Tuesday, February 9, 2021

What's Next?

I helped myself to some hockey cards as a reward for finishing the All-Time Teams series. These are the first cards I scanned with the scanner I got for Christmas:

I'd found a seller with two 1984-85 O-Pee-Chee cards I needed and a ton of older hockey cards in high grade. The only one that fit my collection was this Serge Savard single from 1970-71 OPC:

After some back-and-forth negotiating through eBay Best Offers I added this to my 1970s Canadiens collection for $34.20. More than I wanted to spend, but at least the shipping was free.

If this sounds like a lot to spend on such a card (especially in NM 7) it probably is. I'm still having trouble grappling with the sale prices of high-grade singles these days; I knew they'd appreciate in value but it's happened a decade ahead of schedule. For instance, here is the oldest Wayne Gretzky card I own:

This was scanned on my old machine. Can you see the difference?

I spotted this Gretzky at a card shop/batting cage nearby that I used to frequent before my girls were born. It was ungraded, in a top loader, displayed in a showcase with a handful of other hockey cards. I asked the shopkeep how much he wanted for the card and I think he said $20. I examined it in my hand, noted the tiny imperfection on the left edge.. and bought it anyway. Then I sent it to PSA in my next submission, where it returned a Mint 9 as you can see. For years I had a nice $30-50 card on my hands.

Look at what this single sells for now. Whoaaa baby!

Here are a couple cards from my first 4 Sharp Corners order in November 2013:


I was on a bit of a mission to collect great players' rookie cards in high grade - and 4 Sharp Corners had loads of 'em at the time. This Greg Maddux Fleer Glossy XRC cost $41.27 then. It sells for $200-300 today.

As for the Jagr.. I purchased that card mainly because he was playing for the Devils in 2013. It was a card that I'd seen quite a few times ungraded, despite it being less common than his Score or Upper Deck RCs. This one set me back $34.39. Fuji clued me in to what these sell for now. Good lord, that's just mind-boggling! 

I never bought these cards to flip for a profit - at least not this quickly - but I'm sitting on enough cards that are suddenly selling for triple digits (or more) that I am seriously considering a Shoebox Legends-style sell-off.

There are so many important things I could do with a sudden influx of cash - invest it, save it for home repairs, or a new house, or the girls' college fund. Or I could finish my 1956 Topps set and then sell that in a few years (or not.)  

One more on the way..

My latest purchases are not going to appreciate in value. The 1984-85 O-Pee-Chee set is a money pit, something I'm working on bit by bit just as a challenge. Savard and the Habs project are one of a handful of half-finished mini-sets I'm chipping at slowly, like the 1961 Golden Press set or 1964 Topps Giants. 

The hobby is getting harder to enjoy. Sports in general are harder to enjoy, and after last year I've learned to live without them. Too many ads in NHL games. Too many super-teams in the NBA. Too many rule changes in the MLB. And until Tom Brady retires or dies (whichever comes first) I won't be able to truly enjoy the NFL again. 

New cards don't excite me anymore. The prices have skyrocketed, the flippers hoard everything that was previously affordable, and the monopolies have produced more cards with far less effort and attention to detail. I don't see myself collecting future releases much, if at all. Instead, I'm going back.

Aside from the vintage/graded projects previously mentioned I plan to complete the run of 2010s Topps baseball sets. I've got a factory set of 2011, and hand-collated sets of 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019. That leaves 2010, 2012, 2013, and 2014. None of these are particularly exciting- though I kinda like '13. But it gives me something to trade for since I've still got hundreds of 2017, 2018, and 2019 Topps dupes.


If anyone has piles of these cards taking up space let me know and I'll be happy to make a deal.

As for what's next here.. I'm not sure. I have an order on the way from baseballcardstore.ca that I'll discuss when it arrives - though that might not be until March considering the weather and the post office. I do have an idea for The 1993 though. It's not in my nature to fish for followers, but.. if I can get 25 readers over there, I will reward you with a list of my 93 favorite cards of 1993 - across all sports.

It won't be as insightful as Night Owl's Countdown of 1980s cards but I think it will be fun. Until then...

Thanks for reading!



  1. Your new scanner's producing some excellent images! I wish I still had all my 2010 Topps dupes. I'll be showing off my own baseballcardstore.ca order soon and I'm curious to see what you got.

  2. How in the heck do you not have 25 readers for your 1993 blog? I'm a teacher... so I try not to have favorites... but seriously... I love your blog.

    And by the way... that Gretzky is awesome! And I can't believe the Maddux is going for that much. I've been so focused on basketball... I hadn't really really even checked on my graded baseball stuff.

  3. Sounds like a fun countdown to me!

    I'm sure I have some 2013 dupes kicking around.

  4. This post sounds like just about everybody right now. And I think that every blogger would love to have more followers, but with social media being what it is these days, they're not as easy to come by as they used to be. As far as the fishing goes, I kind of wish that I could do that, but with the way I am, I almost break out into a cold sweat just thinking about trying to do such a thing (as an aside though, I'm completely content with the current group of folks that routinely support my endeavors).

  5. OMG, I LOVE that mini-poster. Although it needs "Their commitment is true, they are righteous, and they are patriots. And I'm their lawyer." And "We are writing a very important Thanksgiving proclamation. And possibly a new action-adventure series." And "A sudden arboreal stop." And...I'll stop now, but you get the idea.

  6. I missed that part about the sets you are trying to complete. I have a ton of '10-'13 to trade. Check out my wantlists for '17-'19 and let's do another trade.