Thursday, August 15, 2013

Nik Antropov Dual Jersey Card

In the trade that netted me this Montréal Canadiens triple-swatch and this Detroit Red Wings dual swatch, one card I made sure to keep was this Nikolai Antropov card:


Sure, it's a card of him with the Toronto Maple Leafs, a team I try to avoid at all costs. In my hierarchy of teams, it's Habs first, then a thought for my former-favourite Québec Nordiques, then teams Wayne Gretzky played for in chronological order, then the American Original Six teams plus the Colorado Avalanche, then the Canadian teams except the Leafs, then the rest of the American teams, followed by the AHL teams, the KHL and all European teams, the ECHL teams, the LNAH, Junior teams, beer-league teams, then people who don't play but watch on TV, then those who don't watch but read some box scores in the papers, then (...), then golf, then cricket, then (...), then lawyers, then politicians, then insects, then, perhaps the Leafs.

But my first 'hit' after nearly a decade of not purchasing cards was of this gentle giant - and I'll feature it as soon as I unpack it. But I decided to collect him despite the Leafs thing.

He signed a two-year deal with Astana Barys of the KHL last weekend. As a Habs-killer, I'm not so sad to see him leave, but it's too bad it had to be the way he did - after a season misused as sometimes the third-line center (a role that should have been reserved for under-producing Olli Jokkinen), gathering 18 points in 40 games with the lowly Winnipeg Jets. He didn't get the offers he was expecting on this side of the pond, so he went to Russia with the hopes of reviving his career - perhaps with an Olympic medal in tow.

I got a six-card return from him a year ago.

This card was from Upper Deck's 2005-06 SPx set (card #WM-NA of the Winning Combos insert set, numbered 177/350); it features a nice, dark blue swatch and a white one, both official Leafs colours.

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