severe enough for him to miss the entire 86-87.  Mann signed as free agent with the Pittsburgh Penguins for the 87-88 season.  It was an injury plagued season as Mann missed time due to elbow and groin injuries.  He accumulated 53 PIM in 9 games the Penguins and also 61 PIM in 10 games in the minors.  After spending the 88-89 season in the minors, Mann retired.
  Certainly looking back, Mann did not live up to his potential but I also feel he doesn't live up to my labeling him as the ultimate Draft Bust.  There are some top 10 picks who never played a NHL game and plenty of top 5 picks never played a full season.
  Mann's career in cards turned out to be a bust.  After getting cards in his first two seasons, the 80-81 and 81-82 set, Mann disappeared from OPC.  Mann took notice of this and actually blamed Alan Eagleson, NHLPA head and agent for Paul Gardner, for blackballing him from the hockey sets.  The story is also covered in Hockey Card Stories.  I agree that Mann was not cardboard worthy after the 81-82 release, but that's where I come in.  I couldn't find a decent picture of Mann as a Penguins so his Lost Card will be him as a Nordique.

1986-87 OPC #275 Jimmy Mann

1986-87 OPC #275 Jimmy Mann

  Update 12/15/19:  Bonus Mann
1982-83 OPC Jimmy Mann

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Lost Rookies: 1984-85 OPC Dave Richter

  At 6'5" and 220lbs, Dave Richter was a big man.  He was the classic clear the front of the net defender.  He was on the ice for his truculence and to stick up for his teammates, not speed or offense.  He played 365 games over 9 seasons but only got a single NHL card.
  Drafted by the Minnesota North Stars in the 10th round, 205th overall, only 5 players were drafted after Dave in the 1980 draft.  Dave graduated from Michigan University and made his NHL debut on March 13, 1982 against the St. Louis Blues.  He spent the majority of the 82-83 season in the minors but became a semi-regular with the North Stars in 1983-84. On December 12, 1983, he scored his first career NHL goal against Glen Hanlon (a previous Lost Card recipient) of the New York Rangers in a 6-4 loss.  Richter finished the season with 2 goals, 5 points, and 132 PIM in 42 games.  Richter had another semi-regular season with the North Stars, playing in 55 games, netting 10 points and was second on the team with 221 PIM.
  Ritcher, who misses games every season due to minor injuries, started the season injured but finally became a regular with the North Stars until he was traded to the Philadelphia Flyers at the end of November, 1985.  The trade brought Todd Bergen to the North Stars, who was covered in a previous Lost Rookies.  Richter's style seemed like a perfect match for the Flyers, as he become the resident tough guy on defence.  Instead, his time with the Flyers was short.  Richter had 2 assists, and 138 PIM in 50 games.  The Flyers were the top team in Wales conference, 110pts, but were upset by the New York Rangers, 78pts, in the first round of the play-offs.  Richter was traded to the Vancouver Canucks in the off-season.
  Richter had a career year with the Canucks in 86-87, setting career highs in games, 78, assists, 15, and points, 17, while tying a career high in goals with two.  He also let loose on offensive by setting a career high with 35 shots, including a four shot outburst against the New York Rangers.  OPC took notice of the burly dman accomplishments and bestowed a rookie card upon Richter.
  Richter returned to earth the next season with 6 points in 49 games.  He did set a career high in PIM, with 224.  His season was cut short when he was suspended 10 games for leaving the penalty box to join a fight.  After getting into a fight earlier in the period, Richter was still in the box when the period ended with a skirmish breaking out in the Islanders end.  Richter joined the fray, instead of staying in the box or headed to his team's bench.  Richter got into a fight, got suspended and then got traded in the off-season.
  Richter was traded to the St. Louis Blues for defenceman Robert Nordmark and a 2nd round draft pick in the 1990 draft, which seems a lot to trade for a third pairing defenceman. Although the Blues were desperate to toughen up.  The 1990 draft pick later went back to the Blues in a multi-player trade that sent the Blues 1991 2nd round draft pick to the Canucks.  So they basically traded the Blues back their 1990 2nd rounder for the Blues 1991 2nd rounder.  The Canucks then traded the 1991 second round pick to the Montreal Canadiens for Jyrki Lumme.  So the Canucks basically traded Richter for Nordmark, and Lumme.   It's amazing how much, and the many ways, the Blues contributed to the Canucks 1994 Stanley Cup run.

