“Just things that happen during a game,” Guerin said. “Just sticking up
for a teammate. That’s the way it goes.”
Monday, September 28, 2009
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Well the Steelers found a way to snatch a loss out of the jaws of victory by losing to the Bungles, of all teams. Come on!! It's the freakin' Bengals for G's sake. They haven't lost in Cincinnati in 9 years. Now they are 1-2 and with the Ravens destruction of the Browns, are 2 games out of first.
This was depressing since it was the first game I got to wear my new Polamalu Jersey (yes its an authentic). I am worried because that's the second game without Troy and the second loss. He won't return from his injury for at least another 2-3 weeks and it isn't looking good for the Steeler's defense.
Also, despite the few breakout plays, there was still no running game. Big Ben threw for a TD and ran another one in but his Pick-6 interception was the difference maker in the game. He was only sacked once but the pressure on him was crazy. The defense played fairly well but Jeff Reed missed another Field Goal, making it 3 for the year.
I am beside myself. I know it's only week 3 but if it doesn't pick up soon, they could be so far behind Baltimore in the division that it will take a miracle. Let's hope it doesn't come to that.
Friday, September 25, 2009
Preseason hockey has started up and I am excited for the upcoming season. The two games that I have watched have gotten me fired up for the first drop of the puck. It's always a good feeling when you are the defending champs.
[WARNING: HEAVY GRAPHICS]
(Thanks to Lonestarr for becoming the next victim, I mean, follower. Hopefully you enjoy the drivel that spews forth from my fingers.)
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Last weekend there was supposed to be a show in my area. Over the past few years, these shows have become few and far between and I always look forward to the once a month (or so) shows that come around. Eventhough I do a lot of trading as well as buying on the Bay, it is still fun to talk to dealers and search the boxes for hidden gems. I arrived about an hour and a half after the doors were to have opened, only to find it had been cancelled. So I started thinking, just like Video Killed the Radio Star...did the Internet Kill the Card Show/Shop?
From about 1990-2001, there were 3-4 shows in my regional area (which I consider about a 40 mile radius) each weekend. With the larger shows at the Rosemont in Chicago and the occasional appearance of the National, some major damage could be done in a year with buying/selling/trading. Now there is lucky to be 1-2 a month. With the cancellation this weekend, there isn't another one scheduled until October 17th (the next closest one is 37 miles away the weekend before).
As for shops, I remember in the summer of 1996 I plotted a map of all the shops in my area and made an effort to visit them all. There were 33 shops within a half hour drive in any direction. I only made it to 26 of them on my list but I picked up at least 1 item at each one. I felt a great sense of accomplishment and also created a "friendship" with many of the dealers. Of the 26 that I visited, 2 of them still exist. I checked on the other 7 and two of those are still in business as well. Four of the dealers, that I know of, are dealing exclusively online. The rest...who knows? Now there are 5 shops within 30 miles of where I live and only two of those carry more than 1 sport in their inventories(1 of them only does non-sports).
So I pose these questions...Are their still shows in your area, do you go to them, are their shops around you, do you go to them, is the internet eventually going to be the only way to sustain this hobby?
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
I do, however, take exception to all the Bears fans that now seem to think that they are the team to beat in the NFL since they beat the "Champs". Fools!! All of you. Here is why.
1. The first drive of the game. The Steelers dominated your defense. So what if Urlacher was out. He doesn't cover down field anyway. This is how the Steelers usually play and could have if it wasn't for some of the other issues.
2. Jeff Reed was drunk on 40's of Old English and Thunderbird and missed 2 field goals. He hasn't missed 2 field goals since 1923 when the Kaiser outlawed field goal kicking. In other words, this was a fluke, people. It was an unfortunate anomaly that your defense had nothing to do with.
3. It's not an excuse...the field condition was horrible!! This goes for both teams. How many receivers and defenders did we see fall on the ground or lose their footing due to the horrendous field condition coupled with the rain. For a nationally televised game, that was, in my opinion, an embarrassment.
4. Cutler has not shown that he can throw the ball more than 20 yards for an entire game. He is not going to be able to live with the dink and dunk passes 5-7 yards down the field. I give players a ton of credit for their game play but he has yet to show me he is worth what the Bears had to give up...especially since Orton continues winning in Denver.
