Friday, August 29, 2014

Peter Mahovlich Jersey Card

Peter Mahovlich was drafted by, started his NHL career with and ended it with the Detroit Red Wings, but will forever be known as a member of the Montréal Canadiens.

In eight and a half season with the Habs, ''Little M'' - then the league's tallest player by a full five inches - had five 35-goal seasons, two 100-point seasons, and won four Stanley Cups.

He was later traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins and had 114 points in 117 games in a year and a half with them, before heading back to Detroit for two seasons, the last one ending with a stint in the AHL's Adirondack Red Wings.

People in my parents' generation saw him play with the Habs, Pens, and Team Canada in the 1972 Summit Series and 1976 Canada Cup; to hear the tales, he was just as important to the mid-1970s Canadiens as Ken Dryden, Guy Lafleur, Jacques Lemaire, Yvan Cournoyer, Steve Shutt and Bob Gainey, and probably deserves to be in the Hall Of Fame - but as electrifying as his end-to-end rushes may have been, 773 points in 884 games might fall a bit short - though 72 in 88 playoff games also has to be factored in.

I also have no qualms about putting him among a list of top-15 Habs centers of all time.

So with that in mind, here's a card from Topps' 2001-02 O-Pee-Chee Archives set (#J-PM of the Authentic Game-Worn Jersey sub-set, also numbered #124 as the original card depicted on the front was):
My usual pet peeve remains: it displays a white jersey swatch while showing him in the Habs' red (then-away) uniform. But I don't think there are any of his old Topps/OPC cards that would have shown him in white anyway, so you make do with what you have, I guess.

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