1989-90 OPC Dave Richter
  Richter Played a season and two games for the Blues.  He made his final NHL appearance in the 1989-90 season and retired after spending 1990-91 in the minors.  He never had a card made of him during the 1990 junk wax boom.
  To rectify an OPC omissions of the Dave Richter, I mocked up this 1984-85 OPC Dave Richter Lost Rookie card.  I also made a 89-90 OPC card of Richter as a Blue above.  I couldn't find any reasonable Flyers pictures of Richter, so I wasn't able to add a Flyers card as well.

1984-85 OPC #403 Dave Richter

1984-85 OPC #403 Dave Richter

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Lost Cards: 1986-87 OPC Lucien Deblois

  Lucien Deblois has a fun name to say.  At least it was when I was a kid, and when I say it out loud today as an adult, yeah, it's still a fun name.  Deblois finished his career 7 games shy of 1000.  He had 552 points over 15 seasons.
  Deblios was drafted in the first round in both the WHA and NHL drafts in 1977.  He was selected 8th overall by the New York Rangers in the NHL and 9th overall by the Quebec Nordiques in the WHA.  Deblois chose the NHL and began the season wit the Rangers.  He scored his first NHL goal against Doug Favell of the Colorado Rockies, November 2nd, 1977.  Deblois would go on to be a Cy Young award finalist scoring 22 goals and 8 assists.  This effort was also enough to garner Deblois with a rookie card in the 1977-78 set.
  Deblois, along with four other players, were traded by the Rangers early in the 1979-80 season in a deal with the Colorado Rockies for Barry Beck.  After two more 20 goal seasons, three in his first four seasons, Deblois was traded to the Winnipeg Jets for Brent Ashton.
  Lucien had a pair of 50 points seasons before a career year in 1983-84, setting career highs across the board with 34 goals, 45 assists and 79 points.  The following offseason, Deblois and the Jets had a contract dispute which led to his trade to the Montreal Canadiens for Perry Turnbull.  Deblois was never able to find his scoring touch in Montreal, netting 54 points in 112 games over two seasons.  He did win a Stanley Cup in 1986, but after netting 0 points, and a -4 in 11 games, Deblois never played a minute in the Finals.
  By this time Deblois was more of a depth piece as he began a journeyman's journey by signing up for a second tour of duty with the New York Rangers.  Three years, 184 games and 74 points later, Deblois returned to La Belle Province of Quebec, this time signing as a free agent with the Quebec Nordiques.
  Deblois played a role in the Eric Lindros sweepstakes in 1991.  The Toronto Maple Leafs had infamously traded away their 1991 1st round pick to the New jersey Devils for Tom Kurvers the previous season, assuming their fortunes were going nowhere but up; turns out they were quite wrong.  20 games into the season, the Leafs and the Nordiques were the two worst teams in the league, so a deal was worked out to benefit both clubs.  The Leafs traded a prospect and draft picks to the Nordiques for three veterans, including Deblois.  The trade solidified the Nordiques tank job, finishing last overall, and the Leafs improved to 2nd last overall and saved themselves the embarrassment of trading away the golden ticket in the Lindros sweepstakes.  Instead the New Jersey Devils were stuck with selecting future HHOFer Scott Niedermayer.
  Deblois was traded from the Leafs during the following season, 1991-92, to the Winnipeg Jets.  Deblois retired at the end of the season, with the franchise he had the most personal success with.
  OPC seemed to forget about Deblois after his trade to the Montreal Canadiens.  He did get a horrific airbursh job for the 1984-85 set but didn't reappear until in a card until the 1990 junk wax boom.  So before getting to his "official" Lost Card, I thought I would throw in a 1988-89 OPC of Lucien during his second stint as a NY Ranger.

1988-89 OPC Lucien DeBlois

  And here is the Deblois Lost Card, a 1986-87 OPC while he was a member of the Stanley Cup Champions, the Montreal Canadiens.  Bon Appetit.

1986-87 OPC #274 Lucien Deblois

1986-87 OPC #274 Lucien Deblois

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Lost Rookies: 1985-86 OPC Todd Bergen

