Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Craig Berube Autographed Card

I wasn't Craig Berube's biggest fan growing up, because he played on teams I didn't like back then (Philadelphia Flyers, Toronto Maple Leafs, Washington Capitals), but there's something to be said about a player with 61 goals and 159 points in 1051 NHL games that makes you respect his body of work.

Then again, it could be the 3360 career penalty minutes (3149 in the regular season, plus 2511 in 89 playoff games) on a 6'1" frame for 205 pounds of angry beef.

Nowadays, I look at his playing resume and see an undrafted player who spent 17 seasons in the NHL on five different teams, including two stints each with the Flyers, Calgary Flames and Caps. I see determination and certainly respect and dedication to his teams and teammates.

He stands 7th on the all-time penalty minutes list and is short-listed for two other impressive feats, including being only the second interim head coach (after Larry Robinson) to win a Stanley Cup. He also made history with Ted Nolan on November 21, 2013 when they became the first pair of coaches to face off to be of First Nations descent, Berube being part Cree and Nolan being of Ojibwe descent.

Here he is wearing the Leafs' best-looking uniform, the 1980s white (home) uniform, on card #495 from Pro Set's 1991-92 Series 2 set, which also lists him as a member of the Flames:
 He signed it in blue sharpie in the early 00s, when he was coaching the AHL's Philadelphia Phantoms.

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