For the past several years in the baseball off-season I’ve really taken a liking to watching hockey. The Wild have done well, as have both the men’s and women’s teams in the NCAA ranks. For years, I’ve mainly been a Twins collector…but now I find myself thinking about starting a base collection for the North Stars, Wild, and the 1980 US Men’s Olympic team. I dabble, but haven’t fully committed – and this year’s Upper Deck might push me over into full time collecting hawkey. Here’s a small sample of a retail rack pack I opened:
As you can see there’s some beautiful cards in the set. I’d expect nothing less from Upper Deck, even from their start, their photography has been their trademark. I especially love the Johnathan Drouin and Elias Lindholm. That blurred puck with Drouin chasing, maybe my favorite card of the year so far. I wish more cards were issued from the locker rooms, dugouts, or just candid shots of players interacting with fans. For example, like the Lindholm, the R.J. Umberger and the Kyle Turris. Highlights of the second half include these:
There’s something about goalie poses that make a great card. Action, pose, all the hawkey gear. If only the puck were visible in the Seth Jones card, it might compete with Jonathan Drouin’s base. Fan favorite Brett Burns tossing what looks like a Gatorade or Aquafina bottle to fans? Great candid shot. More of these! Ales Hemsky on his butt, wonder if that’s an embellishment or if there were an actual penalty on the play. Nathan Beaulieu’s stick handling on display in perfectly centered shot is another one of my favorites from this series.
I also pulled one insert, an “UD Canvas” Niklas Kronwall. Very reminiscent of Upper Deck’s Master Pieces, which I absolutely loved. They have a certain vintage feel to them, with a textured ripple that definitely stands out in the pack.
I was very impressed with my rack pack, and would definitely chase more. Even if my Wild were absent in the pack. :(. The photos are beautiful, the design very minimalist, and there’s a good mix of teams, and positions represented. I only pulled one insert, but I was impressed with what I saw. Overall, I’d recommend the set for low end/set collectors and I would and probably will purchase again.
Now playing: Random youtube.
Shoulder: Appointment today with specialist, burning feeling.
Next up: Last week’s/this weekend’s card show.