by Rich Klein
Other than the few hockey players in each generation who seem to become breakout stars into all facets of collecting (Wayne Gretzky, Bobby Orr, Sidney Crosby and Bobby Hull are just a few of the cross-over stars) there is little doubt the goalies are often the biggest stars in the sport.
This year’s product has 18 packs per box with nine cards per pack. Although nothing is guaranteed on the box, every box should produce two or more Goalie Graphs, a non-memorabilia insert and Masked Men III inserts. That is because with the odds starting one in eight packs for each of these types of inserts, and 18 packs in a box, that a collector could expect but is not guaranteed two each of these types of cards.
The base set this year has bulked up to 200 cards. In The Game had over 130 current and former subjects signing cards for this issue.
As of today, leading online sellers have this product at the $90-100 price range. One aspect of I truly enjoyed was the nice mix of retired stars and promising players. The base set is organized into: Future Stars, Stars of the Game (today’s stars); Greats of the Game (retired goalies);Women of the Nets; Immortals (the real old timers) and One Game Wonders.
How did we do from our box?
Base Cards: 137 of 200 with no duplicates
100 Years of Hockey Card Collecting: Grant Fuhr
Deep in the Crease: Sergei Bobrovsky/Brian Boucher/Michael Leighton/Johan Backlund, Nikolai Khabibulin/Devan Dubnyk/Jeff Deslauriers/Olivier Roy
Masked Med III: Marc-Andre Fleury, Michal Neuvirth. (Note that although these cards were all printed as being 1/1 — in reality as per a press release from In The Game, 340 each of the Emerald variations were produced, making it the most common color variation. Gold are limited to 10 and silver versions are numbered to 100).
Franchise Leaders (Jersey Card): Olaf Kolzig (silver version, # to 29)
Game-Used Jersey Black: Corey Crawford
Goalie Graphs cards — both listed as “Stars of the Game”: Peter Budaj (who is listed on the ITG web site as a short print) and Johan Hedberg.
Thus four bigger hits, a bunch of minor hits and a lot of fun and history learning about both the old and new of hockey goalies make 2010-11 Between the Pipes a fun open indeed as the NHL playoffs heat up.
Rich Klein can be reached at [email protected]