Where have all the Young Guns gone? Pt 1

3 05 2008

I’m not a big fan of the Young Guns cards that appear evey year in the Upper Deck hockey releases.  I’ve stated previously that short printing provides artifical value to cards that otherwise would be worthless and they actually serve as a turnoff to new collectors who may have otherwise taken an interest in the hobby. 

Back in my 2nd post here at Hand Collated, I said I’d go through the Upper Deck Young Guns and see who’s left playing and who’s never seen an Upper Deck base card since.

Even though the Young Guns short prints started in 1998/99, the inflated value for the cards did not really kick in until the 2000/01 release. So that’s where we’ll start.  I’ll list the card number, the player, current team if still playing, and the number of other releases that player has seen in the Upper Deck base sets.  All information taken from the Internet Hockey Database

Here’s the first 50 players from 2000/01 Upper Deck featured in series 1.

181 Eric Nickulas – Hanover Scorpions, no other Upper Deck releases
182 Serge Aubin – Servette Geneve (Swiss), 2 other releases
183 Keith Aldridge – No longer plays hockey.  No other Upper Deck releases
184 Mike Minard – New Mexico Scorpions.  No other Upper Deck releases
185 Steven Reinprecht – 81 games for Phoenix Coyotes, 46 points.  3 releases from Upper Deck, the last in 03/04, although they did give him a jersey card in the 05/06 release
186 David Gosselin – Szekesfehervar Alba Volan (Austria), no other Upper Deck releases, although in 2004/05 had an SP previously signed auto buyback card.  Imagine the thrill of that pull for all those Alba Volan fans.

187 Andrew “Bubba” Berenzweig – no longer in hockey, no other Upper Deck releases
188 Willie Mitchell  – played 72 games for the Vancouver Canucks, cards in 03/04 and 07/08
189 Colin White – 57 games for the New Jeresy Devils, cards in 02/03 and 06/07

190 Petr Mika – Slovan HC (Czech)  Mika played a total of 3 games for the Islanders in 1990/2000.  He, obviously, has no other Upper Deck releases
191 Steve Valiquette- 13 games with the NY Rangers, posting a 5-3-3 record, a .916 save % and a 2.19 GAA, no other Upper Deck releases
192 Kyle Freadrich – no longer plays, amassed 75 PIMs in 23 total games.  No other Upper Deck releases.
193 Rich Parent – no longer in hockey, no other Upper Deck releases
194 Greg Andrusak – no longer in hockey, no other Upper Deck releases
195 Brent Sopel – 58 games for the Chicago Blackhawks.  Sopel has had a solid if not spectacular career.  Only one other Upper Deck release in 05/06.
196 Matt Pettinger – scored 4 goals in 20 games for Vancouver Canucks.  An 02/03 Upper Deck card.
197 Chris Nielsen – no longer in hockey, played a total of 52 games over 2 seasons.  No other Upper Deck card.
198 Dany Heatley – 71 games, 82 points for the Ottawa Senators.  The first player worthy of a Young Gun status.  Cards every year so far.
199 Matt Zultek- shows no games played in the NHL.  Ever.  Was a 1st round draft pick in 1997 and a 2nd rounder in 1999.  No other releases.
200 Dmitry Afanasenkov – Moscow Dynamo (Russia).  A 06/07 Upper Deck card.
201 Tyler Bouck – Portland Pirates (aargh!).   Also featured on a 2001/02 Upper Deck card.
202 Jonas Andersson – Karpat (Finland).  5 total NHL games, 2 PIMS.  No other Upper Deck base release.   Did, oddly, get a 02/03 UD vintage card.
203 Marc-Andre Thinel – scored 60 pts in 26 games for Rouen (France).  No games played in the NHL.  No other Upper Deck releases.
204 Jaroslav Svoboda – Znojemsti Excalibur Orli (Czech) – saw cards in 02/03, 03/04 and 05/06 while up and down with the Carolina Hurricanes.
205 Josef Vasicek – 81 games, 35 points for the Islanders.  Another solid yet unspectacular player.  Cards in 01/02, 02/03, and 05/06.
206 Andrew Raycroft – 19 games for the Maple Leafs w a .876 save pct.  Actually won the Calder in 2003/04 after a stellar season.   Had a run of Upper Deck cards that ended this season.

