Remember that game from Sesame Street when you were a kid?

And because this is sports focused we can do the other version 3 of these things.

Well when writing my blog the other day I ran into the situation with the 1979-80 OPC NHL set.  Can you figure out which one is different below?

 

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Ok times up. Did you guess the Quebec Nordiques team in the bottom right? Well then you win!

The Oilers, Jets and Whalers got NHL Logo cards. But the 4th new NHL entry got a team photo card (just like the rest of the leagues existing teams got). Strangely they did not put it in the correct alphabetical order like the rest of the team cards.

IMG_0556[1]Look, there it is AFTER Washington.

Memory is a weird thing, because If you had asked me I would swear there was Nordiques Logo card as well. I can picture myself getting it, looking at it, holding it, trading it. But that’s not true. In reality it never existed in the familiar blue bordered 1979-1980 OPC Set. Which is strange because it exists in the 1979-80 Topps Team Sticker Inserts, as well as part of the 4 logo card from the Topps Base set of the same year.

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Logo cards for the Nordiques do exist. From the beginning to the end of their existence.

And its not like OPC didnt have the logo on file. There is one in the 1972-73 OPC Team Logos along with the rest of the WHA

There is one in the 1990-91 Pro Set along with every team.

But as a stand alone1979-80 OPC Logo of New NHL Team card. Nope. Despite what I know to be true in my head, my memory says I had that card once.

 

I’ve always had a bit of a love-hate relationship with inserts and parallels. I guess it goes back to the the beginning of my collection.

OPC did not have a bunch of inserts when I started.  1979-1980 through to 1985-1986 OPC had none.  I remember you would see sporadic glossys that came from the 77-78 set, and then in 1985-86 there was the sticker inserts, but for the 7 years in between, nothing.

Now, there were some other sets like the 1980-81 Supers and Stickers starting in 1981-1982 but these were packaged and marketed separately. You didn’t have to make a decision on whether it was part of the set. You didn’t “pull” a super from your pack or a sticker. If you wanted to collect the stickers, you bought the album and the stickers and you collected them in a separate endeavour. Some kids collected one or the other, most collected both, but you rarely mixed them up or traded one for the other.

Anything that would be considered a “pull” these days was simply a base card then. Examples include the Bobby Orr “retirement” card in 1978-79 OPC,  the 4 teams Logo Cards in 1979-80 or even the Super Actions in 1981-812.  I remember getting the Pelle Lindbergh Memorial card in 1985-86 and thinking this is the same, yet different from the others, but still just a card you needed for the set.

Worthy of an insert, but just a regular base card.

Worthy of an insert, but just a regular base card.

Nothing special here, just 1 of 396.

Nothing special here, just 1 of 396.

Now in any 8 card pack you get at minimum 1 insert or parallel. So really you get 7 cards and then a “pull”. I’m a set collector so it always leads to the question. Am I going to collect this subset? Is it part of the base? Is it even possible to get them all?

Well for 2012-13 OPC one set I am going for is the “Rainbow Parallel”. Shiny card versions of the base (not to be confused with the Retro, Black, Red or Blank Versions”.   12 year old me would have gone ape shit trying to collect this set. 42 year old me looks at it as just another set among many of parallels and inserts. But they are shiny. Shiny cards for a shiny Tuesday as I get 140 cards closer to completing this parallel in one fell swoop. Getting a box of these from Robert in Winnipeg makes me happy.

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I’ve always liked that phrase. A hodge-podge.

hodgepodge or hodge-podge

(ˈhɒdʒˌpɒdʒ)

n

1. a jumbled mixture
2. (Cookery) a thick soup or stew made from meat and vegetables

Also called (in Britain and certain other countries): hotchpotch

I’m guessing that it is because I grew up in a house with English parents.

I picked up a hodge-podge of cards (the jumbled mix, not the stew) on Friday from a guy I met online. He was looking for 86-87 OPC in great condition to trade and I just happened to have a bunch from the replacements I had after buying the full set a couple weeks back.

So needing an excuse to travel to city I took my nephew for a road trip and we went and made the trade.

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A hodge-podge within a hodgepodge. Some 1983-84 OPC Stickers. I’m pretty sure I had this whole set at some point in my life, but it’s been lost to the sands of time. Look closely. It’s the bottom half of Ray Bourque, the bottom of Glenn Anderson and the top of Wayne Gretzky.