  Todd Bergen burst onto the scene with the Philadelphia Flyers in 1985, but a combination of an abdominal injury, and a combustible relationship with head coach Mike Keenan, had Bergen out of the league by the following season.
  After going undrafted in 1981, Bergen was drafted in the 5th round, 98th overall, by the Philadelphia Flyers.  Bergen's tier 2 junior team, the Prince Albert Raiders, had won the Centennial Cup two seasons in a row and was promoted to the WHL as an expansion team for the 1982-83 season.  Bergen broke out in the 83-84 season, scoring 57 goals in 43 games for the Raiders.  He started the following season with the Hershey bears of the AHL.  After scoring 39 points in 38 games, the Flyers called Bergen up.
  In Bergen's first career game, January 8, 1985, he scored two goals, including the game winner.  The following game, he injured his abdominal muscles and missed the next 25 games.  Upon his return on March 10th, Bergen had a goal and two assists in a 11-4 victory against the Pittsburgh Penguins.  Bergen finished the season with 11 goals and 5 assists in 14 games.  Bergen started the play-offs hot, netting 10 points in his first 7 games, but cooled off dramatically, with only 3 points in his final 10 games.  
  Bergen refused to report to the Flyers 1986 training camp and was suspended from the team.  Originally the story was Bergen refused to report due to personal reasons and planned on retiring to play professional golf.  Rumours swirled about that Bergen wanted a better contract and refused to play for Flyers coach Mike Keenan.  In November of 1985, Bergen was traded in a four player trade to the Minnesota North Stars.  Upon being traded, Bergen told reporters he left the Flyers due to refusing to play for Mike Keenan.  Bergen was upset at the way Keenan treated him in the press, his usage under Keenan, and also how the team, particularly Keenan, treated his injury, as if he was faking it.
  Bergen's injury trouble followed him to Minnesota.  He showed up in Minnesota with a pulled abdominal muscles and wouldn't accept convention treatment.  He missed the entire 85-86 season and a large part of the 86-87 season.  Bergen played in the AHL in 86-87, scoring 23 points in 27 games with the Springfield Indians of the IHL.
  Bergen once again refused to report a training camp, as he held out of the North Stars camp in 1987.   Bergen claimed he was owed $130k backpay.  The North Stars claimed the Flyers owed it.  Before a ruling was held, Bergen decided to retire for good from professional hockey and once again try professional golf.  I can't find any results on his golf career.
  Bergen was quoted in The Hockey in 2004 as claiming "I didn't disappear, I got disappeared."  While Bergen was a very gifted player, and also 6'2', many questioned his desire to play and decisions he made during his short NHL career. As such, he never had a NHL card, or even a team issued card.  If OPC was aggressive as today's card companies, this is what a Todd Bergen rookie card may have looked like.

1985-86 OPC #274 Todd Bergen (RC)

1985-86 OPC #274 Todd Bergen (RC)

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Fan Requests 2: Mike Bossy 50 in 50

  Bossman22 suggested I do something to spotlight Mike Bossy's record tying 50 goals in 50 games.  Bossy was the second player in NHL history to score 50 goals in 50 games.  The first was Maurice Richard, 36 years earlier in 1944-45.  Only three other players have accomplished the feat since, with Wayne Gretzky smashing the it the next season with 50 goals in 39 games, including 15 in the last five games!
  I did a four card subset for Bossy but struggled with deciding which template to go with.  First, I used the base card and switched the team name to 50 in 50.  I really like the design of the base card.  Although the 1981-82 OPC set had a Record Breakers subset.  So I tried that design as well.  I am a bit torn between the two, so I decided I will post both side-by-side and let you guys be the judge.

1981-82 OPC Mike Bossy 50 in 50

1981-82 OPC Mike Bossy 50 in 50

1981-82 OPC Mike Bossy 50 in 50

1981-82 OPC Mike Bossy 50 in 50

And then I went with a suggestion of using the Super Action subset for the 50th goal.  I cheated on the font for the "SUPER ACTION".  Usually I find the correct, or close enough, font but I wasn't able to match it up with a (free) font from the internet.  So I used the Paint Bucket and then touched up the stray pixels the best my patience could.  Can you find the puck in the picture?  Took me a while.

1981-82 OPC Super Action Mike Bossy

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Lost Rookies: 1984-85 OPC Marty McSorley

