Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Box break: 2012-13 In the Game Between the Pipes

If you take away two things about me from my time spent writing on the blogs, you should know that:

1.  My preference is licensed over un-licensed products
2.  I have a hard time turning down a good deal.

When it comes to hockey cards, these two things can sometimes lead to internal conflict.   That's how it was when I spotted a great deal on a hobby box of 2012-13 In the Game Between the Pipes on the Dave & Adam's website.  For less than half the normal cost, I decided to give this product a try.

I was pleasantly surprised.

For me, the junior goalie cards are OK.  I don't know most of the players, but sometimes that's what is good about cards, you get a bit of an education.

One of the more famous junior teams in Ontario is the London Knights, and I found a history of the team here.  I haven't followed junior hockey in Canada on a regular basis since I was a teenager.   Maybe it's time to get back into it a little more.  Some of the logos and jerseys are fabulous.

Being a part time goaltender myself when I was younger, some of the cards that feature vintage masks are great.

History lessons are always good, so these cards that feature goaltenders from the original six days are a treat for me as well.

Even today's stars are part of the mix:

There's also no shortage of goodies in the box.   One of the more popular inserts over the years has been the Masked Men cards, and I was fortunate enough to pull 3 of them out of the box.

Naturally, the Felix Potvin becomes an instant favorite for me.  These cards scanned tremendously; they are really beautiful in hand.

As far as hits, I received 6 total.  The 3 autographs consisted of one junior player, and two goalies who had careers that lasted just under a decade apiece.

The names on the jersey cards I pulled were a lot more notable.

The dual jersey was of Ed Belfour and Brandon Whitney.  Whitney is a BlackHawks prospect, drafted in the 7th round in 2012.

The other two cards feature a goalie that earned his 300th victory this season, Henrik Lundqvist.

A great way to finish up the box. 

At $47, this box was a great rip.  The original price was over $100, which for me would be a bit too steep for an unlicensed product.  If ITG BTP was priced in the $70-80 range, I might be more tempted to pick up a box when it first comes out. 

I now know what everyone has been raving about over the years.  ITG does a great job for a company without a NHL license.  With Upper Deck owning an exclusive license by the NHL, it appears that ITG will be limited in what it can do for the foreseeable future.

thanks for reading, Robert


  1. I'm definitely bummed about the exclusive license for Upper Deck. I have the same two weaknesses you listed at the beginning of the post, which resulted in me buying a box of ITG Heroes & Prospects a few years back. I was underwhelmed and stuffed the cards away in a box. When I stumbled upon them cleaning up my card room five or so years later it was a total different experience, as many of the players I hadn't the faintest idea about had gone on to become NHL stars.

    1. I've always been leery of Heroes & Prospects sets, because they remind me of Bowman baseball, which I don't care for because of the extensive use of players that generally are never heard of again. Now that I've said that, there are quite a few CHL goalie cards in this set, so I may have to heed your lesson and keep an eye on some of these guys.