Monday, November 20, 2017

Fredrik Olausson Autographed Card

When I think of the best defensemen of the first iteration of the Winnipeg Jets, three names come to mind: Phil Housley, Teppo Numminen, and Fredrik Olausson. Obviously, Housley has since been named to the Hall Of Fame, but the latter two were also important in making the Jets one of the three best teams in the Clarence Campbell Conference.

Unfortunately for them, the best two - the Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames - also played in the same division, so the Jets were, essentially, doomed to never have playoff success, and their defensemen were doomed to finish in the minuses, despite having boasted some of the best offensive talent of all time in the likes of Dale Hawerchuk and Teemu Selanne.

Although I associate Olausson and Numminen mostly with Winnipeg, the former did play for many more teams, having also suited up for the Oilers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Anaheim Mighty Ducks (three stints for parts of five seasons in total) and one year with the Detroit Red Wings, with whom he won the Stanley Cup in 2001-02.

He also played in the Swedish League, winning championships with Karlstad Farjestads BK (1985-86) and Jonkoping HV71 (2003-04). He returned to his original team, Farjestads BK, in 2006-07, but was forced to retire due to a failing liver, which required two operations and a transplant.

He returned to HV71 for the 2009-10 season as an assistant coach.

Internationally, he won a silver medal with Team Sweden at the 1986 World Championships and was part of the team that finished fifth at the 2002 Olympics.

Here he is wearing the Jets' 1990s blue (away) uniform, on card #264 from Pro Set's 1991-92 Series 1 collection:
He signed it in blue sharpie, which should place this signature as being from the 2002-03 season.

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