Friday, June 9, 2017

Steve Bernier: Two Autographed Cards

When a couple of friends and I last spoke with Steve Bernier in late May, he was telling us that during this past season with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, he realized he hadn't felt as good about his scoring ability since his days in Juniors, and we're talking about a guy who's had 31-, 49-, 36- and 35-goal seasons in the LHJMQ, only once appearing in over 68 games (71, in 2002-03, the year he potted 49 with the Moncton Wildcats).

Of course, his comeback season came to an end in late January, after 33 games, in which he had scored 16 goals with 10 assists for 26 points, with 26 penalty minutes and a +13 rating. A labrum tear was the final diagnosis. Still, that didn't stop the New York Islanders from re-signing him to a two-year, two-way contract earlier today.

In the NHL, the former first-round pick of the San Jose Sharks (16th overall in 2003) has reached the 30-point mark three times in two separate decades, the most recent occurrence being with the 2014-15 New Jersey Devils.

He brings a wealth of experience, having been a star growing up (MVP of Canada's Midget AAA tournament, then known as the Air Canada Cup, now the Telus Cup), then in Juniors, and having been a part of the gold medal Team Canada rosters at the 2002 Ivan Hlkina U-18 Tournament and the 2003 U-18 World Juniors, in which he finished second in team scoring with 8 points in 7 games. He also played in the 2011-12 Stanley Cup Final, although some Devils fans might still have outbursts of violence when they're reminded of his 5-minute major during which the Los Angeles Kings scored three goals in the deciding game. Let's be honest, though: the Devils never stood a chance, and were extremely lucky to make it there in the first place.

He signed two cards for me (in blue sharpie) earlier this Spring, both from his days with the Sharks. First, the former home and weirdly-delimited white uniform, on card #67 from Upper Deck's 2007-08 Black Diamond set:
And here he is in black, on card #165 from Upper Deck's 2006-07 Fleer collection:
He tagged both signatures with "16" - the jersey number he currently wears with the Isles, not the one he wore in San Jose (26).

No comments:

Post a Comment