5. I don't know what the logic was here but the Steelers pass rush was non-existent. When are we going to let Woodley and Harrison loose? If Lebeau would have called a normal Steeler football game, we wouldn't be having this conversation. Cutler would have spent more time on his back than Paris Hilton.
6. Polamalu was out, Clark got hurt. There is no way in the world that the Bears receivers would have been able to run down the middle of the field like that if Polamalu was in the lineup. No way!! Clark, despite what I think of him as a player, is not an apt replacement for Troy. Period.
7. Most importantly, the Bears aren't even the best team in their division, let alone the league. Minnesota and Green Bay are still the teams to beat (despite the Packers loss to the Bungles). Minnesota has shown a diverse arsenal in the passing game and AP is, let's face it, unstoppable. It is sad when 95 yards can be considered an "off-day". The Packers, again, despite the loss, have a tough defense and a more than capable field general with Aaron Rogers.
I'm done with this. No more talky. Bring on the Bungles.
Friday, September 18, 2009
At any rate, when I returned home, I was pleasantly surprised by an envelope in my mailbox from a fellow trader. It was a trade I had forgotten about but was definitely one that I would have remembered quick. I just thought I would post it up.
1. It is a Steeler card I didn't have (duh, this is obvious)
2. It is a rookie card of Limas Sweed, who, if you don't know, is going to be Hines Ward's replacement someday; currently #3 on the depth chart (if he can hold onto the ball).
3. It is a jersey card. And not just any jersey...it is a gold swatch!! I have a bunch of Steeler jerseys (Parker, Ward, Big Ben, Bettis, etc.) but not one of them is gold. They are all either black or white.
4. I like the design. The swatch is unobtrusive to the photo and the design doesn't take anything away from the photography like most products these days. The focus of the card is still the player himself. Too bad it isn't an action shot.
This card makes me happy.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
The first pack (actually it was a PWE, but that's ok) had a card from a member on the Bench. I have been hanging around on there for awhile now, mostly providing market/BV pricing to other members since I like to waste inordinate amounts of time at work. One of the members apparently noticed my efforts and sent me a card as a little reward. It's also a refractor. I have this set already but none of the refractors so this is nice. Thanks to MITCHIEHO over at the Bench for sending this.
Box Guarantees: None
Packs per box: 24
Cards per pack: 12
Cards per box: 288
Base set completion: 60% of 440
Rookies Pulled (65):
There are too many and I'm not listing them all...ok maybe I will
Brian Brohm, Andre Woodson, Chad Henne,
Colt Brennan, Dennis Dixon (NFT), Erik Ainge,
Johnson, Matt Flynn, Morelli, McFadden (held),
Stewart, Jones (held), Hart, Smith, Slaton (held),
Forte (held), Boyd, Jackson, Kelly (held),
Manningham (held), Hardy, Jackson, Thomas,
Jordy Nelson, Williams, Simpson, Caldwell, Morgan,
Fred Davis, Bennett, Finley, Tamme, Kellen Davis,
Long, Baker, Otah, Chevis Jackson, Sims, Harrison,
Moore, Bryant, Laws, Gholston, Merling, Conner,
Lofton, Mayo, Gordon, Wheeler, Rivers, Highsmith,
Adibi, Henderson, Bruce Davis (NFT), Dizon, Geno
Hayes, Mike Jenkins, Talib, McKelvin, Lee, Porter,
Castille, Griffin, Tyrell Johnson, Jamar Adams
Inserts Pulled (24):
Gold Border #'d/2008: Laurence Maroney PSH #325, Antonio Gates #174, Antoine Cason #430
Honor Roll: Gino Marchetti, Art Donovan, Johnny "Blood" McNally
Own The Game: Terrell Owens, Randy Moss, Braylon Edwards
HOF Class of 2008: Gary Zimmerman, Emmitt Thomas
Armed Forces Fan of the Game: James Lenihan (Bengals), Mark Middlebrook (Jaguars), Wyat Tomlinson (Chiefs), Sean Ryan (Broncos)
Brett Favre Flight to 420: 255, 361, 354, 401
Dynasties: Ted Johnson (Pats), Ty Law (Pats), Donnie Shell (Steelers) [NFT], Joe Greene (Steelers) [NFT], Joe Montana (49ers), Kenna Turner (49ers)
For me, despite the 65 rookies in this box, it would have to be the two Steeler's Dynasty cards. I have a few of these from Chrome too and I just think they are really slick looking. Kind of boring but slick nonetheless.
