By Karine Hains aka Pheebs888

In life it’s impossible to please everyone and the same applies to the hobby. Whatever it is that the card manufacturers do, there will always be people who will be happy and people who will criticize not one product or idea will please everyone. This is an undeniable fact and no one will ever be able to change that but if the card companies wanted to please me, or if I worked for say Upper Deck, here’s what I would do…

Currently the market is saturated with numerous releases which are more or less rather similar. SPX, SPA, SPGU there’s not much difference between those products but back in 2008-2009 Upper Deck released the Legends Masterpieces set. Now there was a set with a difference! The base cards were all paintings of players who were deemed legends of the NHL. Furthermore, there were five parallel version of each card; brown, blue, red, green and black borders. The borders being in essence mini-frames around the painting. Sure, there were some quality control issues as some of the borders were damaged but once you managed to chase all the cards, it made for a very good looking set. When I interviewed Chris Carlin of Upper Deck at the 2009 National Sports Card Collectors Convention in Cleveland, I was rather disappointed to find out that the Legends Masterpieces product would not be returning in 2009-2010 and it is not in the cards this season either. According to Mr. Carlin: “There are only so many memorable moments that can be depicted on these kinds of cards and it makes it quite hard to release those on a regular basis”.

Personally, I would bring back the Masterpieces concept but with a twist, I would launch NHL Masterpieces by the Numbers. Do you remember the Upper Deck card of the early 90s which was a drawing of Wayne Gretzky with his number and a few trophies shown? (pictured on the left). I would take the same approach for the Masterpieces By the Numbers base set. My base set would include the best players to ever wear each number in the NHL so it would comprise of 100 cards (00 to 99) and feature the cream of the crop. Some choices would be obvious such as Gretzky at 99, Lemieux at 66, Roy at 33 but others would be trickier for instance who was the best number 11? Was it Mark Messier? Was it Gilbert Perreault or was it Mike Gartner? To get collectors more involved I would run a voting campaign on the Upper Deck website were they could vote for who would be featured on each card for say a month. At the end of this period, the final checklist for the base set would be established and contact could be make with various artist to start on the design of the various cards. I would keep the parallel colored schemed border versions of the cards as well because they are one further characteristic which makes that product special.

As for autographs and memorabilia sets, the Masterpieces Brushstrokes autographs should also return with limited numbers of autographed version of the base cards. For the Canvas Clipping game used cards, I would like to see a painting of when a players’ number was retired in the background and the usual piece of jersey. This set could be called “Retired Canvas Clippings”.As for inserts without a memorabilia piece I would have a 00 to 99 set called “The Candidates” where each card would feature the candidates which were submitted to the fan voting. So say, card 7 could feature Paul Coffey, Phil Esposito and Howie Morenz. That way, if your choice of best number 7 didn’t make it in the final set, you would at least be able to get them in the insert set.

I think this release could really be interesting and it could teach anyone a bit about the players that played in the NHL. Some choices would be obvious but how many players have worn for instance number 84? You guessed it, only two,Guillaume Latendresse with the Montreal Canadiens and Grabovski with the Leafs. By default, one of those would be included in the set and that is what would make the set interesting, it would be a mix of superstars and surprise additions. Such a product would be a great way to mix modern era players and legends together, providing something for everyone. I can just imagine how impressive a display this set could make in a neat frame on a wall, it would be like looking at a piece of NHL history.

As I said at the start of this article, it is impossible for one single idea to please everyone but if I had the means to implement my own idea this is what I would be going for. Have you got a better one? If you do, feel free to write on it and let us know by entering the SCF writing contest!

