Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Daniel Marois Autographed Card

Of course, I have a pretty strict No Leafs rule, but every rule has a few exceptions. One exception is if a foreigner worthy of mention played his whole career with the Leafs - it's not Borje Salming's fault, he didn't know any better and never got traded. Another exception is a local-boy who is unlucky enough to get drafted by them and has amazing career seasons there and I can't find a decent card of him in any other uniform.

Such is the case for Daniel Marois. By the time the Toronto Maple Leafs sent him packing to the New York Islanders, he was no longer an impact player and had fewer and fewer cards of him made. And we're talking about a guy who scored 31 goals in his rookie season and 39 the next!

The Montréal native, who played most of his junior career with his hometown Junior Canadiens, never again played a full season after the Leafs shipped him off, playing a grand total of 40 NHL games with the Islanders spread over two seasons, 22 with the Boston Bruins in 1993-94 and only 3 with the Dallas Stars two years later. After a stint in the IHL, he elected to play in Europe for the remainder of his pro career, mostly in Switzerland. He did come back home to play semi-pro with the Verdun Dragons in 2004-05, scoring 14 goals and gathering 37 points in 31 games.

This card was fresh from a pack of Topps' 1991-92 Stadium Club set (card #197), an odd picture showing him in the Leafs' blue 80s-era blue jersey where he is shot from the back and barely covers half the card, as if Topps preferred showing the boards 40 feet away than the goalie he was right next to. It was signed by him, in person, using a black sharpie, at one of the Dragons' local games in the winter of the 2004-05 season.

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