Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Nicklas Grossmann Autograph Card

Nicklas Grossmann was much-maligned with the Philadelphia Flyers, particularly last season. ''Fans'' were putting it on in online forums, and even when he wasn't making mistakes nor taking penalties, he just had some asking ''is he a disaster waiting to happen? When will the floor fallfrom under him?''

He's a former winger turned into a defenseman, and has now just had two consecutive 14-point seasons (including 5 goals in 2014-15), and he just finished with a +8 on the worst defense in the league and an anemic offense as well. But his ''possession statistics'' didn't match up to the rest of the team's, so ''analytics fans'' were angry.

He's not a first-pairing defenseman, that's a given. Ideally, on a contending team, he could be a 15-minute-per-game guy, and  17-minuter, bottom-pairing guy on an average team. You need those types of players to make up a team. But Flyers fans needed a scapegoat, and found him and Andrew MacDonald.

So this summer, GM Ron Hextall ''made a miracle happen'' according to some by trading Grossmann and Chris Pronger's contract to the Phoenix Coyotes for Sam Gagner.

Here's a card of Grossmann's before the spelling of his last name was corrected in North America (it ends with two Ns):
It shows him wearing the Flyers' current/retro white (away) uniform and is from Upper Deck's 2012-13 Artifacts set (card #A-NG of the Autofacts sub-set); it's part of two cards of the same set I found in an old box that I had totally forgotten I had.

Unlike many who criticize him, Grossmann has two World Championship medals, bronze (2009) and silver (2011), acquired while playing with Team Sweden.

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