Archive for June, 2012
Dianne Hatley serves Upper Deck very well as an account executive who works directly with our network of Certified Diamond Dealers throughout the U.S. and Canada. When I called her while she was representing the company at the 2012 NHL Draft in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and asked her if she could go on Cardboard Connection Radio, she happily agreed. On top of that, she did a fantastic job making sure Upper Deck’s 2012 NHL Draft Runner had an excellent time at the event. She also did great at making sure kids in attendance had a memorable experience at the Upper Deck booth.
These are things she expected to do as it was part of her job and she enjoys it. But the real fun began when something she didn’t expect happened. A pleasant gentleman came up to her excited to see that Upper Deck had a presence at the NHL Draft and she knew she had seen him before.
Maybe it was from his commercial.
You see, Upper Deck has been working with Phil Pritchard (Vice President Curator of the Hockey Hall-of-Fame) and Craig Campbell (Manager of Resources & Archives of the Hockey Hall-of-Fame) in our “Day with the Cup” insert series. “The Keeper of the Cup,” as Phil is affectionately called, asked Dianne and the crew if they wanted to come over and check out all the hardware. Dianne explained they had to keep the booth manned so Phil invited them to come over when the show ended.
Upon arrival to the trophy area, it became immediately clear to Dianne that Phil takes great pleasure in his job and genuinely enjoys helping to bring fans closer to the game by experiencing the NHL’s greatest prize.
Phil and Craig made sure each member of the UD team got their picture taken with the Stanley Cup and other trophies on display.
And when it was finally time to lock the hallowed artifact away, Craig made sure the famous white gloves were of course on!
Phil and Craig didn’t have to be so nice to the Upper Deck team, but that is just genuinely how they are. That is pretty incredible they can keep such a great disposition considering how much they travel, but perhaps it is their love for their work that keeps them smiling throughout. For a really great read, make sure to check out their Stanley Cup Journal where you can see where the Cup is and how the Los Angeles Kings are spending time with it. It will also give you a preview to the 2012-13 NHL Upper Deck “Day with the Cup” set!
The staff at Upper Deck get very excited about participating in the National Sports Collectors Convention and we have really enjoyed the experience over the years. This year we are pulling out all the stops to make the event very special for collectors who head out to the show in Baltimore, Maryland from Wednesday, August 1 through Sunday, August 5.
For starters we have created a very compelling wrapper redemption program for the 2012 National Sports Collectors Convention. Collectors who purchase five (5) HOBBY packs of any of these Upper Deck products from a Certified Diamond Dealer and they will provide you with a special voucher from Upper Deck. Bring that voucher and the packs to the Upper Deck Booth and you will receive one (1) 2012 Upper Deck National Sports Collectors Convention pack in exchange for the voucher and wrappers!
2012 Upper Deck Football
2011-12 NHL SPx
2011 College Football Legends
2012 SPx Football
2011-12 NHL SP Authentic
2012 Upper Deck Soccer
UPDATE: Collectors just need to purchase two (2) packs of 2011-12 NHL SP Game-Used or one (1) pack of 2012 SP Signature Edition Baseball to receive one (1) 2012 Upper Deck National Sports Collectors Convention Pack.
Collectors can bring their voucher and packs to the Upper Deck booth beginning at noon each day and packs will be available while supplies last. Stop by the Upper Deck booth before you purchase packs to confirm we still have inventory of these packs. Collectors are limited to claim five redemption packs, per person, per day. There will be a different five card set available each day.