First on the product...I really like this set design. It features a heavy card stock with an all white border on the base cards and a slick gloss coating. This is, in my opinion, a huge improvement over the light weight condition sensitive 2007 set. The photos are all action photos and the rookies are either in practice jerseys or their actual team uniforms (what a concept). The masthead on the card features the team name decked out in some kind of carnival ballon pattern.
I wasn't a fan in the beginning but I have warmed up to it. As for the box itself...It was a nice print run with no doubles in the entire box. Unfortunatly, there were no guaranteed hits and that's exactly what I got, no hits. The inserts were very week, especially with the Fans of the Game set and the continuation of the Brett Favre ridiculousness. I would have liked to see at least one GU'd but such is life. The product gets an 8 for the slick, appealing design. My box gets a 4
Friday, September 11, 2009
The Pens got to meet with the President and get a tour of the White House before the ceremony. The earlier part of the day was spent with the kids from the Fort Dupont Ice Rink and the Hockey in the Hood program. As reported by NHL's blog about the trip, the kids seemed shy and took a while to warm up to the guys but once they did, it was a great day. Crosby mentioned that the best question came when one of the kids asked if he and Malkin were brothers. Bill Guerin chimed in that they certainly looked alike.
“That’s what the Stanley Cup is all about. Not just having your names engraved alongside the best players in history, but also giving back to others along the way,” the president said. “And this spirit of service helps to strengthen our communities, it strengthens our country, and I know the team gets a lot in return for it as well.”
Awesome stuff!! Here is some video:
Thursday, September 10, 2009
There is a blog over on NHL.com that is following the Pens as they get to tour the White House, meet with the President, and meet with some youth hockey clubs in the D.C. area. It looks to be a lot of fun for the players and especially the kids of the Fort Dupont Hockey League.
It brings back memories of when they won their other championships in the early 90's and were invited to Washington. In fact, that is another one of my favorite cards in my collection.
1991-92 Upper Deck "White House Welcome" card.
This card (I know, it's a crappy scan) features Mario Lemieux presenting then President Bush Sr. with a #2 Penguins jersey, the same number he wore when he played for Yale. I love this card because it shows the impact of sports on the country and the world for that matter. The practice of inviting teams to the White House has been going on for years and to have one of my favorite teams take the stage with the President of the United States is such an honor. I also like the card because you can see Joe Mullen, Bryan Trottier, Kevin Stevens, I think Mark Recchi behind the President, and I can't tell who is behind Mullen or Lemieux. How many cards out there have multiple HOF'ers and the President? The answer is none.
I can only hope UD makes one for today's event. That would be cool.
(as a footnote, I realize Kevin Stevens went down in flames like a cliche but before his injury, he was dominant. He could have had HOF #'s if it wasn't for the injury and the JUNK. I'm sticking to my opinions that he was better than Cam Neely. There, I said it.)
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Ok, so it's not really the best card ever but for me, it is one of my top 5 cards that I own (probably even #1). I received this card in a contest over at Trade Cards Now after one of their trading day box break giveaways. I usually never win in these things so I was pleasantly surprised when I was notified of my victory. I was even more surprised after receiving the card.
As some of you already know, I collect Pens and Steelers cards for my PC. So this card, is a perfect cornerstone to a Pittsburgh sports collection. What I like about this card:
1. It's serial numbered out of 150. That means that only 149 other people in the entire world could own one of these. (Big deal, you say, in this world of limited production) Since I'm not in this to turn a profit, this makes me proud. (The sky is also purple in my world so, there)
2. It features two of Pittsburgh sports' greatest players; Mario Lemieux and Terry Bradshaw. 7 World Championships between them (4 for Terry, and 3 for Mario [as player and owner]). I think that is enough of an explanation there.
3. It has jersey swatches from both players. I have always wanted a Lemieux jersey card and this is a great way to satisfy that want. Plus, the Bradshaw jersey is a bonus. (if only they were multicolored...).
