Thursday, August 7, 2014

Valeri Bure Autograph Card

I had already crossed #18 of my Habs Numbers Project with this signed framed lithograph of Hall Of Famer Serge Savard, but if I end up making it harder on myself and count only signed cards, then this Valeri Bure card from the 1995-96 Be A Player set (#S34 in the series manufactured by Upper Deck, signed in thin black sharpie with his number tagged at the end) would become the one that counts:
It shows him wearing the Montréal Canadiens' white (then-home) uniform, without the team's logo showing (for copyright reasons), probably making a pass - and judging by the spectators not staring in the puck's direction the way Bure is, I'd say the picture was probably taken during warm-ups.

Bure has also worn #20 on the Habs, in a career that saw him spend time with the Calgary Flames, Florida Panthers, St. Louis Blues and Dallas Stars as well. He played in one All-Star Game, representing the Flames in a season in which he posted 35 goals, 40 assists and 75 points - all career highs - in 1999-2000. He reached the 20-goal mark six times, finishing his NHL career with 174 to go with 226 assists and 400 points in 621 games.

He was less productive come playoff time, with no goals and just 7 assists in 22 games. Those statistics match his international record, where his senior stats read 5 goals, no assists in 19 games; he was part of Team Russia's bronze-winning team at the 1994 World Juniors, and has two Olympic medals, silver (1998) and bronze (2002).

As a player, he and his wife owned a café in Florida, which they closed when he stopped playing for the Panthers; upon retiring, the family moved to California and opened a winery. Recently, it has been his wife, former Full House actress Candace Cameron Bure, grabbing headlines, admitting last January to being submissive to her husband and letting him have final say all the time, and about a month ago opening up about the couple's sex life. They are devout Christians. Valeri also has a brother who played in the NHL, Hall Of Famer Pavel Bure.

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