By Karine Hains

Collecting used to be a hobby, it used to be all about fun but lately it just seems like it is a big business which is solely about the money. Personally, I collect two players Patrick Roy and Martin Brodeur. For the hockey fans amongst you, you are very well aware of who these guys are for other sports fans well, let’s just say that these two guys are number 1 and number 2 in total career wins in the NHL. Yup, they are the best of the best there is no doubt. With the star status normally comes the star price tag however and putting my collection came at quite the hefty price.

To a collector, their collection is often priceless until one day, life issues come knocking at your door and you have no choice but to get some money one way or another.  For me, that one way has been selling some of my Brodeur cards. No matter how much I think about it, I absolutely cannot bring myself to part with any of my Roy cards, Brodeur has always been number two for me but right now, he is my number one solution.

To be honest, I thought that my priceless cards were worth more than what the collector’s bible (sense the tone) Beckett says they are.  The first card I sold thankfully did not book in Beckett. It was one of the cornerstones of my collection; a The Cup Rookie Tribute autographed patch numbered to 10 only.  Result? I was able to sell it for 675$ on eBay by listing it as a “Buy it Now or Best Offer”.  I had listed a dual autograph of Brodeur and Lundqvist 6/10 from Upper Deck Black on there as well but received no offer for it, perhaps it had to do with the BIN price which I had set at $250 but it is not easy to put a value on cards. Needless to say, that one did not sell. I have now relisted it as an auction with a starting price of $49.99, so far, 6 watchers but not bid. I listed three more cards for auction as well, all 3 from The Cup. Two of them have been bid on; they both had a starting price of $49.99…who wouldn’t bid on an Honorable Number and a Signature Patch?

I’m now considering which other cards I should list and looking at the value set by Beckett, I’m not so sure I can take the eBay gamble. See, I acquired two cards slowly, over time and on average, the autographed cards cost me about $100 for autographs of Brodeur alone. A while back, I got a card I quite like as a replacement for redemption, it was an OPC Premier Trios autograph numbered to 35. That’s right, 3 autographs, hard-signed of Martin Brodeur, Marc-André Fleury and Carey Price. Now, how much do you think the book value is on that card? It came as a shock to me to find out that it books at 100$. Brodeur is the leader in all-time wins, Price just had a breakout year justifying the confidence the Habs put in him by trading Halak and Fleury is the man in Pittsburgh. So what do I do? Do I list that card on eBay and see what the market value is? What should my starting bid be? Or do I list it as a BIN for $150 hoping that someone will like me think that an autograph of 3 awesome goaltenders is worth more than what THE guide tells us?

I think I’ll wait and see what happens with the 4 cards I have on eBay right now before listing more. It breaks my heart to have to do this but I guess sometimes, you have to do what you have to do. I’m not going to say why I need the money, but I will say this, cherish your collection and remember that there may come a day where you cannot enjoy it anymore and you have to part with it…I think listing the RC Tribute card made me die inside a little…Here’s to a day where I can get a new one!