Thursday, August 2
NSCC-1 – Michael Jordan
NSCC-2 – Thierry Henry
NSCC-3 – Alonzo Mourning
NSCC-4 – Roger Staubach
NSCC-5 – Cody Buckel
Friday, August 3
NSCC-6 – Wayne Gretzky
NSCC-7 – Robert Griffin III
NSCC-8 – David Robertson
NSCC-9 – Don Mattingly
NSCC-10 – Dwayne DeRosario
Saturday, August 4
NSCC-11 – Tiger Woods
NSCC-12 – John Kruk
NSCC-13 – Sidney Crosby
NSCC-14 – Landon Donovan
NSCC-15 – Trent Richardson
Sunday, August 5
NSCC-16 – LeBron James
NSCC-17 – Bobby Orr
NSCC-18 – Jack Morris
NSCC-19 – Brodie Merrill
NSCC-20 – Alex Ovechkin
Now to add to the excitement of this program, randomly inserted into these packs for each day are limited-edition autograph cards. Fans can find autographs from top stars like LeBron James, Michael Jordan, Sidney Crosby, Wayne Gretzky, Landon Donovan, Bobby Orr, Don Mattingly, Trent Richardson, Alex Ovechkin, Robert Griffin III and many more.
As we saw last year, pulling these autograph cards could be quite a thrill for collectors!
For a super-sized gallery of the autograph cards in this set, click HERE! And look for more details right here on the Upper Deck Blog for some more exciting programs we will have at the 2012 National Sports Collectors Convention including some big announcements on redemptions!
The Upper Deck booth at the 2012 National Sports Collectors Convention will see a steady stream of activity each day as collectors bust new packs to receive a special set UD is creating for the event. Hidden inside some of these packs will be limited-edition autograph cards of some of the biggest sports stars on the planet like Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky, Don Mattingly, Robert Griffin III, Landon Donovan and more! Take a look at some of the incredible autograph cards collectors can find in early August at the show.
To find out how exactly you can get your chance to find one of these autograph cards, click HERE for all the details on the wrapper redemption promotion at the 2012 National Sports Collectors Convention!
At Upper Deck we love opportunities for our fans to get up close and personal with their favorite athletes. And perhaps there is no place better to do that than at the National Sports Collectors Convention. This year it will be taking place in Baltimore, Maryland from Wednesday, August 1 through Sunday, August 5. If you have never been before, take a look at what you are missing by clicking HERE!
There are a variety of ticket packages you can grab, but the VIP packages offer certain perks like free autograph opportunities, access to special events and of course a gift bag with some very collectible items. And only Upper Deck could bring fans some of the most collectible players on the planet with a very limited six-card set that will be available to VIP members. Take a look:
To grab your VIP tickets for the 2012 National Sports Collectors Convention, click HERE! Upper Deck will be announcing quite a few more details for the show here on the Upper Deck Blog including a look at some of the autograph cards available in the wrapper redemption program at UD’s corporate booth and a special announcement with regard to collector redemptions.
My mom entered me into a promotion sponsored by Upper Deck trading cards to be a Draft Runner at the 2012 NHL Draft in Pittsburgh. I didn’t know she had done this and when she told me that we won while on vacation, I wanted to go home right away so I could tell all my friends. I am a HUGE hockey fan so for me, this was a dream come true.
My 2012 NHL Draft experience began on Wednesday when I went to the Consol Energy Center to obtain my credential. At that moment it suddenly all felt very real, I was going to be a part of one of the biggest NHL events of the year!
And then I got my first taste of what it’s like to be a player in the NHL as I got to spend some time with the media. I was interviewed by Meredith Qualls of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review for a story on how I won the Upper Deck Draft Runner Contest. That evening I was asked to be on Card Board Connection Radio with Rob Bertrand and Doug Cataldo. I was a little nervous at first then I felt better as I realized it was just talking about my family and hockey. It was my first time on the radio; awesome!
On Thursday I attended the NHL Runner’s meeting to learn about my duties, schedule and dress code. I was thrilled to be assigned to the Tampa Bay Lighting team! My 2 favorite players from the Lightning are Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis. Only the media was at Consol at that point so after the meeting we were allowed to walk around. You could feel the energy in the arena as I realized every NHL coach, general manager and all the draft picks would be here in less than twenty four hours.
