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The Bad Hockey Card Blog

   This is a fun little project I have been wanting to do for a long time. It really has nothing to do with the league except to give people one more reason to stop by the site on a weekly basis and perhaps provide some comic relief, which is much needed as we know that rec ball hockey is generally some pretty serious shit!

   There is no shortage of terrible hockey cards out there and I am the not-so-proud owner of a bunch of them. So with that said, over the coming weeks and months, I will be marching out numerous examples of photographic misdeeds, oddities and downright "What were they thinking?" moments that should prove quite entertaining.

October 18th, 2016

Do You Mind?

   Here we have yet another entry from "Be A Player", the set that shows the lives of NHL'ers away from the rink. This set typically gives an interesting look at the hobbies and pastimes that players get up to, particularly in the off season. This card, however, just showcases Joe Sakic having lunch. Yep, there's nothing more exciting than seeing how our sporting heroes eat their meals! Joe seems mighty pleased about this photographic encounter too! Who wouldn't be?

October 13th, 2016

"Just A Second Guys!"

   Once again we see the unrelenting action of the NHL on full display! Yes, Zigmund Palffy and Joe Alphabet both showcase their skate tying acumen in a pair of hockey cards that should have hit the cutting room floor. Well, at least we can all relate to how awful it is to have to stop an entire game to fix your damn laces. Should've double knotted those!

October 3rd, 2016

Man Crush

   The UD "Be A Player" brand once put out a subset featuring Roy Firestone (for some reason) entitled "Up Close And Personal". However judging by the look of longing that Teemu Sealanne seems to have in this image, one could get the impression that he really wants to get up close and personal with Roy Firestone! It's okay, Teemu, give in to your man crush!

September 27th, 2016

One Man On An Island

   A dejected Nathan MacKinnon sits all alone on a bench in the dressing room. I'm not sure if this was after his team was eliminated or after he received word of his family pet being run over by the neighbors, but either way it seems like a personal moment that probably shouldn't have become a mass produced piece of cardboard (or canvas in this case?). For heaven's sake, leave the man alone for a damn minute! 

September 20th, 2016


   We've seen some ugly designs in this blog, but this one has to be at the top of any list of unfortunate graphic design concepts. I probably should have put a warning label on this one for anyone that is prone to having seizures. 

September 12th, 2016

Mmmmm... Bagels!

   This is a great card depicting Pat Flatley of the New York Islanders imagining how awesome it would be to eat some delicious bagels. In fact, you can tell by his expression that he's really excited about it! This was a laughable Pinnacle set that had players featured with their hobbies/passions. Apparently Pat owns a delicatessen with his brother, so this all makes some sort of sense, but it's still hard to imagine a little kid getting excited when opening a fresh pack with this bagel related hockey card in it. An elderly Jewish man on the other hand...

September 4th, 2016

Late Bloomer... VERY Late!

   Every now and again some errors seem to sneak through the proofreaders. Sometimes they are amusing in their own way as with this Pro Set Platinum card, featuring an extremely mature Michel Goulet as a "Prospect" despite the fact that he was nearly 15 years into his pro career at the time. The prospects of him putting up the 50 goal seasons he did as a youngster were slim to none at this point. Well, at least this card still had some belief in him!

July 9th, 2016

Yes, These Are Hockey Cards!

   With the NHL and now the NWBHL off for the summer break, the Bad Hockey Card Blog will follow suit and take a short hiatus until September. Fittingly, we will post this entry that perfectly symbolizes a break in the action. The "Be A Player" brand continues to deliver for this blog with yet another head-scratching set of what are supposed to be hockey cards. You probably wouldn't know that from first glance though. They are though, I swear!

June 24th, 2016

Draft Snub

   It's NHL Entry Draft Day! That means it's time to take a look back at that most infamous of moments from the draft's history. I speak, of course, about the Eric Lindros draft snub of the Quebec Nordiques. Though the incident was highly publicized, card companies largely shied away from the controversy... that is execpt for Pinnacle which released this card with Lindros carrying, but not donning the Nordiques jersey. It's seemingly the only card in existence that actually portrays the wild events of that day.

