1.29.2017

1993-94 Upper Deck McDonald's All-Stars

The 62nd National Hockey League All-Star Game festivities are set to happen this weekend. Now who's excited!? *tumbleweed rolls by* Okay okay, so there seems to be a little negativity towards the All-Star Game over the past several years or more but to be honest I still genuinely enjoy it.

The break from the regular season games is nice and there's something warming about seeing all the top players in the league sharing the same ice surface for the weekend before they begin tearing into each other, fighting for that last playoff spot.

#McD-23 Patrick Roy, Montreal Canadiens
The 1992-93 hockey season was an unforgettable one. Upper Deck produced a 33-card set for McDonald's Canada based on the 1993 NHL All-Star Game. The set contained 27 base cards and six hologram-type cards honoring some of the most exciting players in the league at the time. The holograms were randomly inserted in the four-card packs along with instant win prizes that pertained trips to games, autographed pucks and sticks, etc. Also randomly inserted were redemption cards for oversized (4" by 5 1/2") Patrick Roy base cards that were limited to "just" 150,000 copies.

Upper Deck has confirmed that the unnumbered checklist card was short-printed. Kirk Muller has a corrected error card in the set as well, it is distinguished by his stick blade being partially cropped out. Also it's notable to mention that the set does not include Wayne Gretzky who captained the Campbell Conference.

 #NNO NHL All-Star Fantasy Pack Checklist

#McD-01 Brian Bradley, Tampa Bay Lightning
#McD-02 Pavel Bure, Vancouver Canucks
#McD-03 Jon Casey, Minnesota North Stars
#McD-04 Paul Coffey, Detroit Red Wings
#McD-05 Doug Gilmour, Toronto Maple Leafs
#McD-06 Phil Housley, Winnipeg Jets
#McD-07 Brett Hull, St. Louis Blues
#McD-08 Jari Kurri, Los Angeles Kings
#McD-09 Dave Manson,Edmonton Oilers
#McD-10 Mike Modano, Minnesota North Stars
#McD-11 Gary Roberts, Calgary Flames
#McD-12 Jeremy Roenick, Chicago Blackhawks
#McD-13 Steve Yzerman, Detroit Red Wings
#McD-14 Steve Duchesne, Quebec Nordiques
#McD-15 Mike Gartner, New York Rangers
#McD-16 Al Iafrate, Washington Capitals
#McD-17 Jaromir Jagr, Pittsburgh Penguins
#McD-18 Pat LaFontaine, Buffalo Sabres
#McD-19 Alexander Mogilny, Buffalo Sabres
#McD-20 Kirk Muller, Montreal Canadiens
#McD-21 Adam Oates, Boston Bruins
#McD-22 Mark Recchi, Philadelphia Flyers
#McD-23 Patrick Roy, Montreal Canadiens
#McD-24 Joe Sakic, Quebec Nordiques
#McD-25 Kevin Stevens, Pittsburgh Penguins
#McD-26 Scott Stevens, New Jersey Devils
#McD-27 Pierre Turgeon, New York Islanders









#McH-1 Mario Lemieux, Pittsburgh Penguins
Before the start of the Game, there was a tribute to Mario Lemieux, who was in attendance but could not play due to his treatments for Hodgkin's Disease. Mario's 1992-93 hockey season is nothing short of a storybook.

#McH-2 Teemu Selanne, Winnipeg Jets
Selanne entered the NHL in 92-93 and completely crushed the rookie record books; obliterating the previous markers for most goals and points scored by a rookie. He also set records for most goals, points and consecutive games with a goal in Winnipeg/Arizona franchise history - all of which still stand today.

#McH-3 Luc Robitaille, Los Angeles Kings
Robitaille set league records for most goals (63) and points (125) in a season by a left winger. With Gretzky injured for most of the season, Robitaille assumed the captaincy and led the team in scoring, playing a key role in helping the struggling Los Angeles team clinch the playoffs. The Kings would reach the 1993 Stanley Cup Finals for the first time in franchise history.

#McH-4 Ray Bourque, Boston Bruins

#McH-5 Chris Chelios, Chicago Blackhawks

#McH-6 Ed Belfour, Chicago Blackhawks
Ed Belfour captured his second Vezina Trophy that 92-93 season posting a record of 41-18-11.

#McD-23 Patrick Roy Jumbo LTD Ed MVP 150000, Montreal Canadiens
Here's my original pack-pulled Patrick Roy oversized card from '93 in all it's cellophane glory. I probably thought this was going to be worth a fortune when I was a kid but you can pick it up still in the original wrapper for a few bucks.

This set will always hold a special place in my collecting heart as they bring a large amount of nostalgic value to the table when the cards were cheap and people had no idea what a rookie patch auto card was.

1.28.2017

NHL All-Star Skills Competition, Yup, There's A Hockey Card For That

The 22nd NHL All-Star Skills Competition is being held tonight and what better way to exhibit the event than with a hockey card.

#95 Jason Arnott, Edmonton Oilers
1997-98 Upper Deck Collector's Choice

Jason Arnott represented the Edmonton Oilers as a member of the Western Conference at the 47th National Hockey League All-Star weekend.

