Recently at the 2014 NHLPA Rookie Showcase we were able to spend some time with a variety of NHL® prospects and it was incredibly interesting to see how all the different players interact with Upper Deck Hockey cards. Much like normal collectors, they all have different things they look for and enjoy from opening up trading card packs.
Jacob de la Rose, a second-round pick for the Montreal Canadiens enjoyed putting together a Swedish dream team from his packs as he hails from Sweden and played in the Swedish Elite League.
Also fans of finding players from their home country were Evgeny Kuznetsov and Andrei Vasilevskii who are both from Russia. They were excited to get players like Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin.
And then there were actual players who grew up collecting like Max Domi and Curtis Lazar. Obviously Max inherited a lot of cards as a youngster from his dad Tie who played in the NHL® for a number of years. Curtis on the other hand enjoyed collecting with his little brother and the two still have a pretty large collection today.
Our favorite interaction between NHL® prospects and hockey cards came on the last night of the event. We were at a cool billiards club, but some of the guys wanted to do something a little different. Joey Hishon came up with the ideal to open packs and put together your best line. They opened about 8 packs each before having their lines judged. We asked Joey, “Who gets to judge who as the best line?”
Joey Hishon responded with a smile, “I do. I’m the oldest.”
Joey did judge fair and he was not the winner. Here’s a look at the winning line, this would have been an amazing group to see on the ice together.
Just like collectors have different tastes in how they choose to experience Upper Deck Hockey cards, it appears that so do NHL® rookies. One thing everyone can agree upon though, Upper Deck Hockey cards can be a lot of fun!