The toughest thing about coming up with the five most collectible authentic hockey jerseys is limiting the number to five. The athletic skills of the men who wear or have worn these jerseys are what most hockey fans appreciate.
The hockey jersey is a part of the player’s uniform that unifies the fans with their team. As a spectator looking down at the scene, there is a theatrical nuance in an arena during a hockey game. The hockey teams glide across the ice through defenses one moment, and instantly at the loss of the puck, positions are changed. The fans behind the glass moan with each missed scoring opportunity, and stand as one with raised hands echoing the announcer's shout, “He scores!”
The most collectible authentic hockey jerseys exemplify the hockey player at the top of his game, and hockey fans acknowledge it by the jersey they choose to wear.
- Wayne Gretzky’s Edmonton Oilers hockey jersey 99. Sandwiched between the years 1978 and 1999 is the hockey career of Wayne Gretzky, a career that saw Gretzky play with four teams: the Indianapolis Racers in the World Hockey Association, Edmonton Oilers, Los Angeles Kings, St. Louis Blues and the New York Rangers. A quick review of Gretzky's records is to see the woven tapestry of hockey greatness: most goals in a single season at 91; most career assists 1,963; most career points 2,857; for 50 times scored three or more goals in a single game; was the first to win the Hart Memorial Trophy eight straight years; won Art Ross Memorial Trophy seven straight years; and his jersey number, 99, was retired by every NHL hockey team.
- Mario Lemieux Pittsburgh Penguins hockey jersey 66. The name “Super Mario” was a fitting appellation for Mario Lemieux. One of the singular achievements of Lemieux’s hockey career is being the only person to win a Stanley Cup as a player and team owner. The battles Lemieux has fought with physical pain both on and off the ice while crafting a stellar hockey career makes one proud to wear his Pittsburgh Penguins 66 jersey.
- Bobby Orr’s Boston Bruins hockey jersey 4. Orr became a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame at the age of 31 years old. Orr won two Stanley Cups with the Bruins, and both his most assists and 40 goals in a season set a record for a defenseman which still stands.
- Gordie Howe’s Detroit Red Wings hockey jersey 9. Gordie “Mr. Hockey” Howe was voted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1972. Though most of Howe’s records have been broken by Wayne Gretzky, the records he established for longevity still stand. Howe is the oldest man to play in the NHL at age 52, and he is the only hockey player to play on the same team with two of his sons.
- Bobby Hull’s Chicago Black Hawks hockey jersey 9. Bobby “The Golden Jet” Hull was elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1983. Hull was the first player in the NHL to score more than 50 goals in a season, something he did a total of five times during his NHL career. Hull also led the NHL in goals scored seven times. Hull, originally wore jersey numbers 16 and 7, but changed to number 9 to honor Gordie Howe.
The five most collectible authentic hockey jerseys in this article feature NHL retired greats, who continue to be revered by today’s hockey fans. As long as excellent hockey play resonates with the hockey fans, their jerseys will remain valued commodities.