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The great Jim Henson died in 1990, but his Muppets continued to be a cultural force through the decade. They had three feature films in the 1990s: the excellent "Muppet Christmas Carol" (1992), the pretty okay "Muppet Treasure Island" (1996), and the misguided-but-at-least-it-had-Muppets "Muppets from Space" (1999). They had their second television show in "Muppets Tonight".
And they had this incredible set of Muppet-themed NHL collector pins, which just surfaced on eBay. I'd say this was their greatest accomplishment of all. My god, that Kermit/Chicago Blackhawks pin is incredible. I must have it.
This remarkable set is a cross-promotional product from 1993, the year that introduced us to the Florida Panthers and the Anaheim Ducks, as well as the Eastern and Western Conference alignment that would better accommodate them. This is why they and their California and Florida counterparts get such excellent placement in the plaque above.
That said, 1993 was also the year that the Minnesota North Stars became the Dallas Stars, and that is not reflected on the plaque. Gasp!
Click here to view a larger version, and you absolutely must, because there are some incredible details in the pins that you'll miss if you don't. Among those: Gonzo is riding the Buffalo Sabre and fishing the Hartford Whale, Miss Piggy is the Ottawa Senator and she's wearing the Toronto Maple Leaf very, very salaciously, and Animal is using the New York Islanders' stick as a rowing oar.
The rare and beautiful set, which is reportedly in excellent condition, was posted on eBay just this week. It could be yours (for upwards of $250). Or you could gift it to your favourite hockey blogger! I know one whose birthday is in a month.
s/t to Reddit Hockey.
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- Ice Hockey
- Muppet Treasure Island
- Muppet Christmas Carol
- Jim Henson
- Florida Panthers