Collector’s Billboard: Andrew Binner
Andrew Binner was a regular, hockey-crazed, 7-year-old boy when he witnessed the unforgettable kindness of one of Winnipeg’s favourite Jets’ players.
After waiting patiently in line for 2 hours to get Teemu Selanne’s autograph at the Jets’ Wive’s Carnival, Andrew and his mom were devastated when the hockey superhero’s time was up.
With only two people in front of them, they had been inches from making the cut-off!
Selanne must have noticed the young boy’s disappointment.
Penny, Binner’s mom, explained how Selanne walked across the stage and proceeded to scrawl his autograph on the card the impressionable kid had been clutching for the last two hours.
Vintage = Retirement
Today, Binner buys and sells “older” hockey cards. With a passion for hockey cards from the 1970s, Binner calls himself a “vintage hockey card collector”.
He estimates that he has one million cards in his possession at any given time. This number rises with each collection he acquires and falls with each sale he makes and ships out. He sells locally as well as globally.
One project he started recently is acquiring affordable rookies and Hall of Fame players from 1950-1987. He currently has over 3,000 cards in this particular collection, safely tucked in plastic cases called top loaders and boxed up. One day, when he retires, they’ll come out of the closet again.
Esso NHL Sticker Books started it all
Penny points out that Binner’s passion for collecting hockey cards started back in the late 1980s when Esso gas stations handed out NHL sticker books and sticker packs.
Binner was 3 years old at the time his first NHL sticker book was completed. Penny smiles as she reminisces hearing her young son name all the hockey legends without hesitation.
Scheifele: a rising talent
Today, Binner’s favourite player is the Winnipeg Jets Centre, Mark Scheifele.
When I asked Andrew why Scheifele, he talked about Scheifele’s passion for the game. This up-and-coming superstar trains hard off the ice as well as playing with full steam every time he gets on the ice.
Scheifele is well-respected among Jets fans for his strong work ethic and positive attitude. And each year, he continues to get better.
Winnipeg Jets FFL (fan for life)
Binner has a solid Jets card collection. He has a variety of nearly every low end Winnipeg Jets card you could want as well as a large selection of patches and low numbered cards.
If you happen to be looking for an Adam Lowry card, Andrew is the guy you want to know.
He has over 150 different cards of Lowry, including a Cup black 1/1 autograph and other rare cards that cost him an arm and a leg. Or more specifically, a signed Ted Lindsay jersey and $550.
Other rookie cards Andrew has had and regretfully parted with include:
- Gretzky (bvg 8),
- Howe (bvg 1),
- Hull (psa 6),
- Orr (ksa 7.5),
3 tips for new collectors/kids
As a lifelong collector, Andrew has this advice for young kids who might not be able to afford the more expensive packs of NHL cards today.
1. Stick with regular Upper Deck hobby packs or splurge on 2014-2017 SP Authentic. Binner says these products tend to hold their value over time and you’ll have the opportunity to stumble upon some valuable cards.
2. Right now is a good time to buy cards from these Winnipeg players:
- Andrew Copp,
- Matthew Perrault, and
- Jacob Trouba.
For $30, you could stop by a card store and take home some nice patches and autographs of these 3 guys.
3. Practice being a scout.
Take a look at who’s playing on the Moose and pick a promising player who you think will play for the Jets in the future. Start collecting that player’s cards now and keep track of his journey!
Practice safe card collecting
Whichever route you choose, think of your sports cards as investments.
Protect them by always having toploaders and penny sleeves on-hand when you open packs. You never know when you might hit a big rookie!
Any scratch or ding on the card could drop the value of the card by hundreds of dollars.
If you or someone you know is looking to sell an older collection of hockey cards – or looking for a card to complete your “vintage” set, go find Andrew on Ebay.
Or bring the whole family down to the upcoming sports card show at Bronx Park Community Centre where Andrew will be with cards to sell. Come see his Winnipeg Jets and Adam Lowry cards!
The show’s on Saturday, March 24, 2018, from 9 – 2.
Admission is $3, free for kids under 12, and the event is promising to be a good one with nearly all the tables booked by vendors.