  Marty McSorley will most likely be remember for one of three things, being Wayne Gretzky's bodyguard, an illegal stick, or his career-ending slash on Donald Brasheur.
  McSorley was passed over in the 1981 and 1982 NHL drafts, allowing him to sign a contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins as a free agent.  McSorley made his debut on October 8, 1983, and had his first career NHL fight against Tom Laidlaw of the New York Rangers, 3 minutes into the game.  On Januray20th 1984, McSorley scored against Steve Weeks of the New York Rangers for his first career NHL goal.  He finished the season with 2 goals, 9 points and 224 PIM in 74 games.  Marty started the 1984-85 season, the Penguins' Mario Lemieux era, with the club but was sent down after a month.  He finished the season playing 15 games, 0 points and 15 PIM.
  Marty's big break came the following offseason when he was traded as part of a package to the Edmonton Oilers for goalie Gilles Meloche.  Marty joined Dave Semenko and Kevin McClelland as a Wayne Gretzky bodyguard.  On January 2nd, 1986 against the Calgary Flames, McSorley and McClelland combined for a unique Gordie Howe Hat Trick.  They both achieved Gordie Howe Hat Tricks, from the same plays.  McSorley and McClelland had an assist on the other's goal, and then both got fighting majors at the same time during a line brawl.  McSorley spent the next three seasons with the Oilers, wining Stanley Cups in 1987 and 1988.  During his time with the Oilers, McSorley was often employed as a winger.
  When Gretzky was traded to the Los Angeles Kings in August of 1988, his bodyguard, McSorley was part of the package.  McSorley had his best seasons in Los Angeles.  He led the league in +/- in 1990-91 with a +48, and set career highs in goals, 15 in 89-90 and 92-93, and points, 41pts in 92-93.  McSorley had the all-time 5th highest PIM total for a single season in 1992-93, with 399.  Marty assisted on Gretzky's record setting 802nd career goal.  Unfortunately, McSorley's time with the Kings would end on a low note.  With the Kings up one game to none in the series, and also up 2-1 in the game two of the Stanley Cup Finals against the Montreal Canadiens, McSorley was penalized for using an illegal stick.  The penalty was called with less than two minutes left in the game.  Eric Desjardins scored the game tying goal on the powerplay, and then scored the winner in overtime.  The Canadiens swept the rest of series and won the Stanley Cup.
  The Kings traded McSorley in the 1993 offseason to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Shawn MacEachern.  Several months into the season, the same players returned to their teams as part of a four player trade.  McSorley played two seasons with the Kings during his second tour of duty with the team before being traded to the New York Rangers at the 1996 trade deadline.  The following offseason McSorley signed with the San Jose Sharks as a free agent.  Two seasons later, McSorley made his return to Edmonton, again as a free agent.  Marty spent a single season in Edmonton before moving on via free agency to the Boston Bruins.
  On February 21st, 2000, McSorley played his last NHL game.  McSorley and Donald Brashear were regular combatants, having fought against each other six times during their careers.  McSorley and Brashear had a fight in the 1st period of the Bruins and Vancouver Canucks games of February 21st.  McSorley attempted to start another fight with Brashear a few times during the game, but Brashear did not want to fight.  As the game was able to come to an end, a 5-2 loss for the Bruins, McSorley followed Brashear up the ice looking for a fight, as Brashear continued to skate away from McSorley, Marty slashed Brashear on the side of the head.  The slash, combined with his head hitting the ice, knocked Brashear out.  Brashear missed 20 games due to injury, while McSorley was suspended for the remainder of the season, 23 games, and play-offs.
  McSorley was also charged by the RCMP for assault with a weapon.  McSorley claimed he was trying to hit Brashear on the shoulder and not the head.  McSorley was found guily and given a 18 month conditional discharge.  After the trial, the NHL increased McSorley's suspension to a full year, ending on February 21, 2001.  It is the longest suspension for an on-ice incident in NHL history.  The suspension was honoured by the IIHF as McSorley attempted but failed to gain employment overseas in 2000. McSorley joined the Grand Rapids Griffiths of the IHL in February of 2001, and was ejected for fighting in his first game.  Marty retired at the end of the season.
  McSorley was a tough competitor and a good teammate.  He played with three franchises twice, Penguins, Oilers, Kings, showing he was welcomed back by his teams.  Although McSorley has the fourth highest total career PIM in history, 3381, he was more than just a goon.  Unfortunately, McSorley will be best remembered for his illegal stick and slash to Brashear's head.
  Marty's rookie card was part of the 1987-88 OPC set.  His next cards wouldn't be until the 1990 junk wax explosion.  I am not a big fan of the 87-88 picture used for McSorley as it is a warm-up picture, sans helmet.  Although McSorley was also know for his blonde surfer's haircut during his career.  So I did up a quick 86-87 OPC for Marty with an action shot.

1986-87 OPC Marty McSorley
  Back to the main event, McSorley's Lost Rookie.  From the 1984-85 OPC set, McSorley as a rookie during his first tour of duty with the Penguins, with a cameo by long-time NHL linesman, Kevin Collins.  Collins was a NHL Linesman from 1977 to 2004.

1984-85 OPC #402 Marty McSorley (RC)

1984-85 OPC #402 Marty McSorley