In life it’s impossible to please everyone and the same applies to the hobby. Whatever it is that the card manufacturers do, there will always be people who will be happy and people who will criticize not one product or idea will please everyone. This is an undeniable fact and no one will ever be able to change that but if the card companies wanted to please me, or if I worked for say Upper Deck, here’s what I would do…
Currently the market is saturated with numerous releases which are more or less rather similar. SPX, SPA, SPGU there’s not much difference between those products but back in 2008-2009 Upper Deck released the Legends Masterpieces set. Now there was a set with a difference! The base cards were all paintings of players who were deemed legends of the NHL. Furthermore, there were five parallel version of each card; brown, blue, red, green and black borders. The borders being in essence mini-frames around the painting. Sure, there were some quality control issues as some of the borders were damaged but once you managed to chase all the cards, it made for a very good looking set. When I interviewed Chris Carlin of Upper Deck at the 2009 National Sports Card Collectors Convention in Cleveland, I was rather disappointed to find out that the Legends Masterpieces product would not be returning in 2009-2010 and it is not in the cards this season either. According to Mr. Carlin: “There are only so many memorable moments that can be depicted on these kinds of cards and it makes it quite hard to release those on a regular basis”.
Personally, I would bring back the Masterpieces concept but with a twist, I would launch NHL Masterpieces by the Numbers. Do you remember the Upper Deck card of the early 90s which was a drawing of Wayne Gretzky with his number and a few trophies shown? (picture below). I would take the same approach for the Masterpieces By the Numbers base set. My base set would include the best players to ever wear each number in the NHL so it would comprise of 100 cards (00 to 99) and feature the cream of the crop. Some choices would be obvious such as Gretzky at 99, Lemieux at 66, Roy at 33 but others would be trickier for instance who was the best number 11? Was it Mark Messier? Was it Gilbert Perreault or was it Mike Gartner? To get collectors more involved I would run a voting campaign on the Upper Deck website were they could vote for who would be featured on each card for say a month. At the end of this period, the final checklist for the base set would be established and contact could be make with various artist to start on the design of the various cards. I would keep the parallel colored schemed border versions of the cards as well because they are one further characteristic which makes that product special.
As for autographs and memorabilia sets, the Masterpieces Brushstrokes autographs should also return with limited numbers of autographed version of the base cards. For the Canvas Clipping game used cards, I would like to see a painting of when a players’ number was retired in the background and the usual piece of jersey. This set could be called “Retired Canvas Clippings”.As for inserts without a memorabilia piece I would have a 00 to 99 set called “The Candidates” where each card would feature the candidates which were submitted to the fan voting. So say, card 7 could feature Paul Coffey, Phil Esposito and Howie Morenz. That way, if your choice of best number 7 didn’t make it in the final set, you would at least be able to get them in the insert set.
I think this release could really be interesting and it could teach anyone a bit about the players that played in the NHL. Some choices would be obvious but how many players have worn for instance number 84? You guessed it, only two,Guillaume Latendresse with the Montreal Canadiens and Grabovski with the Leafs. By default, one of those would be included in the set and that is what would make the set interesting, it would be a mix of superstars and surprise additions. Such a product would be a great way to mix modern era players and legends together, providing something for everyone. I can just imagine how impressive a display this set could make in a neat frame on a wall, it would be like looking at a piece of NHL history.
As I said at the start of this article, it is impossible for one single idea to please everyone but if I had the means to implement my own idea this is what I would be going for. Have you got a better one? If you do, feel free to write on it and let us know by entering the SCF writing contestIn life it’s impossible to please everyone and the same applies to the hobby. Whatever it is that the card manufacturers do, there will always be people who will be happy and people who will criticize not one product or idea will please everyone. This is an undeniable fact and no one will ever be able to change that but if the card companies wanted to please me, or if I worked for say Upper Deck, here’s what I would do…
Currently the market is saturated with numerous releases which are more or less rather similar. SPX, SPA, SPGU there’s not much difference between those products but back in 2008-2009 Upper Deck released the Legends Masterpieces set. Now there was a set with a difference! The base cards were all paintings of players who were deemed legends of the NHL. Furthermore, there were five parallel version of each card; brown, blue, red, green and black borders. The borders being in essence mini-frames around the painting. Sure, there were some quality control issues as some of the borders were damaged but once you managed to chase all the cards, it made for a very good looking set. When I interviewed Chris Carlin of Upper Deck at the 2009 National Sports Card Collectors Convention in Cleveland, I was rather disappointed to find out that the Legends Masterpieces product would not be returning in 2009-2010 and it is not in the cards this season either. According to Mr. Carlin: “There are only so many memorable moments that can be depicted on these kinds of cards and it makes it quite hard to release those on a regular basis”.
Personally, I would bring back the Masterpieces concept but with a twist, I would launch NHL Masterpieces by the Numbers. Do you remember the Upper Deck card of the early 90s which was a drawing of Wayne Gretzky with his number and a few trophies shown? (picture below). I would take the same approach for the Masterpieces By the Numbers base set. My base set would include the best players to ever wear each number in the NHL so it would comprise of 100 cards (00 to 99) and feature the cream of the crop. Some choices would be obvious such as Gretzky at 99, Lemieux at 66, Roy at 33 but others would be trickier for instance who was the best number 11? Was it Mark Messier? Was it Gilbert Perreault or was it Mike Gartner? To get collectors more involved I would run a voting campaign on the Upper Deck website were they could vote for who would be featured on each card for say a month. At the end of this period, the final checklist for the base set would be established and contact could be make with various artist to start on the design of the various cards. I would keep the parallel colored schemed border versions of the cards as well because they are one further characteristic which makes that product special.
As for autographs and memorabilia sets, the Masterpieces Brushstrokes autographs should also return with limited numbers of autographed version of the base cards. For the Canvas Clipping game used cards, I would like to see a painting of when a players’ number was retired in the background and the usual piece of jersey. This set could be called “Retired Canvas Clippings”.As for inserts without a memorabilia piece I would have a 00 to 99 set called “The Candidates” where each card would feature the candidates which were submitted to the fan voting. So say, card 7 could feature Paul Coffey, Phil Esposito and Howie Morenz. That way, if your choice of best number 7 didn’t make it in the final set, you would at least be able to get them in the insert set.
I think this release could really be interesting and it could teach anyone a bit about the players that played in the NHL. Some choices would be obvious but how many players have worn for instance number 84? You guessed it, only two,Guillaume Latendresse with the Montreal Canadiens and Grabovski with the Leafs. By default, one of those would be included in the set and that is what would make the set interesting, it would be a mix of superstars and surprise additions. Such a product would be a great way to mix modern era players and legends together, providing something for everyone. I can just imagine how impressive a display this set could make in a neat frame on a wall, it would be like looking at a piece of NHL history.
As I said at the start of this article, it is impossible for one single idea to please everyone but if I had the means to implement my own idea this is what I would be going for. Have you got a better one? If you do, feel free to write on it and let us know by entering the SCF writing contest!