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I’ve always liked the 1977-78 OPC set. Simple design and one of the last sets to show Team Cards. Today you can still get Team Logo cards, but not team picture cards very often. Such a simple idea, I’m really not sure why it hasn’t been brought back.

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WHA Cards. I love ’em. Hard to find sometimes, but always a blast when you do. Marc Tardif. In an LA Sharks uniform on a Quebec Nordiques card. Whats not to love?

So today is Canada Day. Happy Canada to any other Canadians out there and enjoy the BBQ today.

It’s also free agent frenzy day. In both the NBA and NHL it’s the start of silly season where middling players get huge contracts as they are seen as the missing piece of the puzzle.

It kinda reminded me of the most recent pickup I made and how I can tie these together.

When the WHA was launched it went after perhaps the biggest name possible. Bobby Hull. Signing him immediately gave the new league some legitimacy and started the fun, but all too brief era of the WHA.

Just got this yesterday.

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What a handsome guy.  No long hair 70’s look for Bobby. He reminds me of the gym teacher I had in public school.

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The card is well travelled and well loved with a bit of a bigger ding in the one corner, but hey, its not bad for over 40 years old.

It’s early in this set for me as this is just card #24 of 343 in the set I own.  (Yes, I know most guides say the set has 340 cards but I’m going for the MASTER OPC SET remember? So that means 1extra of each version of the Park and Ratelle variations as well as both variations of the 3rd Checklist).

Ok. Part 1 of my new plan is done, figure out what you want to collect.

Part 2 starts now. Going through the boxes of whats left and trying to A) find a good home or B) moving it to the banished pile.

I’ll try to add a few items each week (or when I feel like it).

Any baseball collectors with specific needs (team or player) let me know and I can put a package together for you no strings attached. If I have it, you can have it.

 

1st post Some Topps Gold Baseball.

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A couple are from 93 and a couple from 94 I think.

Is thereabouts one word or two? Anyway, the big list is done. And it is a BIG list.

Every OPC Hockey card possible. Classic/Original run, Topps life support parallels and Upper Deck revivals.

64296 Unique cards. And my goal is one of each. (I’ll give you time to stop laughing).

Impossible task – most likely.

Lots of fun trying – most definitely

I’m putting this chart here to track where I started from. June 29, 2015

Full list = all possible “OPC cards”. This includes, all variables, all SP’s, all inserts, all box bottoms, checklists and errors.

Pre 2000 = well obviously cards issued prior to 2000

Classic OPC Run – The  bread and butter collection.  to 1968-1969 OPC to 1994-1995 OPC Premier (and the death of OPC v1.0)

Post 2000= cards issued after 2000 (under the Topps banner to start but last 10 years as an Upper Deck brand)

My 1st focus is on the classic run and I’m almost halfway there.

For anyone who wants to know how I got to these numbers, check out the page called (The Big Count at the top)

Total Cards                   Owned                   %

Full List 64296 14377 22.36%
Pre 2000 19176 8140 42.45%
Classic OPC Run 16235 8029 49.45%
Post 2000 45120 6237 13.82%

1986-87 OPC. Its a modern set, and it allows me to check off a big hole in my collection. A Patrick Roy RC!

Nowadays I find it rare to see ungraded cards of the value below at a store or show. And rarer to see one in a collection that makes sense to me. See, I know its a one of the most counterfeited cards out there. I’ve seen some fakes. You know when someone only has this one card (5 times) it seems too good to be true. I’ve been wary of buying it. Its an expensive card by itself. It was also one of 7 cards I needed for the set.

Along with the Gretzky, Messier, Kurri, Lemieux, Moog and Yzerman from the same set a Patrick Roy RC finishes it off. Yes all the big $ cards I was missing, because I sold them when I was 18 to help fund my first backpacking trip with my girlfriend to Europe. I kept everything else from the set, but the hole has been bugging me for 25 years.

Well now the hole is whole. I picked up a complete set for a great price in great condition. 95% of the set I relegated to the trade bin, but I did keep these cards. So behold. The missing pieces in my 1986-87 OPC Hockey Set.

 

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Sorry, forgot to scan the Messier.

Look at this Patrick Roy RC. Corners so sharp. Providence checked and very unlikely to be anything other than a great condition pack pulled card. One previous owner and now a highlight of my collection.

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It’s such a great feeling to be able to scratch off a card of this size from a list.

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