Saturday, June 4, 2016

To the card show we go!

The end of May is always an exciting time for me. First of all, it's my birthday, and second, it's the Pittsburgh Card Show. This is basically the only show we have. The downfall is, for the hockey collector, it's mostly vintage football and baseball cards. It really doesn't matter to me, I've been going since the early 2000's. My wife usually tags along. I usually make it out on the first day the show opens which is a Friday, but this year my wife and I had things going on and decided to go early on Sunday morning. We arrived about 10 minutes before the doors opened. For people that complain about going to card shows, I ask...why complain? For a guy like me, it's only once a year and I still get that excitement when I walk in just like I did as a kid. I've read similar sports card blogs where the blogger complained about stuff being marked up and the trash that people are selling, but I simply disagree.

Entering the show:

Wallet - $50

Admission fee - $6 each

Once I paid the admission fee that gave me a grand total of $38 to spend.

There is a certain vendor at this show that I typically hit up first. He and his wife are friendly and usually remember my wife and I and he always gives a great deal. So I glanced over to his usual spot which is diagonally left to where the entrance is and there he was. We walked over and I started to sort through his different bins. Below is what I spent .25 cent each on:

2014/15 OPC Platinum Martin Brodeur Rainbow
2015/16 OPC Platinum Tyler Seguin Rainbow

2015/16 OPC Platinum Andrew Ladd Team Logos Winnipeg Jets Die Cut Insert
2015/16 OPC Platinum Claude Giroux Team Logos Philadelphia Flyers Die Cut Insert
1990/91 Upper Deck Trevor Kidd WJC RC
1990/91 Upper Deck Peter Bondra Young Guns RC (Not Pictured - Given away to a friend)
2010/11 SPx Ryan Reaves RC /499
2014/15 SPx Anton Forsberg RC
2015/16 UD Artifacts Ryan Strome Emerald Parallel 18/99 (Jersey #!!)
2015/16 UD Artifacts Adam Henrique Ruby Parallel /399
2015/16 UD Contours Corey Crawford Blue Die Cut Parallel /499
2005/06 Upper Deck Jakub Klepis Young Guns RC (Not Pictured - Given away to a friend)
2015/16 Fleer Showcase Hot Prospects Trios Mark Alt/Petr Straka/Evgeny Medvedev RC /599
2005/06 UD Ultimate Jamal Crawford Blue Parallel /125
1995/96 Topps Finest Jerry Stackhouse RC 

My total came to $3.75, so I still have $34.25 left..

I then started to look in this guys $1 bin and picked out these 4 gems:

2007/08 SP Authentic Future Watch Devin Setoguchi RC Auto /999
2007/08 SPx John Zeiler Spectrum RC /25
2001/02 SP Authentic Notable Numbers Joe Sakic Jersey /1178
2001/02 Pacific Martin Havlat Auto /500 (Not pictured - traded)

My wife even got in on the action and picked out $3 worth of Penguins cards for a friend of our families son who is 9.

After the haul above, that brings my total to $7, which would leave $27.25 left in my pocket...

We walked near where people were lining up for autographs from retired players. There was an older gentleman selling some hockey, baseball and football cards. He also had a 3200 count box filled with cards in toploaders. Nothing was marked with prices, so I just sifted through everything and started picking out what I liked and handing it to my wife. I ended up grabbing these 13 cards and we started negotiating on a price. We ended on $13, which was fine with me. Below is the lot:

2002/03 SPx Trent Hunter RC /999
2007/08 UD Artifacts Yutaka Fukufuji Silver Parallel RC /100
2015/16 UD Trilogy Anthony Stolarz RC /999
2013/14 Upper Deck Young Guns Beau Bennett RC
2013/14 Panini Prizm Tom Wilson RC (Not pictured - given to a friend)
2014/15 SP Authentic Future Watch Colton Sissons RC Auto /999
2008/09 UD Ice Ilya Zubov RC /999
2010/11 SP Authentic Future Watch Evgeny Dadonov RC /999
2000 SPx Ben Petrick RC Auto /1999
1972 Topps Jose Cruz RC
2015/16 SPx Robby Fabbri Rookie Jersey
2015/16 SPx Jake Virtanen Rookie Jersey
2015/16 SPx Nikolai Ehlers Rookie Jersey 


