A Hockey Hobby: How to Get Started Collecting NHL Trading CardsBy
If you are a hockey fan looking for a great hobby, then you should take a long, hard look at collecting NHL cards from Upper Deck. We are heading into a Double Rookie Class event for next season so now is the perfect time to start as you can capture twice the amount of great rookie content in one year’s worth of trading card products.
There are numerous advantages to collecting NHL cards over other sports. There are so many great players in the league that it is easy to find a favorite player or players to collect. Many fans love collecting memorabilia cards of their favorite teams which is great because hockey jerseys have some of the most beautiful and premium jerseys to be used on these unique cards. And nothing brings you closer to the game than scoring an autograph card from your favorite player!
Additionally you have an international fan base for hockey cards with die-hard puck lovers in the U.S.A., Canada and Europe in particular. In this age of computers, many hockey collectors engage each other and even conduct trades online through hobby related websites and message boards. Collecting hockey cards is an international experience!
And perhaps most importantly, it is a hobby that is best enjoyed with friends and family. Collecting is a hobby that provides friends and family to bond while putting together sets and chasing their favorite player’s cards. We have shared how families have enjoyed bonding over hockey cards in the past so if you are a father who loves sports, this is a perfect hobby for you to share with your children.
But one of the biggest concerns we hear from fans thinking about getting involved in the hobby is, “How do I get started?” Yes, collecting cards can be a little overwhelming and like anything, it takes some time to learn the art of the trade, etc. We asked members of Upper Deck’s Volunteer Alliance to provide some tips for fans who are thinking about getting involved in the hobby and here is what they had to say:
“I would start off with products like Upper Deck and O-Pee-Chee. Don’t jump into high-end products as you may get lost. These products offer a lot of cards at a reasonable price.” – Matthew G.
“The most important aspect of collecting is determining what will make you the happiest to collect. Do you want to collect a certain player, a team or a particular set? I think a great product to start with is Upper Deck Series One and Two NHL cards. These boxes are loaded with everything from Young Guns rookie cards, to memorabilia cards to autographs. For collectors who like variety, these are products that deliver.” – Luis M.
“I think it is important to know that there is generally much better content in the hobby product than the retail versions of the product. I know when I first started I was just looking for the best price without realizing that the hobby product, while a bit more expensive, delivered much better value.” - Kyle M.
“Every person has their own way of collecting. Some like autographs while others go after certain players, that’s what makes collecting so much fun. New collectors should look before they buy and read the box to see what each set has to offer. And since every collector is different, there are always collectors looking for cards that may not be desirable to you. There are groups online where you can trade to get the cards you are after.” – Marty M.
“The biggest thing about being out of the game for awhile is getting a feel for the values again. If you undervalue your cards you could get ripped off and if you overvalue them, collectors will feel insulted by what you are asking for on them. The best way to get a refresher on values is to check completed listings on eBay for similar cards you have in your collection.” - Alex V.
“Being new to hockey myself, look for a team you like and get to know the players with trading cards. Follow them and the team on Twitter and Facebook. Read up on them and try to get your cards signed by the players after games. It makes collecting that much better when you have met the players and have that connection with them.” - Tim Y.
“Familiarize yourself with team or players you like and start small. Interacting with people on forums and not being afraid to say you are new to the hobby is a good way to get to know others and get more advice on how to build a big collection. If you are getting back into the hobby after some time off, do your research online to see what has changed and what some of your cards are worth now. And have fun with it!” – Griffin G.
And as you get started, you’ll want to make sure you space for your collectibles which means dedicating a little space for them. Most collectors have a room or at least a closet dedicated to their collections. The most important thing there is that they are stored in a safe are that is not too hot or too cold and is high enough to avoid issues with flooding or little hands if there are youngsters in the house. Take a look at Upper Deck’s Ultimate Fan showing off his collection of hockey memorabilia and cards!