Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Milestone Mail: 4,000 Unique NHL Autographs

Only 8 new autographs to show but they bring my total up to exactly 4,000 unique NHL player autographs.  Just over 7,000 players have played in the league since 1918.  I've been collecting autographs for over a decade now and since I'm only 22 the possibility of getting nearly one of every player isn't crazy.  I've also acquired what I have thus far with a minimum wage paying job and with my school ending soon the disposable income for rarer, older signatures, should rise a little.  Of the 4,000 signatures I do have there aren't that many of pre 1950 players.

Andre Deveaux
Drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in 2002, Andre Deveaux didn't make his NHL debut until 2008 as a member of the Toronto Maple Leafs.  Between 2008 and 2012 he played 31 NHL games between the Leafs and New York Rangers.  He netted 2 assists and over 100 penalty minutes.  Although raised in Canada, he's notable for being the first person born in the Bahamas to play in the NHL.

Nicolas Blanchard
Nicolas Blanchard recorded 20 penalty minutes in 9 NHL games with the 2012/2013 Carolina Hurricanes.  The Canes had drafted Blanchard 192nd overall back in 2005.  I picked up this Heroes & Prospects autograph because Blanchard has had a number of RCs released this year but so far none with an autograph.  

Roland Eriksson
Swedish centerman Roland Eriksson spent 3 seasons in North America between 1976 and 1979.  He scored 48 goals and 143 points in 193 NHL games with the Minnesota North Stars and Vancouver Canucks.  He also played 33 games in the WHA with the Winnipeg Jets, scoring 15 points. He was a solid NHL player, finishing 3rd for the 1977 Calder Trophy and representing the North Stars at the 1978 NHL All-Star game.

Jean Hamel
Between 1972 and 1984 Jean Hamel played well over 700 regular season+playoff games in the NHL. The defenceman spent most of his career with the Detroit Red Wings but also played with the St. Louis Blues, Quebec Nordiques and Montreal Canadiens.

Greg Polis
Who was the MVP of the 1973 NHL All-Star game and claimed the annual prize of a new car?  It was Greg Polis.  He also played in the 1971 and 1972 NHL All-Star games, representing the Pittsburgh Penguins. From 1970 to 1980 he played over 600 games in the NHL, dressing with the Penguins, Blues, Rangers and Capitals.

Johan Witehall
From 1998 to 2001 Johan Witehall saw action in 54 NHL games between the New York Rangers and Montreal Canadiens. He recorded 2 goals and 7 points at the NHL level.

Roger Melin
Swedish forward Roger Melin spent a couple seasons in North America during the early 1980s.  He spent most of that time in the minors but did dress in 3 NHL games with the Minnesota North Stars. He's spent the last two decades as a head coach in Sweden. 

Bill Plager
From 1967 to 1976 Bill Plager played nearly 300 regular season+playoff games in the NHL.  His brothers, Bob and Barclay, also played in the NHL and for a while all three played together with the St. Louis Blues. 

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