Historical Hockey Memorabilia Auction Winter 2017
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 3/8/2017
The only athlete to see game action in six different decades, Gordie Howe is a shining example of the old saying, “They don’t make ‘em like they used to”. A product of the Great Depression, Howe first saw competitive hockey action while accepting an invitation to the New York Rangers training camp held annually in Winnipeg, and despite competing at a competent enough level to be offered a “C” form for his rights, the 15 year old returned to Saskatchewan, with eyes on the tall prospect next from the Detroit Red Wings the following season. Howe would begin his professional career in the USHL with Omaha, spending a single season in Nebraska before embarking on an amazing 25-consecutive season love affair with the Red Wings. Six more seasons of high-level hockey would follow, with time spent in the WHA with New England and Houston before a final swan song season with the Hartford Whalers during their inaugural NHL season in 1979-80. Mr Hockey would complete his legendary career with 1850 points in 1767 NHL games played, along with an additional 508 points in the WHA over 419 games.
We are pleased to bring to the collecting community an exceptional and highly desirable New England Whalers jersey worn by Howe during his final WHA season in 1978-79 where he scored his 500th WHA point, and it’s been photo-matched! Labeling from Brockton producer Stall & Dean remains affixed to the collar, along with additional size (52), year (8) and laundering tags. Featuring a dual-layer tackle twill team crest with embroidered accents, the mesh V-neck has been embellished with dual-colour sleeve and verso numbers, along with matching alternate logos over each shoulder. The jersey also sports the full “Gordie Howe” across the nameplate, as both Mark and Marty were with the club this season as well. Exceptional use is exhibited on the HOF garment, with marks present along the lower front and over each sleeve, with additional examples over the team crest. Two team repairs are also present, over the lower reverse and near the right cuff. Regarding the previously mentioned photo-matches, an included numeric image has been matched to the visible dark semi-circular black mark on the team crest, and to the black mark at the right of the #9 on the right sleeve. A second included numeric image from Nov 1978 shows the marks matched previously, along with the black marks within the lower front white striping band.
Any game-worn items associated with the monumental career of Gordie Howe are museum worthy, with the offered sweater no exception. Aside from a few scant others including possibly Wayne Gretzky, we can’t think of any individual more important to the history of our beloved game than Mr. Hockey himself, the immortal Gordie Howe.
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