Saturday, September 14, 2013

Hounding Report: Dallas Stars Training Camp, Day 2, September 13

Remember how I said yesterday sometiems you have outings that go so well you can skip the rest of the week, and that Thursday was like that?

Yeah, I didn't skip Friday. I did jet at about noon so my wife and I could drive to Oklahoma City for the Weezer concert in El Reno (which was awesome, by the way), but I had an even more successful day Friday than I did on Thursday when I netted 50 sigs.

I got to the Convention Center at about 8:30 or so, seeing several other collectors there, with Arron, his mom, and David showing up not long after. I missed out on several in the early hours, but did arrive in time to get my last two Shawn Horcoff cards done (one going to Gregg, the other to Lee).  A couple of prospects came out not long after and while I didn't have cards of them, I did at least have a package of blank index cards.  Goalie Josh Robinson signed one, as did defenseman Kevin Connauton and forward Alex Chiasson.

One of the guys in the group spotted Dan Ellis a ways down so we went for him.  Ellis signed the final five cards I had of him, one being for Lee.  Brendan Dillon also stopped by, signing the lone card I have of him, which goes to Gregg.

And then came a problem.

Coming out from one end, five rookies were walking together, including Colton Sceviour.  I have two cards of him for Gregg that I wanted to get signed, but as I was heading over for him, we spotted Jamie Benn  walking alone.  Having four cards of him, and the fact that he's a guy with year-in and year-out 30-goal potential made that choice easy.  Benn signed all four cards I have of him, all of which go to Gregg.  Hopefully I'll have a shot at Sceviour some other time this season.

Next came the two Russians, Sergei Gonchar and top draft pick Valeri Nichushkin.  Gonchar did his usual four cards (one for Lee), while I got Nichushkin on an index card.  Think I may need to snag a few pucks for him and others.

A few more young guys signed index cards for me as well-- Radek Faksa, Maxime Fortunus, Jamie Oleksiak, and Chris Mueller.  We also were able to track down the trio of Alex Goligoski, Scott Glennie, and Cody Eakin.  Goligoski added his signature to four cards (2 for Lee and 2 for Gregg), and I got Glennie on an index card.  Erik Cole was the last one in, signing the four cards I had remaining for him.

After doing a little scouting, we went in and watched some of the on-ice sessions.  Kari Lehtonen came over near us to do an interview with Ralph Strangis.  I had Ralph sign an index card and we talked a little about broadcasting, followed by Kari doing another 8 cards (1 for Gregg, 2 for Lee).  That's 20 cards and a photo from him alone in a week's time!

While we waited, a puck got flipped over the glass and I was able to get a team emplpyee to toss it over to me.  So that's two pucks on the weekend as well!

After Kari did his interview, Trevor Daley and Vern Fiddler chatted with a couple people, then came over and signed for us.  Fiddler was even in a Cleveland Indians hat.  He signed six ECHL cards that Arron gave me after buying a giant lot of them on Ebay.  Fiddler didn't seem too happy, even asking me what I do with them.  I told him I collect them and trade with a few friends-- I have some in Boston who get Bruins for me, one in Seattle who gets the Canucks, and I get the Stars for them.  Unfortunately the cards were too big to fit in my book so I had to hand them to him and 4 of the 6 got smudged a little as he signed and stacked.  Meanwhile, Daley did four (2 for Gregg, 1 for Lee).  Assistant coach James Patrick signed four for me as well as he made his way to the bench for the upcoming scrimmage.

I had asked Ralph if Daryl "Razor" Reaugh was around and he said he was indeed, likely somewhere up in the stands, and another fan pointed out where she had seen him.  I made my way over and found him there.  Razor and I had actually met a few weeks before at my job at Panini, so I re-introduced myself and we chatted a little about everything going on out on the ice.  I asked him if he minded signing a few cards and he said he would.  He signed three, saying "Wow, got the whole Razor collection there... Actually, there's one you don't have on there, I forgot about that one."  So I'll be tracking that one down-- 1991-92 Stadium Club, as well as a few minor league issues.

I went to sit and watch the action for a while with my wife when I got a call from Arron-- Stephane Robidas and Lane MacDermid were about to leave, so I ran over and we tracked them down outside.  Robidas signed my last 5 cards of him (1 for Gregg, 3 for Lee), while I got MacDermid on an index card.  It turned out Toby Peterson was with them too but I was a bit preoccupied with the first two.  All I had left for him were a couple custom cards I made a few years back anyway.

Also, a little anomaly I noticed: Robidas always signs his #3 on autographs, but on cards with him wearing #17, he never puts that number with it.

TOTALS: 65 autographs
12 to Gregg
11 to Lee
42 for me

This is officially the best single-day hockey session and single-team hockey session I've ever had.  It also breaks my previous two-day record total with a whopping 115 between Thursday and Friday (Previous record: 110). Of those, 37 go to Gregg, 19 to Lee, and 59 are mine.

And to think, I might still end up with more on Saturday...

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