Joe Sakic, Tony Granato, Marty McSorley and Trevor Linden
This was the third year that PANINI produced NHL stickers. The size of these stickers were made taller and less wide. This year of PANINI stickers had sticker boxes that were a very peaceful blue color and not easily found. Every once in a while you see these being sold; but not often. Albums from this year were also scarce in unused form and finding more than one of these somewhere is rare. After opening many wax packages of these stickers, it was apparent that the Steve Yzerman (sticker #57), Mark Messier (sticker#74) and Brendan Shanahan (sticker #255) were harder to pull than the others. PANINI states that all stickers are made in the same proportion, however, it is hard to believe this after experiencing sticker ratios of 10-1 on these 2 stickers. Panini Canada out of St. Laurent, Quebec was the Canadian distributor. No US distributor was named.
The size of each full sticker is 4.9 cm X 7.5 cm (1.93 in X 2.95 in). There were 100 packages in each wax box which originally retailed for $0.30 USD/$0.35 CAD per pack. Each package contained 6 stickers. The minimum number of packages needed to make a full set (assuming absolutely no doubles) is 64. The original album ($0.59) cover featured Joe Nieuwendyk Joe and Bobby Smith. The 1989 Stanley Cup winners were the Calgary Flames with Al MacInnis the Conn Smythe Trophy winner as playoffs MVP.
Future star Joe Sakic was named Canadian Major Junior Player of the Year in the 1987-88 season and would debut this year after being selected 1st overall by the Quebec Nordiques. Doug Gilmour was traded after the 1987-88 season from the Blues to the Flames in exchange for Michael Dark for Mike Bullard, Craig Coxe and Tim Cokery, it is still unclear who got the better end of that deal. The Flames would go on to win their 1st ever Stanley Cup with Gilmour in the lineup. Guy Lafleur comes out of retirement to join the New York Rangers. Lanny McDonald notches his 500th and final career goal on March 21st 1989. Mostly unknown Bernie Nicholls scores an unfathomable 150 points this season. Brian Leetch set an NHL record for goals by a rookie defenceman with 23. Leetch also took home the Calder Trophy for rookie of the year. Mike Vernon led the league with 37 wins this season on his way to his first Stanley Cup championship. On April 11, 1989 Ron Hextall becomes the first goalie in NHL history to score a goal in the playoffs putting the puck into the Capitals empty net. Al MacInnis wins the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP leading his Flames with 31 points in the playoffs.
No Expansion notes for this season.
Gretzky was traded on August 9th 1988 along with Mike Krushelnyski and Marty McSorley for Jimmy Carson, Martin Gelinas, 3 first round draft picks (which the Oilers squandered) and a, never again seen in the NHL, transfer fee of $15 million dollars. On January 10th 1989, Wayne notched his 2011th career point(regular season and playoffs combined) to surpass Gordie Howe’s combined record of 2010 pts. Despite the fact that Mario outscored Wayne by 31 points, Gretzky took home his 9th and final career Hart Trophy in 10 years; as league MVP. This was the 6th and final time that Wayne would fire more than 300 shots in a season with a total of 303 to be exact. This series featured 3 Gretzky stickers. Wayne scored a season total of 54 goals, 114 assists for a total of 168 points. His points per game ratio for this 78 games played season was 2.15.
This album measures about 4.9 cm X 6.5 cm (1.93 in X 2.56 in) and comes to you in near mint condition and currently sits empty with no stickers.