Gordie Howe Returns to ITG Trading Cards

The below is a press release from ITG. A nice warm welcome back to Gordie Howe to ITG. A great addition to bolster value in their product.

The game of hockey has seen some incredible legends take to the ice over the years, but there is an elite class of players that go even beyond that in the hearts of fans. One of those players is often simply referred to as Mr. Hockey – Gordie Howe.

In The Game is pleased to announce the long-awaited return of Howe to their products in 2012 and the company is excited to be able to feature him in their celebrated releases.

“It has been several years since Mr. Howe was prominently featured as part of In The Game’s products and we are incredibly pleased to be working with him once again,” said company President Dr. Brian Price. “Our working relationship goes back even farther than that and collectors will be pleased to have an opportunity to get more cards of one of hockey’s greatest icons.”

Howe was part of the first modern era hockey card set from Parkhurst back in 1951-52 and his cards have been highly sought-after ever since. During the 1991-92 season, Dr. Price began working as a sub-licensor under Pro Set and brought back the legendary Parkhurst trading card brand to modern collectors. This extremely popular series not only featured the top stars of the day but also had a special insert set which prominently featured Mr. Howe. At the time, inserts were a relatively new concept with collectors and it was fitting that one of the game’s greatest players be a part of it.

Over the following years, Dr. Price featured Howe in a number of products including collector favorites like the Parkhurst Missing Link. These sets were made up entirely of retired players and paved the way for modern releases, which celebrate the past. Howe was last a part of the In The Game family in 2001-02 and his return to In The Game will allow collectors to obtain all-new cards that celebrate his monumental contributions to the sport.

Howe was born in Floral, Saskatchewan on March 31, 1928 and joined the Detroit Red Wings as an 18-year-old for the 1946-47 season. He quickly became one of the NHL’s top stars and led his club to four Stanley Cup championships in the 1950s. Over 25 seasons in the Motor City, Gordie became the league’s all-time leader in games played, goals, assists and points before retiring for the first time at the end of the 1970-71 campaign. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame soon after.

After two seasons on the sidelines, Howe returned to action with the Houston Aeros of the World Hockey Association and played alongside two of his sons, Mark and Marty. Over the course of six WHA campaigns, the trio ranked among hockey’s biggest stars and he continued to put up strong numbers. They signed with the New England Whalers in 1977 and went back to the NHL two years later as members of the expansion Hartford Whalers. The 1979-80 season was his last but he would skate in his final NHL All-Star Game and made a memorable return to Detroit to score his 801st and final regular season goal on April 6, 1980.

Despite retiring soon after, Howe was still active in the hockey world and once the sports memorabilia industry took off, he became a popular show guest. In 1997-98, he became the first player to skate in a professional game in six different decades when he took to the ice with the Detroit Vipers of the International Hockey League. In 2008, he became the first person to be awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by the NHL. Adored by fans everywhere, his career is spoken of in reverent tones for being a complete player that could score, lead and play without fear.

Collectors can expect to find autograph and game-used memorabilia cards of Howe in many of the products that are part of In The Game’s 2012 lineup starting with Heroes and Prospects, which releases on February 23. 


Preview: 2011-12 ITG Enforcers Hockey

Who is your favorite hockey enforcer of all-time? My personal favorite would have to be Tie Domi of the Toronto Maple Leafs. His antics on and off the ice are that of a legend. Who else would knock someone out for calling him “Tie Dummy” on the ice?

Well I don’t know if Tie Domi will be in this set (I do now! And he’s in!), but when ITG Enforcers hockey comes out on January 19th, 2012, you will find a ton of the all-time great enforcers of the NHL. Players like Donald Brashear, Marty McSorely, or Tiger Williams will be featured in this set of pure brawn.

Each box of 2011-12 Enforcers hockey will feature 5 autographs of your favorite fighters. I wonder how they can sign their names with such fists of steel, but somehow Dr. Price got it done. You can also find 2 memorabilia cards per box as well featuring insert sets like Instigator, Combatants (dual), Fight Strap (#d/8), Fight Strap (1/1), and Tough Franchise (quad).

There will also be 5 limited base cards in each box with subsets like Record Holders, Tale of the Tape, Bloody Battles, and Tough Franchise.

There will only be 12 cards per box of this powerful product that packs a punch to the parietal.

