Friday, August 26, 2011

Ted Drury Autograph Card

With the sad news of Chris Drury retiring, I thought I'd talk about this signed insert card of his older brother, former NHLer Ted Drury, from Classic's 1994-95 Classic set, which never made the Beckett price guide because it wasn't licensed by the NHL nor the NHLPA - and perhaps also because they were cheaply made and as thin as cardboard can get before it's simply called ''paper''.

It is numbered 827/1920, which Classic still dares to say is a ''limited edition''. Yes, this signed version is ''limited'' to less than 2000 - bravo. How many of the original card did you print? And why does the whole back have to be the proof/guarantee, why can't the autographed version also have Drury's stats or at least a mention of which team he was playing for or drafted by?

In this instance, Drury's wearing Team USA's colours, either from the World Juniors or the National Team, which he was a part of for two seasons. It should be mentioned that before the NHL's players were allowed to play in the Olympic games, most countries (a notable exception was the USSR, who sent a combination of the Moscow Central Red Army team and other star players) had a year-long National Team program where players practiced year-long and played friendly games against low-level professional games to get ready for the next Games.

Drury played for those teams while he attended Harvard University, where he played 3 seasons after being drafted by the Calgary Flames in 1989. He only spent half the 1993-94 season with the Flames, as he was traded to the Hartford Whalers in mid-season. After spending the 1995-96 season with the Ottawa Senators, he spent just over 3 seasons with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks - his longest tenure with a single team, ever - before bouncing around with 3 more NHL teams, 2 AHL teams and 3 German teams before reiring in 2007.

Despite moving around like a prison escapee on the run, Ted Drury still managed to put up decent checking-line numbers everywhere he went, as can be attested from these statistics:

-  93 points and 367 penalty minutes in 414 NHL games
- 121 points in 74 NCAA games
- 30 points and 33 penalty minutes in 69 AHL games
- 168 points and 384 penalty minutes in 252 DEL games

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