2014 was hyped as the year of "Johnny Football." Things haven't worked out in that regard. Instead, it's "Johnny Hockey" who is earning the name, both in the world of sports and in the hobby. Interest in Johnny Gaudreau rookie cards havs risen thanks to the left winger's electric play and promising talent.
Making his NHL debut in the final game of the 2013-14 season may have been more of a symbolic gesture for the Flames than anything else. However, it did make the center eligible for cards at the onset of the 2014-15 hockey card season. Collectors can expect Johnny Gaudreau rookie cards in virtually all of Upper Deck's sets from his first full season. The options are broad, ranging from affordable entry-level products through to high-end rarities with autographs and memorabilia.
Gaudreau's amateur career includes a gold medal with Team USA at the 2013 World Junior Championships. He also won the Hobey Baker Award as hockey's top college player in 2014. He's already proven to be a steal for the Flames, who took him in the fourth round of the 2011 draft.
Johnny Gaudreau Rookie Cards Guide
The following is a list of Johnny Gaudreau rookie cards found in major base sets. It does not include inserts. We'll update it throughout the season as new cards are released.
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If you're a fan of ultra high-end cards but might not have the budget for sets like The Cup, the 2014-15 Fleer Showcase Johnny Gaudreau might be the next best thing. It has both an autograph and patch swatch. Numbered to 175, it's still rare but not impossible to find.
It's rare for rookies in hockey card sets not to be short prints of some kind. But that's not the case with the Johnny Gaudreau rookie card in 2014-15 Fleer Ultra where first-year players are mixed in with the veterans. As a result, this is one of his most affordable rookies.
Part of the Marquee Rookie subset, this is a short print. However, as part of the base O-Pee-Chee set, it's not overly expensive or tough to find. This is a product that focuses more on building a set and nostalgia than the high-end chase.
While the chromium look stands out versus most of his other early cards, the 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee Platinum Johnny Gaudreau is one of his more affordable rookie cards. Included in a mid-range product, it's also not a short print. If you're looking for something to chase, there are several Refractor-like parallels. Gaudreau is also part of the Rookie Autographs checklist, which come with on-card signatures.
Save for a couple of numbers on the front, the 2014-15 SP Game Used Johnny Gaudreau is a rather plain card. But because it's limited to just 53 serial-numbered copies, it carries a lofty price tag because of its rarity.
The 2014-15 SPx Johnny Gaudreau is his first autographed jersey card found in a base set. Numbered to 249, it should be on the tougher side to find down the road once the initial supply has dried up. The red foil backdrop gives way to a couple of Precious Metal Gems-inspired parallels, Blue (#/50) and Green (#/10).
Young Guns have become something of a hockey card right of passage. They're almost like another class of rookie card unto themselves. As short prints, they've got relative rarity on their side. But when you factor in the massive amount of set builders the release has each year, it takes things to another level. This isn't the most expensive Johnny Gaudreau rookie card, but its price tag might surprise you given its lack of serial number or other premium embellishments.
2014-15 Upper Deck Artifacts has the first serial numbered Johnny Gaudreau rookie card. That said, with 999 copies, it's not the rarest. Besides the base version, the card has several memorabilia and autographed parallels.
Don't let the lack of numbering fool you. This isn't the easiest card to find. That's because it's part of the Rookie Gems Quad Diamond portion of the set that are relatively tough to pull. For collectors who like colorful parallels, Black Diamond has some of the brightest.
Printed on acetate, there's instantly something different about this Johnny Gaudreau rookie card. Numbered to 99, it's also one of the rarest and most valuable.
Like all rookies in Trilogy, Gaudreau has three cards in the base set. The most common comes numbered to 799. By traditional definitions, this is the rookie card. His autographs in the main set will also be considered by a lot of collectors to be rookies as well. His Level 2 card is signed and numbered to 399. The rarest, Level 3, has just 49 copies and comes with a "Go Flames" inscription along with his signature. Both of the autograph cards use stickers.