Friday, March 22, 2019

Thomas Hickey Autograph Card

Thomas Hickey is a former first-round pick (fourth overall, 2007) who delivers more than a hit per game, and many are huge ones, such as this one on Brendan Gallagher:

Props to the Montréal Canadiens' should-be captain for bouncing right back up from the hit, but it was clean and did not deserve Gallagher's extra attention, especially since #11's teammate Andrew Shaw had laid a borderline dirty hit on New York Islanders defenseman Scott Mayfield in the previous shift.

Hickey's 30 years old now and has cemented his place as a second-pairing defender on a strong Isles blue line, playing 19 minutes per night in this injury-filled season, but he's also played upwards of 21 per game in the postseason before.

I really like what Barry Trotz, Lane Lambert and Mitch Korn have brought to the Islanders, uniting the team after star center John Tavares' departure to the Toronto Maple Leafs and instilling a team-first/underdog mentality that may just lead them to the top of their division, a feat the Leafs were never truly in a position to achieve at any point this year. Or any year, as they've only done so once in my lifetime (1999-2000). Which happens to be the only time they'd done so since the early 1960s. They haven't won a Stanley Cup since 1967 either. But hey, free agents are free to sign wherever they please - and everyone makes mistakes.

Hickey, for his part, is currently in the first of a four-year contract that pays him $2.5M annually and is semi-lockout-protected for 2020-21, as he's slated to get half his salary as a signing bonus on July 1st the summer before. That's a mighty good deal no matter how you slice it, as it takes him to what may be the end of his prime, at 34 years old.

Here he is as captain of Team Canada from the World Juniors, at which he won gold medals in both 2008 and 2009 on card #TCS-TH from Upper Deck's 2015-16 O-Pee-Chee set and Team Canada Signatures sub-set:
Even though he's clearly wearing a #4 white (home) jersey, the on-sticker autograph sees him having tagged "14" at the end - his number with the Isles until this year, until Dennis Seidenberg was let go, freeing #4. Fun fact: Seidenberg's now back with the team after skating and practicing with them all year on a PTO.

No comments:

Post a Comment