It was also very cool to walk through the entrance to the Pittsburgh Penguins tunnel where they enter and exit during game time. My mom and I walked around the entire arena checking everything out. I was so excited that I had a hard time sleeping Thursday night. I called all of my family and friends to have them record the NHL Draft just in case they could catch a glimpse of me.
I woke up on Friday and realized this was the big day. I did not have to report to the arena until 6:00 p.m. so it felt like the longest day of my life! Ray Fittipaldo from The Pittsburgh Post Gazette called and requested an interview before the Draft. I could get used to all this attention!
Before the 2012 NHL Draft began, I went to the Dick’s Sporting Goods booth to try out the new CCM Taylor Made Hockey stick – it was unbelievable! I shot a puck 48 MPH! I stopped to see Ken Amorosa at Steel City Collectibles who my mom submitted my entry through. He got a big hug for helping me get this opportunity!
I dropped in to introduce myself in person to Cardboard Connection Radio with Rob and Doug and they put me on the air! And last, but not lest, I stopped by the Upper Deck Booth to thank Dianne and Ryan for the great opportunity. Diane gave me a ton of hockey cards, what a great way to expand my collection! Dianne had an Upper Deck NHL Draft card made of me in a Penguins jersey right on the spot. I was so pumped!
It was time to start my duties so off to the Consol Energy floor I went! My mom gave me a big hug and gave me some instructions, “Be a gentleman, use your manners and enjoy ever minute of this!” I walked over to the Tampa Bay Lightning table and the introduced myself to Guy Boucher (Tampa Bay Head Coach), Steve Yzerman (Vice President and General Manager), Pat Verbeek (Assistant General Manager and Director of Player Personnel) and Al Murray (Director of Amateur Scouting). Never in a million years would I have thought I would be sitting at a table with Steve Yzerman; boy was I intimidated! I kept my cool, but I was really nervous.
The Tampa Bay Lightning executives and staff made me feel right at home with them. Mr. Murray in particular was very nice and asked me a lot of questions. My main duties were to deliver refreshments for the table. All of the draft selections are electronic now so I didn’t have to run a paper back and forth to the main NHL desk any longer.
Tampa Bay had 2 picks in the first round and took Slater Koekkoek at #10 and Andrei Vasilevski at #19. These are names I am still learning to pronounce. It was exciting waiting to see who would be drafted to each team and watching the family’s expressions as their relative’s names were announced. I did whatever I was asked and it was a really awesome experience. At the end of the night, I thanked all the Tampa Bay guys and told them I would see them in the morning.
As I was going to meet my mom, I looked up and there stood my favorite NHL player of all time; Mario Lemieux! I was in shock! I told him, “I love you and I love hockey!” Mario said, “I love hockey too buddy.” Luckily my mom was right there and took a picture. It was a moment I will never forget.
As any good card collector knows, never leave home without your favorite player’s cards because you never know when you might meet them. As luck would have it, I was prepared!
I also met Dan Bylsma, Head Coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins. I informed him I am attending his hockey camp in July. He said, “I’ll be looking for you!” Friday night was one of the most memorable nights of my life. I could not wait to see what Saturday would bring.
I had to be at the arena 9:00 a.m. I stopped by the Upper Deck booth to check in with Dianne and to tell her about my experiences from the night before. I went to the floor and resumed my duties for Tampa Bay. While walking the floor, I bumped into Billy Guerin who is a retired Pittsburgh Penguin and current Player Development Coach for the Pens. It was another “wow” moment for me.
All of their draft-picks came by our table to meet the executives and the coaching staff. I was able to meet them also and they signed my Tampa Bay jersey! Maybe one of them will be the next Vincent Lecavalier!
Thank you mom for entering my in this contest. Thank You Steel City Collectibles for submitting the entry. Thank you Upper Deck for offering me this once in a lifetime experience that I will never forget! Thank you Tampa Bay Lightning for letting me serve as your Draft Runner! And thank you Pittsburgh for hosting an amazing NHL Draft!