Saturday, January 1, 2011

Randy Ladouceur: 3 Autographed Cards

Randy Ladouceur was a heck of a robust stay-at-home defenseman who had a very precise ''first pass'' but somehow often was relegated to being a ''plus'' player because the players he'd pass to made more passes before a goal was eventually scored. Despite often missing upwards of 10 games per season, he managed to accumulate over 100 penalty minutes in 6 different seasons and over 90 in two more. He retired one season short of playing his 1000th game.

A tremendous leader, he would often get more points in the playoffs than in the regular season preceding it; he was the last Detroit Red Wings player to wear #19 before Steve Yzerman, and was named the Hartford Whalers' captain after Ron Francis was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins, which is why I love the three cards above, all depicting him with the 'C' on his chest, all from the Whalers, a defunct team.

The card on the left is from the 1991-92 Pro Set set, Captains sub-set (card #573); the card in the middle is from Score's 1992-93 Score (Bilingual Canadian Edition) set (card #61); and the card on the right is from Pro Set's 1992-93 Parkhurst set (card #289).

He is currently Randy Cunneyworth's assistant with the Hamilton Bulldogs, which is where I sent these cards and my fan letter on November 18th; the cards were sent back, signed clearly in blue sharpie, on December 20th, just a month later, a great return, especially when you factor in the fact that the Randys are a two-man team with no other assistants sharing the workload of teaching the Future Habs the basics of the game and the work ethics of professionals.

In the NHL, he has twice been Paul Maurice's assistant - with the Carolina Hurricanes and the Toronto Maple Leafs.

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