Thursday, April 4, 2013

Check Out My Impulse Purchases: Penguins Edition

 I freely admit I have an odd relationship with hockey.  It's my least favorite of the four major sports by a pretty wide margin.  Yet Pittsburgh has also been fortunate enough to have two of the most talented players in the past half century play in the city, and some have some fantastic teams over the past two decades.

As I've expanded my collecting interests, I'm also giving hockey another try.  It certainly doesn't hurt that the Pens have been red hot most of the season, and look primed for a deep playoff run  Thus far, the results have been positive.

It also means that from a card perspective, my Penguins collection is a bit strange.  Cards of many of the current players are a bit pricier than I want to spend for a casual collection.  I also don't see a lot of hockey pop up at shows here in Ohio, and obviously prices in Pittsburgh above market-value, and definitely not budget friendly.

COMC's Penguin selection pales compared to what can be found of their baseball and football counterparts.  I honestly don't know if that's more of a problem with the hockey card industry in general, or simply a byproduct of Canadian hockey collectors not wanting to pay the high postage costs of shipping their cards across the border (though COMC did recently open a Canadian office).

Either way, these cards aren't as flashy as my other pickups, and they certainly don't have the same degree of sentimental value to me that some of the others do.  Still, it's a fun collection to build as my knowledge and appreciation for the game also evolves.

One thing that really sealed the deal to convince me to start a small Pens collection are their jerseys.  The horizontal script and fade pattern on the shoulders of their home and alternate jerseys are, simply put, awesome.  I'm a sucker for great jerseys.  And though their current home and away combos don't impress me nearly as much, I have really enjoyed the blue alternate jerseys that have been integrated over the past few seasons. 

 As with my Steeler additions, mos of these cards were in the dollar range, though the Nick Johnson was around $2.  How can I pass up a Pittsburgh autograph for less than the cost of a Taco Bell taco?  Especially since these cards will be a part of my collection for a long, long time, while the taco would be staying with me a for a far more brief (and less pleasant) journey.
 This card may be my favorite Pens card in my collection.  From the Winter Classic at Heinz Field a few years back, I absolutely love the outdoor sky in the background, and visible snowflakes in the foreground.  What a spectacularly framed photo!
I may be in the minority, but I really liked the Pens '90's logo.  Sure the penguin looked a bit angry, and perhaps a it too regal for a sports team.  But something about the logo just screams '90's to me.  But much like Third Eye Blind cd's and Ten Things I Hate About You, I don't consider that a bad thing.

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