One of my surprising returns this year is from David Backes. I’m not sure 100% why I figured that I wouldn’t get this one back in the mail but I’m pretty happy that it came back (of course, like all others). David was gracious enough to return my fan mail in 41 days c/o Boston Bruins and signed in a nice silver sharpie. For this particular card, I’d much rather have had him sign in a blue sharpie as I think the silver is a little light and hard to see, especially against a white jersey.
David originally entered the NHL through the NHL entry draft through the 2003 entry draft which has produced so many exceptional NHL players. He was drafted by his former team, the St.Louis Blues in the 2nd round, which consisted of other star draftees such as Shea Weber, Corey Crawford and Patrice Bergeron. If you’ve been following the NHL, David used to captain the Blues but decided to part ways at the end of his contract and sign with the Boston Bruins on a 5 year deal which will see him (theoretically, pending any trades / buyouts / etc) play through to the 2020 / 2021 NHL season.
With David being firmly in the East, I don’t get to watch him much but do know he’s a tough competitor. Watch below as David hits his fellow US teammate Dustin Brown.
I sent this jersey card, along with a few other cards to Dougie Hamliton of the Calgary Flames and one of the few players that signed for me very quick at the beginning of the year. As seen in the photo to the left, Dougie personalized it for me.
So far this year, the Flames are doing decently well but still sitting two points out of a playoff spot, having a 4-4-2 record over the last 10 games. Something is going to need to change over the second half of the season as they haven’t had any major injuries to core players like other teams have had. Dougie will have to be a major cog in resurrecting this team from mediocrity to cup contender. They have the pieces to do so, with young talent like Matthew Tkachuk and Sean Monahan.
Currently, Dougie isn’t the only Hamliton on the team, his brother Freddie has made an appearance in 8 games this season.
Date sent: September 13, 2017
Date received: October 4, 2017
Total time: 21 days
Total players responses: 549
Total 2017 responses: 8
I got my first actual, tracked, return in 2017 from stay at home defenseman, Andrew Alberts. Having last played for the Vancouver Canucks back in 2013, I automatically took a liking to Andrew. His style of play was not that of a highly touted, immensely skilled prospect but that of a hard nosed, physical type grizzled player. Being a fan of Vancouver, we have always had a moniker of being “too soft” so Andrew was a good fit for a team that lacked size.
I wrote to Andrew, wishing him all the best and stated that I wish he was still in the NHL, to which he replied with a note back saying “I wish I was still playing as well.”. Due to concussion issues, Andrew was unfortunately forced into retirement in 2013/14 season.
Date sent: June 22nd, 2011
Date received: November 1st, 2011
Total time: 132 days
Total players responses: 350
Total 2011 responses: 345
Big Adam McQuaid plays for the big, bad Bruins. Standing at 6’4, he’s a tall guy, and will hopefully full into his frame and become as big as Zdeno Chara. He gracefully signed this Victory Rookie card in a nice black sharpie pen. Thanks Adam, but I’m still pissed your Boston Bruins beat my Vancouver Canucks!
Date sent: June 28th, 2011
Date received: August 9th, 2011
Total time: 42 days
Total players responses: 291
Total 2011 responses: 286
I’m starting up my blog again, now that the season is officially here! What better way to kick off a new hockey season with BC boy Milan Lucic, also Stanley Cup winner, who sent me some returns from my June 28th, USA trip where I sent dozens of letters out! I’m quite happy he signed this Artifacts card, as I love the design, and provides a perfect place for players to sign. Clean, and neat, Milan put his auto in the right place. Thanks Milan!
Received: June 10th, 2011
Total players responses: 255
Total 2011 responses: 250
Bobby Orr. Honestly, what more can I say? I’m pretty damn happy I got this auto, cuz we all know I ain’t getting this one in the mail!