Ticket Monster LAD Banner

Saturday, February 26, 2011

When Game Used Isn't Even Close To Game Used

I purchased a Ryan Getzlaf 2005-2006 Fleer Ultra Rookie Uniformity GU Jersey swatch off of eBay in early February. The appealing attributes of the card were twofold: it was cheap, and it was from Getzlaf's rookie season, back when the Ducks were still the Mighty Ducks, and Emilio Estevez jokes were more relevant.

A bid of $0.99 won me the card, with $3 for shipping and handling. And that three bucks is even more reasonable in this case, considering the seller is from Canada. Long ways away, eh?

Flash forward to the middle of February, and the card arrives after Snowpocalypse did its due diligence and slowed down mail service across the country. I pry the card out of the bubble mailer, and I find two things. First, it had almost slipped out of its penny sleeve and old-style toploader. But that wasn't the most interesting discovery I made -  though it was the most frightening, with horror averted as I got to the card in time and  placed it in a new penny sleeve and a much better and sturdier toploader.

The most interesting discovery, as the title of this post alludes to, is that the card is in fact not a piece of game used jersey from my favorite hockey player. As the back of the card clearly states, the jersey swatch came from a jersey Captain Getz wore in a photo shoot during his rookie campaign. So yeah.....a bit let down, I am.

While I perhaps should be angry, I'm not. The jersey was in fact worn by my favorite player, which is of course awesome in and of itself. And Fleer was quite the upstanding card company in this case. Instead of trying to pass the card off as coming from a jersey worn in an actual game, they kept no secrets from collectors and stated that the jersey never saw the ice.

Has anyone else found themselves in a similar situation, severely doubting whether or not the game used/game worn stamping on your card actually holds weight? Particularly a case where the card company is nice enough to actually tell you on the card that the swatch or bat piece or whatever it may be is not from an actual game?

While a game worn jersey swatch is indeed much more to my liking and infinitely cooler, I can still say I own a piece of a jersey worn by Ryan Getzlaf in his rookie season.


  1. At least they were up front about the specifics, instead of going the "event-worn" route.

  2. True enough. I always pretend event-worn is game used though, makes it easier haha.

  3. I've been thinking the same thing about Topps' jersey cards. Who knows what they were from. Since Topps doesn't like to specify anything about anything ever (it's a lawyer thing I'm sure), it leaves us, the collectors, wondering where the heck our relics came from. Maybe Topps has a room full of jerseys and they have the players come in and wear them once and consider them 'game used'. I've gotten some Donruss relics from around 01-02 or so and on the back they at least have a picture of the jersey/bat/base/whatever the piece on the front came from.

  4. It is pretty troubling.

    If autos weren't (usually) so expensive, I'd probably just stick to them and say goodbye to relics.

  5. I chiefly player collect Seneca Wallace, and every single jersey card of his is from his rookie year of 2003. Problem is he hadn't played football professionally yet, so every Seahawks colored relic is event worn from the rookie premiere. I have pieces of jersey, footballs, shoes, face masks...a little bit of everything. All event worn. Laaaame but must have haha.

    What's nice though is that a few companies (most notably PressPass) made jersey cards using his college game worn unis. So I do have a few game worn pieces of Seneca's, but the event stuff vastly outnumbers it.

  6. I know what you mean Tim; it's pretty disappointing, but it's a card of your guy, so you've gotta have it regardless.

  7. Wow, I've never seen that before. Kind of made me laugh, but at least they were honest...Photo Shoot worn...ha

  8. It's a first for me as well Julie. Funny enough, I actually grabbed a card from my local shop's eBay store, and when I picked it up today and read the back, lo and behold I found another photo shoot worn-card.

    If it wasn't so depressing, it could be a new PC for me haha.

  9. This comes directly from one of my Bowman Relics:

    "Topps Pledges to Bring You Closer to the Game and its Leading Players. The Material Featured on the Front of this Card was worn during an Official NBA Game or Event. The Material Was Acquired Directly From NBA Properties, Inc."

    I know... what's the problem? Well... I'm not a fan of Topps' choice of words. They fail to say who exactly wore the jersey during the game or event.

    This card in particular is of Tracy McGrady. What if Topps is using a swatch of jersey from Sasha Vujacic... or worse some bench player who never even worked up a sweat.

    Technically... Topps can do this, because it was worn during an official NBA game.

    The solution is simple... Topps... just add the player's name in your guarantee.

    "The Material Featured on the Front of this Card was worn by Tracy McGrady during an Official NBA Game or Event."

    Want to make it even better? Get rid of the word "event". How about adding a photo of the actual jersey, like Fleer used to do on their cards? Maybe adding the actual date the jersey was worn... I know... I know... a collector can dream, can't he?

    But Topps wouldn't scam collectors... right? My latest post talks about one of their "hobby issues" from the mid 90's.

    Sorry for the mini rant Greg... love your blog... and I love GU cards... just wish card companies would be more specific on their memorabilia cards.

  10. No worries Fuji, rant away haha.

    "Event" always irks me, especially when they say "this is not from any specific event or game".

    Their monopoly seems to have made Topps apathetic to actually trying. It's not like collectors give them millions of dollars or anything.