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WHA

It’s monday. Back to work and back to adding to my WHA sets.

There are 4 stand along WHA OPC sets along with the poster insert in the 1973-74 OPC Base set.

This one is from the 2nd stand alone set in 1975-76.

Behold the glory that is Veli Pekka Ketola!

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The hair, the vintage Jets uniform, the card colours and layout all scream 70’s.

Nice solid back stats and layout. I’m loving this set.

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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 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?

As previously mentioned the new local card show was decent and some good deals where had. I have a particular weakness for WHA cards as that long lamented league gave us some unique teams, uniforms and players.

Here are 6 I picked up in the dollar box.

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take particular note of the teams.

Stingers
Cowboys
Crusaders
Aeros
Saints
Oilers

Well clearly the Oilers stand out as one of the teams that merged into the NHL and brought Wayne Gretzky along with them. In the WHA they started out as the Alberta Oilers though.

The others? If you didn’t go see them in your home town then you would not likely see them, they didn’t last long.

In the beginning of the WHA there were to be twelve teams from cities without NHL teams or big enough (in theory) to support a 2nd team.

Including:

Miami Screaming Eagles.
Los Angeles Aces
Chicago Cougars
New York Raiders

Before the league started there were moves, name changes and foldings.

Of the teams shown above..

Cincinnati Stingers – lasted 4 years 1975-1979

Calgary Cowboys – started as the Miami Screaming eagles but never made it to the ice for a single game, transferring to Philadelphia for 1 season as the Blazers, then Vancouver (still as the Blazer) for 2 seasons and then to Calgary as the Cowboys for 1977-1979

Cleveland Crusaders – started as the Calgary Broncos, but like Miami never made it to the ice transferring to Cleveland for 4 seasons 1972-1976 before merging with the Minnesota Fighting Saints

Houston Aeros – Started as the Dayton Arrows who also never played before moving to be the Houston Aeros. I like how they kept, but modified the name to reflect the Houston Aerospace industry.

Minnesota Fighting Saints – lasted from 1972 -1976 and absorbed the remains of the Cleveland franchise before folding.

Edmonton Oilers stared as the Alberta Oilers for the first year and lasted all the way through to the merge with the NHL with only a name change.

I was old enough to see the last couple of seasons of the WHA and remember the merge and how cool it was to get 4 new teams. Anyone else remember those days or collect WHA?