June 19th, 2016

Father Knows Best

   Happy Father's Day, everyone! The NHL is really great these days about getting family involved in events, so there are more than a few hockey cards out there of NHL dads doing the fatherly thing. Here are a few of my favourites.

June 13th, 2016

Of Penguins and Presidents

   With the Pittsburgh Penguins having just claimed another Stanley Cup, and the US Presidential race going absolutely bananas at the moment, what better time than now to unveil this beauty? Here we have Mario Lemieux presenting a jersey and replica Stanley Cup to then president George Bush (uh... the first one). The scene depicted on this Upper Deck card was actually a moment of awkward hilarity. Bush's speech just prior to this moment spoke of the heroics of Mario Lemieux and the leadership of the Mario Lemieux and the talent of Mario Lemieux. Then Lemieux steps up to the podium to present the president with these gifts and a bewildered Bush turns to him and says "And you are...?". Classic Bush!

June 1st, 2016

We're Doing This Now?!

   Robert Reichel seems less than pleased with this impromptu photo session. Yes, the life of an NHL'er isn't always sunshine and rainbows. Sometimes it's autographing hockey sticks in full gear with pushy photographers in your face.

May 25th, 2016

Through The Wormhole

   This is perhaps the most bizarre hockey card in history. What makes it even more special is that this was actually from a set in the early 70's, back before the same old tired shots had been taken a million times, forcing card companies to become more creative. This was an early use of the fisheye lens that would come into heavier circulation in later decades, albeit much more extreme. I'm not sure if this distortion was planned, or perhaps something that just happened and the folks at Topps decided to run with it. Either way, this definitely made for one of the most unique hockey cards of all time! And my final thought is that if Hal 9000 were a hockey fan, is this what he'd see?

May 18th, 2016

Heeeeere's Johnny!

   Jarome Iginla has sure been on his fair share of odd hockey cards, and you can add this one to the mix as well. Here he is busting through a stick rack for some unknown reason. I'm not really sure if this was meant to pay homage to the infamous scene in The Shining where Jack Nicholson sticks his head through the door, but this card certainly gave me some good flashbacks to that moment. In any case, Jarome does sort of look like an axe murderer in this photo, so I guess the shoe fits.

May 12th, 2016

Great Moments In Crotch History

   I have to admit to being taken a little off guard by this Score subset. Why they chose to put these kids in such a... um... compromising position is beyond me. I'm not sure if anybody bothered to do a background check on this photographer or what, but there just seems to be something a little off about these cards.

May 5th, 2016

It Was All A Blur

   This, for some reason, is a card of Dion Phaneuf quickly brushing past a photographer, presumably on his way to the ice, or the locker room, or perhaps to the airport on his way out of town (which may explain why he's moving so fast). You can tell it happened fast because there's not bloody much in focus here, and what we do see of Phaneuf isn't particularly noteworthy. I honestly can't figure out how this picture got the green light to appear on a hockey card. I know Upper Deck has a penchant for using interesting photography, but this isn't interesting so much as just plain bad. It might have earned some marks if you could make out the mantras posted on the wall, the top one of which actually reads "Focus On The Details". Oh, the irony!

April 27th, 2016

Phil Watson - Stoner

   What a fantastic picture this is of Phil Watson while he was coaching the Bruins. He looks like he's baked out of his mind in this shot. Upon closer inspection, it appears that he may have suffered a recent eye injury, and by recent I mean about 10 seconds before this picture was taken. It kind of makes you wonder why they used this one, or at least decided to accentuate what was pretty clearly not his "good side". 

April 20th, 2016

"Now With Cleveland...All Of Them"

   It's a very common site to see recently acquired hockey players with the "Now With ______" notation on them. What you typically don't see, however, is an entire team getting traded on a hockey card. As it happens, this very event unfolded in 1976 as the Oakland Seals, packed up and moved to Cleveland to become the Barons.

April 14th, 2016

Colour (in)Correction

   1987-88 will forever be remembered as the year green went supernova, at least as far as this set is considered. This isn't even an example of a botched airbrush attempt, by the way. Dave Tippett had actually been with the Whalers for the previous four seasons. For whatever reason, the guy in charge of the colour correction on these photos was either colour blind or on crack! It's a problem on every green jersey in the set, be it the Hartford Whalers or Minnesota North Stars. 

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