Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Mark DeSantis Autograph Card

Mark DeSantis was a career minor-leaguer who was never drafted and spent the bulk of his playing time in the South, in such leagues as the original IHL (San Diego Gulls, San Antonio Dragons, Grand Rapids Griffins), ECHL (Greensboro Monarchs, Jacksonville Lizard Kings, Louisiana IceGators, Augusta Lynx (get it?), Toledo Storm), AHL (Baltimore Bandits, Providence Bruins), the short-lived (1996-2001) WPHL (New Mexico Scorpions), CHL (San Antonio Iguanas, Amarillo Gorillas, Rapid City Rush), the recent-times (2007-10) IHL (Port Huron IceHawks) and the British Elite League (Basingstoke Bison).

With the Gorillas (2002-04), he was a player-coach, which prepared him for his later career behind the bench, first as an assistant with the Rush (2009-10), then head coach with the SPHL's Fayetteville FireAntz and CHL's Brampton Beast (2013-14), before returning with the Rush in their ECHL iteration, first as associate coach (2014-16), and as head coach this past season (2016-17).

He also played roller-hockey with the Anaheim Bullfrogs in the defunct 1996 league.

He must love to travel.

Here he is in the signed insert version of card #150 from Classic's 1993-94 4-Sport set, numbered 2562/3000:
On it, he's wearing the San Diego Gulls' "classic" white (home) uniform.

The Gulls, of course, were revived in last year's AHL realignment as the Anaheim Ducks' main affiliate. I'll probably dive deeper into the city's hockey-related history later this summer.

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