All alliteration aside, this product will come with a limited run and only sent to those distributors who pre-order the product, so make sure your local shop knows you want to grab this product, pull it’s sweater over it’s head, and unleash a series of uppercuts.

And I have to say, I love the design with the drops of blood on the borders of the card and the autographs over the band-aids. Very nice touch.

For more information you can visit the ITG blog where it has a ton of info. Want the autographed and game used checklist?


ITG Signs Exclusive Agreement with Artist Jared Kelley

Do you not know who Jared Kelley is? Well you should.

Have you seen those amazing U.S. President cards from 2011 Goodwin Champions by Upper Deck? The ones that are hand painted on the cards? That’s Jared Kelley’s work. Simply put, those cards are amazing looking and sell for a pretty penny on the secondary market.

Well Dr. Price over at In The Game trading cards has signed an exclusive agreement with Jared Kelley for Sport Kings and ITG trading cards. His first assignment with Dr. Price’s companies will be with Sports Kings Series E which will release in the spring of 2012.

So if you are into the beautiful artwork that Jared Kelley does, look for more of his work coming out soon in trading cards by ITG/Sport Kings.

Preview: ITG Ultimate Memorabilia 11th Edition

So with the reviews, previews, and all that fun stuff finishing up with The Cup and Dominion, Dr. Price over at In The Game has decided to show us some of the amazing cards he has in store for ITG’s high end product, Ultimate Memorabilia 11th Edition.

Dr. Price’s blog, According to Dr. Price, has a great preview of some cards available when that product releases on November 10th.

When it releases, each pack will feature 1 base card, 1 Ultimate autographed card, and 1 Ultimate memorabilia card. Each box will contain 5 packs. You will be able to find some of the nicest memorabilia cards in the industry, along with a solid checklist of autographs and cut autographs.

But not only will this product have it’s usual autographs and memorabilia cards, this year collectors will have the opportunity to pull and win one of 10 Ultimate Giveaway cards, each one depicting a different piece of game used memorabilia. There are six of each of these giveaway cards which gives you the opportunity to win that piece of memorabilia. They will also be invited to a Spin to Win event at the 2012 Toronto Expo. What’s even better is that even if you don’t win the piece of memorabilia, you won’t be going home empty handed. Everyone who pulls a card will automatically get a 1/1 sketch card featuring that player. So a cool little addition Dr. Price has added to his product.

You can find all the information you need on this product here on the ITG website. And make sure you check out Dr. Price’s blog post above to see some sweet cards inserted into this set.

Here is more information on Ultimate Memorabilia 11 hot packs!

Preview: 2011-12 ITG Canada vs. The World Hockey

I really feel like I don’t give ITG enough credit and don’t cover their products enough. In fact, I really enjoy ITG products although I have never personally opened a box on my own. I’ve been meaning to get a box of 2010-11 ITG Between the Pipes, which I’ve heard and seen is phenomenal, but it seems as if I always get something else.

So today, that ends. ITG will be getting their due from this blog from now on and I will be treating them just like everybody else. So with that, let’s take a look at 2011-12 ITG Canada vs. The World hockey.

Each box of 2011-12 ITG Canada vs. The World hockey comes with 9 cards. This box will feature 4 game used cards, 2 authentic autographs, 1 100 Years of Hockey Card Collecting, and 2 non-memorabilia insert cards.

Some of the greatest international hockey players to ever grace the pond will be featured as autographs in this product like Mario Lemieux, Steve Yzerman, and Pavel Bure. As mentioned, these autographs of international stars will be found at two per box.

You will also find 4 game used memorabilia cards per box including such sets as International Goalies, World’s Best, Canada’s Best, Completely Canadian, Canadian Cloth, and My Country, My Team. This is great for hockey collectors around the world even if you aren’t from the Great White North. As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, ITG does some of the greatest work with memorabilia I have seen. Some of the patches and swatches they use are absolutely amazing, and I believe Dr. Price (the owner) personally picks swatches for all 1/1 cards.

You will continue to find 100 Years of Hockey Card Collecting mini cards in this product as it has been in several brands throughout the year. And finally, you will find a couple general inserts like Great Moments and Protecting Canada’s Crease cards, amongst others.

While looking at the sell sheet and some of the images above, this looks like a solid product with some great names in it.

You can find this product in stores on October 6, 2011, at a price I can not quite find yet. But when I find it, I will let you know.