So with $13 more spent, my total left over is at $14.25

My wife and I started walking away when a vendor screamed out to me "Hey dude, do you like fishing?" I was wearing my Fishpond hat, so I walked over to his table and we talked fishing a little bit and I saw in a locked up case on his table that he had some hockey cards. He unlocked the case and handed me a few stacks of hockey cards he had in the case. I went through them and picked out 4 cards and asked how much for the 4 in question and he said, "for those...let's call it $8 since your a fisherman." Sweet! I handed him $8, thanked him and we were on our way.

The 4 cards from the mention above were:

2013/14 Panini Prime Austin Watson Quad Jersey/Auto RC /199
2015/16 Fleer Showcase Hot Prospects Shane Prince Patch Auto RC /499
2013/14 Fleer Showcase Hot Prospects Elias Lindholm 2 Coloer Patch Auto RC /375
2013/14 Panini Select Rickard Rakell Auto RC /399

So $8 more spent means I only have $6.25 left..

I was quickly running out of money and I think my wife was getting terrible bored and impatient and wanted to go to the grocery store, So I decided to look at vendors right in the middle of the show. We walked down that row and I found a guy selling hockey cards. Mostly were overpriced junk like Stephane de Costa RC's marked at $10 and a few Greg Nemisz RC's that were priced at an insane $8! I saw that either his wife, girlfriend or aunt next to him had a 3200 count box filled full of hockey with the words 10 cents each on it. I decided to move away from Mr. Overpriced garbage and see what she had to sell. I went through the first row and picked out 1 card and over the next few, I had 2 more to add. With my wife getting impatient and sighing at being bored, I decided to settle on the 3 cards I picked from the box. The lady smiled and said, "a quarter will do honey." I smiled, thanked her and handed over my lonely quarter. I really don't think she meant for that Daniel Sprong to be in that box, but it was in the middle of a bunch of UD Overtime base, so I guess it was free game - I win there! Here's what I grabbed:

2015/16 UD Overtime Daniel Sprong Blue Wave RC
1990/91 OPC Premier Peter Nedved RC
1990/91 OPC Premier Mike Ricci RC

So, my quarter was now gone...with $6 left, I was pretty content with just leaving, but as we were making our way towards the exit, I ran into a guy I knew. He told me some guy had some sweet hockey cards cheap and pointed over to our right. I asked my wife if we could check it out and then go grocery shopping and her response was priceless, "I guess, I mean it is only once a year..." She's awesome! We venture over to the guy selling hockey and I am really not seeing what my friend was talking about. I mean, he had some older vintage rookies, of Dionne, Brad Park, Gil Perreault, but it wasn't anything I didn't currently own, but then there was a younger guy next to him who had quite a few hockey cards for sale (this must've been the guy he was talking about). My wife starting chatting with the guy about kids and video games, so it gave me some time to burrow through his stash. I wasn't really finding anything until a card caught my eye as something that I could either trade or sell for later. I asked if I could interrupt their conversation and asked the guy how much this card I was interested was. He said, "Well, I'm really just looking over this booth for my buddy, he's out and about right now, but if you got it from this box right here, it's $3." Awesome. I can do that. So I handed him my $3 and my wife and I were ready to head to the grocery store.

2013/14 Panini National Treasures Century Materials Alex Galchenyuk Patch RC /25

Yeah, it's only 1 color, but what do you want for $3? So I spent $35 on cards and $12 on admission and grabbed all of the cards in this post. I think I did ok. Not as good as previous years, but not bad.

Finally, I also was watching an auction that was ending later on that night. In the last minute I put in a ridiculous $16 bid and won this item for less than $11. It's a card I had been wanting since 2006. It's going straight to the PC

2005/06 UD The Cup Gilbert Brule Patch Auto /199

All in all a good day!