207 Juraj Kolnik- played a number of years with the Florida Panthers, last year with Servette Geneve (Swiss).  One Upper Deck card in 05/06.
208 Zdenek Blatny Liberec – Bili Tygri HC (Czech),  No releases.
209 Sebastien Caron – Fritbourg-Gotteron (Swiss), played 2 games in 06/07 for 2 different teams.  03/04 and 05/06 releases.
210 Michael Ryder – 31 pts in 70 games for the Montreal Canadians, an off season after 3 straight 55+ pt campaigns.  Upper Deck has featured him since 03/04.

211 Jason Jaspers – Mannheim Eagles.  9 NHL games, 1 assist.  No more Upper Deck releases.
212 Pavel Brendl – 55+ points in last 2 season for Brynas IF Gavle (Sweeden) – Brendl was the #4 pick in the 1999 draft, but never lived up to potential, registering only 22 points in 78 games.  His run of cards ends in 03/04.
213 Milan Kraft – Karlovy Vary HC (Czech).  After a 40 point effort in 03/04 for the Penguins, played overseas during the lockout and never came back.  His actual RC was in the 1999/00 Upper Deck release.  Never been on one again.
214 Justin Williams – 30 points for the Carolina Hurricanes in 37 games  due to injury.  Prior to that, 2 65+ point seasons.  Featured every year except the 04/05 season.

215 Andreas Karlsson – 4 points, 58 games for Tampa Bay.  No releases since.
216 Herbert Vasiljevs – Krefeld Penguins, averaging around a pt a game last 4 seasons.  No Upper Deck card since.
217 Sergei Vyshedkevich – Moscow Dynamo (Russia).  No cards since.
218 Johnathan Aitken – out of hockey.  The #8 pick in 1996, his numbers show he’s a fighter, not a lover.  Or a scorer.  No cards since.
219 Brandon Smith – Berlin Polar Bears.  No Upper Deck cards since.
220 Jeff Cowan – 46 games, 110 PIMs for the Vancouver Canucks.  Even though Cowan the Brabarian has stayed in the league, never been in a Upper Deck base set since.
221 Steve Brule – Out of hockey.  Played in one NHL playoff game for the Devils in 99/00, which must have merited his Young Gun status.  Played 2 games for Colorado in 02/03.  No cards since.
222 Johan Witehall – No longer in hockey.  No cards, either.
223 Jani Hurme – Malmo Redhawks (Sweeden).  Jani had a decent run with the Senators from 01/02-02/03.  No more Upper Deck sets, though he did have a jersey card in 05/06. 
224 Jean-Guy Trudel – Peoria Rivermen (AHL).  Seems a minor league scorer, but not as strong in the NHL, at least in the 5 games of action he’s seen.  No more cards from Upper Deck.
225 Kaspars Astashenko -Ritten Renon (Italy).   No other Upper Deck cards.
226 Scott Hartnell – 43 pts, 159 PIMS for the Philadelphia Flyers.  Scott was the #6 pick in the 2000 draft, and has had a solid career.  A Upper Deck card a year, except 04/05.
227 Dieter Kochan – Out of hockey, out of Upper Deck releases after his Young Gun debut.

228 Rostislav Klesla- So far spent his career with the Columbus Blue Jackets on the blueline since being taken 4th in the 2000 draft.  A solid force.  Cards every year except 05/06.
229 Marian Gaborik – A career Minesota Wild.  Would be a bigger star if he played elsewhere.  Cards every year.
230 Alfie Michaud – Bremerhaven REV, Alfie played 2 games for Vancouver posting a .815 sv % and a 4.35 GAA.  Upper Deck has not released a card since.

Out of 50 players so far:

  • 14 players still in the NHL
  • 9 players out of hockey entirely
  • 29 players have yet to appear on another Upper Deck base set card

Granted a few of these busts were first round draft picks that didn’t work out, but a number of them are guys who played only an unispiring game or two and before being named a Young Gun.

So there’s part 1.  It took longer than I thought, so the rest of 01/02 will be coming soon.




2 responses

4 05 2008
Where have all the Young Guns gone? Pt 2 « Hand Collated

[…] have all the Young Guns gone? Pt 2 4 05 2008 See the first post for background.   Format remains card number, player, team played for in 07/08, and number of […]

8 05 2008
Where have all the Young Guns gone? Pt 3 « Hand Collated

[…] have all the Young Guns gone? Pt 3 8 05 2008 See parts one and two for more information.  In brief, a rundown of the successes and failures of players named […]

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