Monday, October 06, 2008

Hockey Week - 2006-07 Parkhurst

Third pack out of the Fairfield repack whatsit. Parkhurst is sort of like the Bowman of hockey cards. The cards originally were produced in 1951 in Canada and for some reason didn't have the rights to any New York or Boston players. Topps and O-Pee-Chee eventually took over the hockey card market and Parkhurst stopped producing cards in the '60s. The old cards look great but can be hard to find. I'm sorry to say, retro junkie that I am, I don't have a single original Parkie in my collection.

In 1991, the brand was brought back as a zombie product for Pro Set who used contemporary players in a kinda sorta 'premium' design. Pro Set went bust after a couple of years and the brand transferred to Upper Deck who used it for contemporary and retro sets. UD lost the license and it bounced around for a while between Parkhurst Products, Inc, In the Game and finally settled back with UD, who pretty much own hockey right now. Here's a pack of the stuff from '06-'07 with Bobby Orr on the front. I've never opened a pack of this stuff and the "collect autograph cards of the entire Parkhurst base set" line on the pack intrigues me.

13 Jean Beliveau
33 Gerry Cheevers
34 Don Cherry!!!
108 Jim Rutherford

Ok, the Don Cherry card has got to be the most fantastic thing ever. What the hell is that... a plaid duster? Sheer brilliance whatever it is. Stuff like that makes me regret I'm not Canadian. This set kind of looks like a hockey version of Fleer Greats of the Game. Lots of legends and autographs. No autos here but some decent vintage players at least. I got another two goalie pack with Bruins Hall of Famer Gerry Cheevers and Red Wing goalie I've never heard of Jim Rutherford. Apparently Jim was the GM for the cup winning Carolina Hurricanes, good for him. Cheever's card is pretty cool for the sweet mask with his trademark stitches painted on. He's also got about two cows worth of padding between the gloves and those blockers. There's another Hall of Famer in Jean Beliveau, a 500 goal scorer for Montreal. The dude has a trophy named after him so you know he's good. Here's Jean scoring a goal in game 7 of the 1965 Cup Finals:

This is good stuff right here, too bad UD was stingy with the cards at only four per pack. I really like the old photos, it's nice to see '60s squares in the stands, Jason style hockey masks and no ads plastered all over the boards.


madding said...

A friend of mine was just telling me the other day that UD was currently the only licensee for NHL. Nothing against Upper Deck, but that's just terrible. No leagues should allow that to happen.

shoeboxlegends said...

Man that Gerry Cheevers card is awesome, I'd love to send you something for it if you'd be willing to trade...