In life it’s impossible to please everyone and the same applies to the hobby. Whatever it is that the card manufacturers do, there will always be people who will be happy and people who will criticize not one product or idea will please everyone. This is an undeniable fact and no one will ever be able to change that but if the card companies wanted to please me, or if I worked for say Upper Deck, here’s what I would do…
Currently the market is saturated with numerous releases which are more or less rather similar. SPX, SPA, SPGU there’s not much difference between those products but back in 2008-2009 Upper Deck released the Legends Masterpieces set. Now there was a set with a difference! The base cards were all paintings of players who were deemed legends of the NHL. Furthermore, there were five parallel version of each card; brown, blue, red, green and black borders. The borders being in essence mini-frames around the painting. Sure, there were some quality control issues as some of the borders were damaged but once you managed to chase all the cards, it made for a very good looking set. When I interviewed Chris Carlin of Upper Deck at the 2009 National Sports Card Collectors Convention in Cleveland, I was rather disappointed to find out that the Legends Masterpieces product would not be returning in 2009-2010 and it is not in the cards this season either. According to Mr. Carlin: “There are only so many memorable moments that can be depicted on these kinds of cards and it makes it quite hard to release those on a regular basis”.
Personally, I would bring back the Masterpieces concept but with a twist, I would launch NHL Masterpieces by the Numbers. Do you remember the Upper Deck card of the early 90s which was a drawing of Wayne Gretzky with his number and a few trophies shown? (picture below). I would take the same approach for the Masterpieces By the Numbers base set. My base set would include the best players to ever wear each number in the NHL so it would comprise of 100 cards (00 to 99) and feature the cream of the crop. Some choices would be obvious such as Gretzky at 99, Lemieux at 66, Roy at 33 but others would be trickier for instance who was the best number 11? Was it Mark Messier? Was it Gilbert Perreault or was it Mike Gartner? To get collectors more involved I would run a voting campaign on the Upper Deck website were they could vote for who would be featured on each card for say a month. At the end of this period, the final checklist for the base set would be established and contact could be make with various artist to start on the design of the various cards. I would keep the parallel colored schemed border versions of the cards as well because they are one further characteristic which makes that product special.
As for autographs and memorabilia sets, the Masterpieces Brushstrokes autographs should also return with limited numbers of autographed version of the base cards. For the Canvas Clipping game used cards, I would like to see a painting of when a players’ number was retired in the background and the usual piece of jersey. This set could be called “Retired Canvas Clippings”.As for inserts without a memorabilia piece I would have a 00 to 99 set called “The Candidates” where each card would feature the candidates which were submitted to the fan voting. So say, card 7 could feature Paul Coffey, Phil Esposito and Howie Morenz. That way, if your choice of best number 7 didn’t make it in the final set, you would at least be able to get them in the insert set.
I think this release could really be interesting and it could teach anyone a bit about the players that played in the NHL. Some choices would be obvious but how many players have worn for instance number 84? You guessed it, only two,Guillaume Latendresse with the Montreal Canadiens and Grabovski with the Leafs. By default, one of those would be included in the set and that is what would make the set interesting, it would be a mix of superstars and surprise additions. Such a product would be a great way to mix modern era players and legends together, providing something for everyone. I can just imagine how impressive a display this set could make in a neat frame on a wall, it would be like looking at a piece of NHL history.
As I said at the start of this article, it is impossible for one single idea to please everyone but if I had the means to implement my own idea this is what I would be going for. Have you got a better one? If you do, feel free to write on it and let us know by entering the SCF writing contest!