Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Lyle Odelein Autograph Card

Lyle Odelein was the Columbus Blue Jackets' very first captain, serving in that capacity for their first two seasons, before they traded him to the Chicago Blackhawks for Jaroslav Spacek. He'd previously acted as alternate captain for both the Montréal Canadiens and New Jesey Devils, and both in successful Stanley Cup runs (the Habs in 1993, the Devils in 2000).

He was a tough customer, but not an actual enforcer; he didn't back down from a fight but rarely instigated it. Instead, he rarely made defensive-zone mistakes for most of his career (save the early years as he was learning the ropes) but only once did he really make a notable and amazing offensive contribution, an end-to-end rush in which he deked everybody and scored on Ed Belfour. There was also the time where he had 5 assists in a single game, tying a Habs record he now shares with Sheldon Souray and Doug Harvey (for my money, the best defenseman in NHL history).

So, yeah, he may not have been a superstar, but he was kind of a big deal.

So here he is wearing the Jackets' original blue uniform, without the "C", so during a pre-season game, from In The Game's 2000-01 Be A Player Signature Series set (it's the signed insert version of card #88, the silver variant), which he signed on-card in thin black sharpie:
I very much prefer their current uniforms; these original ones are too simple, with too much of one colour and not enough design or thought having gone into it.