Dr. Brian Price, president of In The Game, has used his online blog to tell his story from the last two decades in hockey collecting. It’s a good story, so we’ve clipped part of the story below (with a link to the full story).
IN THE GAME TURNS OVER A NEW LEAF – ACCORDING TO DR. PRICE
As most veteran collectors know, I have been in this hobby for twenty-two years… I started out as a licensor of the Parkhurst name first to Pro Set in 1990 and after they went bankrupt to Upper Deck in 1993. I found the Parkhurst name dormant and brought it back to hockey cards, something I am very proud of.
By 1995 I was out of the business and back to collecting both cards and game-used jerseys. By now visitors to both the Spring and Fall Expos have seen some of my game-worn collection, that too I am very proud of.
In 1999, I was asked by Ted Saskin of the NHLPA to manufacture their Be A Player brand. In The Game, Inc. was born.
In 2003-04 during the lock-out, the NHLPA gave Upper Deck an exclusive licensing agreement for five years without even giving In The Game a chance to match or beat their offer. We were just told to close shop, but not so fast.
Well I was either too stubborn or too stupid to do that and I continued to make hockey cards utilizing our hockey knowledge, vintage memorabilia, great player relationships, my loyal staff and our passion for the game of hockey and the hockey trading card hobby.
Did the NHL or the NHLPA approve of this, absolutely not!
They have threatened, they have contacted agents and players about our products, they have done lots of things over the past 10 year period to put us out of business.
The road I have followed has not been an easy one.
After the lock-out ended and during the Upper Deck exclusive era, collectors wanted another choice for collecting and In The Game provided that. We had five great years. Thank you all for that.
Then along came Panini. It is not important what I think about Panini and their products but they did give collectors another choice for those who would not buy Upper Deck and the last three years have been difficult ones for In The Game.
We have come out with some great products during this period of time that have been embraced by collectors; Forever Rivals, Ultimate Memorabilia 11 and 12, Superlative Hockey III and The First Six, Motown Madness, Decades The 80s and 90s, Lord Stanley’s Mug and StickWorks to name a few.
To read the full story on the In The Game website, please visit here.