Thursday, August 25, 2011

#4 - Value Vintage Sets - 84/85 Topps

I think from now to number one the list will be a little more interesting because I felt that #2-4 could all be rearranged and with the right argument I could certainly buy into a person's opinion on the matter. But really, like most people's blogs they are just opinion pieces anyway so here is why I think 84-85 Topps is the 4th best value vintage set out there.

Here are the redeeming qualities to me:
The set is from the mid-80's which was the height of fire-wagon hockey!
Tonnes of star players in the set as well as a crop of new up-coming stars
It was the first Topps set produced since 81-82 so there are a few "First Topps Cards"
It was harder to build by packs because of 66 single printed cards in the set
17 Rookie cards in a set of just 165 Cards
Steve Yzerman rookie!!!

Card Design:

I really like the design of this year. On the front you get an action shot and a head shot. Also you see the name, team and position the player was playing. Really just a nice classic design certainly has the mid-80's feel to it.

The back side
The back is equally nice featuring vital information, stats and a small write-up back the player. Here Wayne averaged more than a goal a game for the second time in his career and won the Stanley Cup.

Key Card:

Without a doubt the key card in the set is the Steve Yzerman rookie. This card wasn't double printed so it holds its value rather well. The book price on this one is 15 - 40 dollars which is a pretty decent price to own an Yzerman rookie!

Steve front side
Steve back side
Like the Sakic rookie on my #5 set, Stevie Y's card value makes up a large percentage of the set price, in this case, 80% to be exact.

The rookies:
Even though there are only 17 rookies in the set, some of them are pretty good ones. Rookies include Dave Andreychuk, Tom Barrasso, Pat Verbeek, and Pat Lafontaine.

Pat Lafontaine Rookie

Other notable cards:

In addition to the rookies, there are some other cool cards like a Oilers era Gretzky which you have already seen, and cards from stars like Bossy, Coffey, Bourque, Savard and other typical mid-80's stars.

Wayne Gretzky All Star front side

All-Star back side

As you can see this is a pretty cool set. What makes it an especially good value is that you can own a set that is over 25 years old for very little. This set lists for 25-50 dollars in the Beckett but I have seen them go on eBay for less than 25! Definitely worth the price of a typical blaster box!

I bought my set which is in amazing shape in the early 90's for 45 bucks. Certainly haven't made any money off that purchase but my enjoyment of flipping through this set every now and again is worth paying a little more for it a long time ago and certainly a set I am going to continue to enjoy going forward.

It is worth noting, if you have the money...the 84/85 OPC is phenomenal as well. Addition rookies of Chelios, Neely and Gilmour make it a more attractive set but at 5 times the price a collector has to ask themselves is it worth it? Or should you own the Topps set and buy the missing rookies as singles? Lucky for me, I was given the 84/85 OPC set as a gift in the mid 90's so I have both plus a few singles of Gilmour and Chelios (no extra Neelys though).


  1. I like this set
    Best place to buy is online you think?

  2. Online is a good source if you don't have many hobby shops or places where you could buy it in person. Prices can be pretty good if you are patient!

    The advantage of a card shop is getting to see the product, know the person you are supporting and you can save on shipping costs.

    Either way, there is no reason why you can't get a Near-mint set for under 40 bucks shipping included or from a good card shop for likely around that price as well.

  3. Value set indeed. A near mint one just sold on the bay for under $30. I should have bought it just on principle.

    Good call. This wasn't on my list. :)

    I love this set. Bought a million of the OPC (not literally.)