Editor’s Blog: Olbermann and Sugar; Reaction to CBS Baseball Card Industry Story, Dawkins to Sign at NSCC

Bert Sugar

Yesterday, we carried the news of the death of Bert Sugar, the man  who launched The Sports Collectors Bible, the definitive guide to baseball cards and related stuff back in the 1970s.   Rob Lifson was one of his ‘senior editors’.

Another was Keith Olbermann.

Both were precocious collectors who knew more than they should at the time about T206s, Old Judges and the guy played third base for the 1908 Chicago Cubs. Both had fond memories of Sugar like the funny tale about his accumulation of 1970 Kellogg’s football sets.

On Monday, Olbermann bid an entertaining and emotional farewell to someone who meant a lot to collectors–and so many others–during his 75 years:


The net has been buzzing with reaction to the “Decline of the Baseball Card Industry” piece that ran on CBS Sunday morning. Opinions are all over the board; from card companies and bloggers defending the current state of the hobby to those who felt there was a lot of merit to the story by Armen Keteyian.

As I wrote yesterday, there wasn’t anything in it that hadn’t been written before.  I guess the fact that it was on national TV and not a column in the Smalltown News is what generated so much talk.

Here’s Panini America’s reaction.

Our Facebook page had some discussion.

Honestly, it’s not worth worrying about.

For every story painting a death scene, there are others talking about Peyton Manning on his first Broncos’ football card or Tebow as a Jet.  Keep calm and carry on (hey, if it was good enough for Churchill, it’s good enough for me).


Props to Tri-Star Productions for adding Darryl “Chocolate Thunder” Dawkins to the autograph guest list at the National Sports Collectors Convention.  He’s someone who may not be a Hall of Famer, but he had a big personality–someone hoop heads remember with fondness.  I can’t imagine he’ll cost an arm and a leg.

Dawkins, for those too young to remember, was a mountain of a man who jumped from high school to the NBA and once said he was “from the planet Lovetron” who spent the off-season practicing “interplanetary funkmanship”.

He’s the one responsible for the NBA going to breakaway rims in 1979 after he shattered two backboards with his powerful slams (cue the video up to about 1:45 if you’re in a big hurry).

Dawkins used to actually name his most demonstrative dunks and one of those backboard-breaking numbers over Bill Robinzine in ’79 led to this memorable moniker:   “The Chocolate-Thunder-Flying, Robinzine-Crying, Teeth-Shaking, Glass-Breaking, Rump Roasting, Bun-Toasting, Wham-Bam-I-Am Jam”.

It’s something that could only have come out of the ’70s.  I’m not an autograph guy but if I could get him to sign that inscription…