4. The artwork is great. The player portraits are true to life representations of both players. I especially like the cityscape of downtown Pittsburgh in the background, one of the greatest city scenes, especially at night, that you will ever see. I know if you ever watch a sporting event filmed in Pittsburgh you hear the announcers talk to the point of nausea about how it looks coming into town. Truly, though, if you have never driven through the Fort Pitt or Lincoln tunnels going into town and had the entire city explode before your eyes as you come out, you probably don't get it. Say what you want, it gives me goosebumps.
5. It is called "Hometown Heroes". I can't think of two better examples of that statement than Terry and Mario.
I want to thank Lynn over at TCN once again for giving me the opportunity to own this card. This will be one in my collection forever.
Obligatory Plug: If you are looking for a nice place to trade, check out Trade Cards Now. I've been on there for a few years and it is full of great traders and good collectors.
I am trying to complete team sets, pre-1980 for both teams. This has been difficult since most collectors covet their vintage hockey and football. Someday, they will be mine. Oh, yes...they will be mine.
Anyway, if anyone wants to trade, let me know.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
I came across this article posted on Forbes magazine (thanks to Rob at VOTC for pointing out it's existence on Twitter). It parallels the relationship between the sports card hobby (baseball cards specifically) and the current economic situation we are under. The main purpose of the article is to highlight market responses to profit, inflation, and anti-trust lawsuits by making the connection to the sports card hobby as a whole. I thought it was an interesting read and felt I would bounce it again. (You don't have to be an economist to understand it)
Baseball Cards And The Current Economy by John Tamny
Friday, September 4, 2009
I'm so glad the NFL season is about to begin. I hate the couple months between the end of the NHL season and the beginning of the NFL season. It is excruciatingly nauseating when the only sports to watch on TV are Golf, Tennis, and Baseball. I am an action sports guy and if someone isn't getting beat up or slammed to the ground, I'm not really interested. No offense to any baseball, golf or tennis fans out there. I enjoy golfing. I love tennis (on the Wii). I have no problem going to see the Cubs or Sox, or my personal favorite, the Gary/Southshore Railcats. They won last night 4-3, by the way, in game one of the Northern League semi's. But nonetheless, I just can't call myself a fan.
At any rate...the cards...There were two packages that I missed when scanning. I think I already filed the cards away in my Steeler box before I could get them. However, I did get these.(Click on the pictures for bigger images)
I almost forgot how hideous 1991 Fleer football cards were until this gem of a Rod Woodson card showed up. Boy did we take the forcefed crap of the early 90s too serious or what?
I don't know how this Heath Miller 2006 Topps card got mixed up with these 2007 Topps cards. I think that is my 58th copy of that card too. Somehow in all my trades and card packages that I have been receiving, this card seems to keep popping up. It's like the wax box of 1989 Topps baseball cards I bought back in 1993 at the National. I pulled 16 Barry Larkins and 9 Candy Maldonado cards in the same box. Good Times!
Thursday, September 3, 2009
The four on the left (top 2 and bottom 2) came in one transaction. It includes a Maxime Talbot rookie, a Jordan Staal, another one of those Crosby inserts that I am not sure if I need but will take anyway, and an old school Yzerman All Star card from 90-91 Upper Deck. I know I have that one already. In fact, checking my inventory, I already have 5 copies of it. It's Stevie Y though, so I'll take it.
The next two (top and bottom) were from a trade with a fellow Bench member. The Lemieux is needed for my collection and the Rick DiPietro rookie was just a filler for the trade. I didn't have one, I didn't really want one, but he is a player in my goalie book so I'll take it.
The Goligoski came from that blaster box I did a few weeks ago. It never got scanned so it is on here. However, the Jean Pronovost 69-70 card is a sweet addition to my vintage Penguins cards. Although not in the best condition, it is one that I didn't have and will look nice next to his 70-71 PSA 9 that I have. I don't know why but I love the old school blue Pens sweaters. I wish I could find one with the original Pens logo that looked like a "pigeon with a neckerchief".
These are some 1984-85 Topps Hockey that I needed as an upgrade. I have the entire set for this year (minus the Yzerman rookie) and since I won't be getting that card anytime soon, I decided in the meantime to upgrade the condition of the cards in the set. Considering what I gave up for these, not a bad deal.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
This is finally great news for the hobby. At least going forward. However, nothing was mentioned to the fact that there was a Katrina scale flooding of the market already with fake autos. If we are ever going to remedy the problem, Topps and other card companies will need to adress this issue.
You can read the press release here.