The card shown above is from the 1997-98 Upper Deck Collector's Choice set and features Arnott participating in the "Power-Play Relay" segment as part of the Goaltenders Competition Challenge. The Eastern Conference would go on to win the skills competition for the first time since 1992.

Arnott has quite an audience looking on in the background; Bourque, Bondra, Vanbiesbrouck, Alfredsson, Recchi and Scott Stevens to name just a few.

1.10.2017

1995-96 Upper Deck Post Cereal Great Expectations

Lisa Marie Presley marries Michael Jackson, Kurt Cobain commits suicide, The Lion King, Tonya Harding attacks Nancy Kerrigan, OJ - It was 1994.

As you may recall, '94 was also the year in which the NHL held their first lockout, which in turn caused the 1994–95 season to be shortened to 48 games instead of 84. Due to the unpredictability of when or even if the season would go ahead, the players wanted to keep their legs fresh. Some guys decided to play in various European leagues, others decided to remain in North America. As the work stoppage dragged into its second month, the NHLPA organized the  "4-on-4 Challenge" (four players and a goalie on the ice) - a tournament played over  the course of three days from the 10th to the 12th of November 1994;  all the games were played in Hamilton, Ontario's Copps Coliseum.

The tournament consisted of 4 teams; Team Ontario (white jerseys), Team USA (red jerseys), Team Western Canada  (yellow jerseys) and Team Quebec (blue jerseys). Team Ontario would reign  as champions of the tourney, which raised more than half a million dollars to support the Ronald McDonald Children's Charities of Canada and minor hockey associations throughout North America

#10 Patrick Roy Montreal Canadiens
Upper Deck and Post cereals in Canada released a 24-card set titled, 1995-96 Upper Deck Post 'Great Expectations' showcasing a selection of players who participated in the NHLPA 4-on-4 Challenge. The cards featured color action photos with the player's name in a black bar at the top. The backs carry a color player portrait and stats.

These cards were inserted one per specially marked boxes of Post cereals. You could also receive a complete set of cards by mailing in proofs of purchases along with some coin. These factory sets included the NNO header and checklist cards.

There were also 500 Wayne Gretzky autographed cards randomly inserted into the cereal boxes. Lucky collectors who pulled the greatest cereal box prize of their lives had the opportunity to call a toll-free number and have their find certified by Upper Deck.

There are cards featuring Wayne Gretzky, Kelly Hrudey and Felix Potvin included in the set but to my knowledge they did not participate in the NHLPA 4-on-4 Challenge. Their photos were most likely taken for promotional purposes or as part of a instructional video.You can differentiate between the NHLPA jerseys used in the 4-on-4 Challenge and those used in promotional shoots by the "Ronald McDonald Children's Charities of Canada" patch sewn to the 4-on-4 jerseys. The NHLPA sweater that Hrudey and Potvin are sporting also contain a visible Reebok patch on the arm which the 4-on-4 Challenge jerseys did not have.

#1 Ray Bourque, Boston Bruins

#2 Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils

#3 Steve Duchesne, St. Louis Blues

#4 Vincent Damphousse, Montreal Canadiens

#5 Eric Desjardins, Philadelphia Flyers

#6 Eric Lindros, Philadelphia Flyers

#7 Joe Juneau, Washington Capitals

#8 Luc Robitaille, Pittsburgh Penguins

#9 Mark Recchi, Montreal Canadiens

#10 Patrick Roy, Montreal Canadiens

#11 Brendan Shanahan, St. Louis Blues

#12 Scott Stevens, New Jersey Devils

#13 Jason Arnott, Edmonton Oilers

#14 Trevor Linden, Vancouver Canucks

#15 Chris Chelios, Chicago Blackhawks

#16 Paul Coffey, Detroit Red Wings

#17 Wayne Gretzky, Los Angeles Kings

#18 Doug Gilmour, Toronto Maple Leafs

#19 Kelly Hrudey, Los Angeles Kings

#20 Paul Kariya, Anaheim Mighty Ducks

#21 Larry Murphy, Pittsburgh Penguins

#22 Felix Potvin, Toronto Maple Leafs

#23 Keith Tkachuk, Winnipeg Jets

#24 Rob Blake, Los Angeles Kings
Surprisingly, there isn't much information on the web in regards to the NHLPA 4-on-4 Challenge. There hasn't been any rosters shared online but after some research I've found that the following players also attended the charity event: Brett Hull, Joe Sakic, Mike Modano, Pat Lafontaine, John Vanbiesbrouck, Donald Audette, Dave Elllett, Glenn Healy, Pat Verbeek, Curtis Joseph, Russ Courtnall, Geoff Courtnall, Craig Janney, Dave Andreychuk, Sylvain Lefebvre, Jeff Norton, Darryl Sydor, Phil Housley, James Patrick, Tony Granato, Norm Maciver, Gary Suter, Doug Bodger and Ray Ferraro. I'm definitely missing a few names here but as I mentioned previously, information on the tournament is difficult to come by.
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