Monday, February 2, 2009

Why I Collect: John Tavares

So I've decided that I'm going to start doing a weekly blog on why I collect certain cards, sets, players. I'm also going to do follow-up blog, examining if it's really worth it.

I'm going to start with John Tavares, a young, soon-to-be, superstar. I'm beginning with Tavares because he is a player that I have decided, recently, to start collecting. I already have a couple of his cards, and through a few possible upcoming trades and purchases, I'll have a few more.

Tavares has been talked about since 05/06 and has numerous cards already availible, primarily through In The Game (ITG). His name has become even more popular since the World Juniors, with Tavares becoming the tournament MVP. And with his "The Goal" of the tournament, it's no wonder.

Pictured below are the set of cards called "Phenoms". It is a set of 6 cards.

So far Tavares is being hailed as the "next" great player of the game. With a number of the youth in today's game, Crosby, Ovechkin, Kane, Toews, etc. It's a bright time for hockey. Only time will tell if these players will be able to hold up to pressure and expectations thrust upon them.

We know that the young stars I have listed above have thus far beyond proven themselves. Kane and Toews, for example are having phenomenal sophomore years.

The question is will Tavares live up the expectations thrust on him now that he has been seen on the world stage? I believe that he can and will. With the 2009 NHL Draft approaching, Tavares is projected to go #1. The problem with that, is which team will he be drafted to. Will it be a team that is rebuilding and will center its franchise around the young budding player, or will he simply be ushered into the background, stifling his growth at the professional level, or what if he's placed on a weak team and has to carry them? Only time will tell, however, I personally believe that Tavares will be just fine in the NHL. He's a little bit older, he'll be 19 by the time he'll play which is because he just missed the draft age deadline by 5 days. Crosby was 18 when he first played. Moreover, Tavares is also a larger player (6-feet) and has proven himself on the world stage.

The great thing is Tavares isn't the only draftee to watch for in the upcoming years, but I will touch more on that in later weeks.

Tavares, until recently, played for the Oshawa Generals. He's played in the OHL since he was 15 and granted "exceptional player" status. Tavares has been recently traded to the London Knights. The move seems to be a promising move, which should help him prepare for the next level, the NHL.

The World, especially Canada, watches and waits for Tavares' debut. The draft will be interesting, but 2009/2010 season promises to be a season to watch for.

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