Monday, June 25, 2012

A Spectacular Weekend at the NHL Draft

I love taking our show on the road and I hate taking our show on the road. I love being around people, especially sports fans and collectors that really have a passion or interest in the hobby. I don't like driving or flying and being away from my family. So I loaded up our equipment and drove to Pittsburgh, PA for the 2012 Draft. The NHL knows how to do an event. The draft has gotten better every single year. It's become one of my favorites.

The interaction with the players just minutes after the biggest moment in their lives takes place, makes the trip worthwhile. Being able to broadcast from the trading card and memorabilia show is just icing on the cake. Both Panini America and Upper Deck did a great job with collectors, producing nice looking, exclusive sets, and making them easy to acquire. Panini even made them available to collectors online. For us, handing out cards to kids, well that's priceless. We brought a lot of trading cards and gave them out to attendees. It's funny because it is people's nature to question the gesture when someone gives them something for free. It is sad to me that the notion that a string is attached has become the nature of people's thought process. Not with us. We like giving cards away. Always have.

The one thing about doing a show like the draft is that you never know what to expect. Sometimes we get a jump on things and can take time to schedule guests and prepare segments, sometimes it is an unpredictable mess. We got lucky this time around. We actually had time to prepare two shows worth of content and blew through most of it on the first day. The second day, we fit four guests on a 90-minute show. It was fast and furious. We closed out the event with a rookie, an icon and a hall of famer and it was a blast.

On day 2 the picks are roaming the arena and are more accessible. We snagged Nashville Predators 3rd rounder Jimmy Vesey and Russ mistook him for another of the Preds picks, Colton Sissons. If I was Jimmy, I would've told Russ to suck it, but Jimmy was a class act and sat down with us for a few minutes.  He was followed by one of the true icons of the NHL, the Keeper of the Cup Phil Pritchard.

Last but not least, and thanks to Hersh from Frozen Pond, we were able to have a few minutes with one of the NHL's all-time greats, 7-time Stanley Cup winning player and coach Bryan Trottier.

To say I had a spectacular weekend would be an understatement. Our goal was to bring the excitement of the draft, along with some of the collectibles you can find only at that event, home to the collectors. I hope we accomplished the mission.

Here's a link to the Saturday show if you'd like to listen:

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