Affectionately known as “Mr. Hockey,” Gordie Howe, the late iron man of the NHL, is considered by many to be the greatest player in the history of his sport. Playing for a remarkable 32 years, Howe was an indomitable force with a relentless competitive fire. His stats (World Hockey Association included), counting the playoffs: In 2,421 games, 1,071 goals, 1,518 assists, 2,589 points and 2,418 penalty minutes. He held NHL records of 801 goals (regular season only) and 1,850 points until Wayne Gretzky came long. And besides the endurance, there was the ability and determination that enabled Howe to win six MVPs and six scoring championships with the Detroit Red Wings. He finally retired as a player in 1980 at age 52. Sadly, earlier this summer he passed away at the age of 88. Through August 20th, one of his game worn Red Wings jerseys is on the auction block at SCP Auctions as part of its 2016 Mid-Summer Classic.
SCP Auctions is pleased to present what must be considered one of, if not THE finest Gordie Howe game jerseys ever offered at auction. This conclusively photo-matched Durene Red Wings number 9 knit was worn by Howe during the year he hung up the skates (for the first time!). This all-original white dureen jersey is one of only two Gordie Howe game-worn jerseys that have been conclusively photo-matched by the MeiGray Authenticated system. Howe, who entered the NHL in 1946-47, primarily wore wool jerseys. The Red Wings did not switch to dureen jerseys until 1962-63, which makes this photo-matched dureen white jersey comparatively rarer than a photo-matched wool among the extremely limited population of photo-matched Howes in the hobby. Howe autographed the front of the jersey in red marker and added his iconic “#9” underneath his signature. The current high bid on the jersey is $64,843 with just eight days remaining in the auction.
“In the field of game worn hockey jerseys this is a pinnacle artifact, worthy of museum exhibition,” said Dan Imler, vice president at SCP Auctions.
Online bidding is open to registered bidders and concludes Saturday, August 22. The auction is being conducted online at www.scpauctions.com. For more information, call 949-831-3700. -Terry Melia
Another rare Ernie Banks uniform up for auction, another hefty sale price. For the third time in a year, a jersey worn more than 40 years ago by the late Chicago Cubs legend fetched a six-figure sum at SCP Auctions. The latest—a gray road jersey worn during the 1969 season—sold for $161,484 after more than two weeks on the block at the Laguna Niguel, Calif.-based auction house. It was sold by a Barrington Hills resident who got it from Banks before the Cubs great moved to California.
SCP Auctions is pleased to present a highly coveted game-worn Edmonton Oilers road jersey that was donned by none other than “The Great One” himself, Wayne Gretzky. The road blue knit gamer by Sandow SK dates from Gretzky’s second season (1980-81) in which he scored 55 goals and recorded 109 assists for the Edmonton Oilers and is regarded as the finest Gretzky game jersey in the hobby. Bidding, which began on Wed., Nov. 18, and concludes this Sat., Dec. 5 at SCP Auctions, is currently sitting at $32,211. It previously sold at auction in 2013 for $110,293.
“This is not only one of the earliest Gretzky gamers known, it is among the most thoroughly authenticated examples as well,” said Dan Imler, SCP Auctions vice president. “The provenance and physical attributes of this extraordinary jersey have been verified by a committee of the most revered experts in the field of hockey memorabilia. It easily ranks among the finest Gretzky game worn jersey ever offered at auction.”
When he was just 12 and playing in the prestigious International Pee Wee Hockey Tournament in Quebec City’s Le Colisee, Wayne Gretzky was already so famous that he was besieged routinely by autograph seekers in every rink he played in. At age 15, he tried to get his team, the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, to assign him jersey number 9 in honor of his favorite player, Gordie Howe. But 9 belonged to a veteran player, so Gretzky was given number 19 and, a few weeks later, number 99.
In 1978, at age 17, Gretzky turned pro with the WHA’s Indianapolis Racers who quickly traded him to the Edmonton Oilers, where he was allowed to keep uniform number 99. In 1979, Gretzky made his NHL debut. Over the next two decades, he lifted the sport of hockey to new and dizzying heights while establishing himself as the game’s all-time greatest player. He had an unprecedented 15 seasons with more than 100 points, and four with more than 200.
The first half of the 1980-81 season saw the Edmonton Oilers wear these solid knit Sandow SK made jerseys. The team then switched sets to a heavy mesh gamer, also made by Sandow SK, for the 2nd half of the 1980-81 season. The jersey has the Oilers crest sewn on front, “99” sewn on the back and sleeves and the “Alberta 75th Anniversary” patch sewn on shoulder. The Sandow Knit tag appears in the neck noting size “XL.” The jersey shows light but definite game use with several pucks and stick marks and very good inside pilling. This jersey traces back to a veteran collector in Edmonton, Alberta who had been collecting game worn hockey jerseys since the 1970’s. He personally obtained it directly from the Edmonton Oilers in 1981 as part of a team set of game-worn jerseys. -Terry Melia