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Welcome to The Real DFG's Pittsburgh Penguin Autograph Project. My goal is to eventually try and get at least one autograph of every player to lace up the skates in an NHL game for the Pittsburgh Penguins. It could have been for one game or 700 games, I will add them. Occasionally I may post cards of former players in their new team uniforms. While the goal is to get autos in Pens uni's, it isn't always possible. Since the team has been in existence since 1967, the list is pretty large. Last I checked, it was somewhere in the range of 624 different players. Currently, I sit at about 100 autographs (with some duplication). Enjoy the posts.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Mike Bullard

Bully was a guy that I always remember my dad talking about (and not necessarily in a good way all the time).  He had natural scoring talent and showed that in his years with the OHA Brantford Alexanders.  From 1978-80, he recorded 356 points in only 174 games, prompting the Pens to use their first round selection in the 1980 NHL Draft.

Bullard scored over 30 goals four times with the Penguins, including 51 in 1983-84.  He also played in the All-Star game in 1984 and represented Canada in 1986.  He was team captain for the Pens from 1984-86.  But all that scoring ability never helped the hapless Pens because these were the "bad years" before Mario.  In fact, Bullard's best year with the 51 goals was accompanied by a -33 rating on a team that basically was playing for the #1 pick.

After being traded to Calgary for Dan Quinn, he put up 54 points followed by a 1987-88 campaign that netted him a career best 103 points.  But that wasn't enough to keep him in Calgary and he was sent packing to the Blues in exchange for Doug Gilmour (missing out on Calgary's Stanley Cup win).  After only 20 games, he was traded to the Flyers where he finished out that season and played one more.

In 1990, he went to Switzerland to play in the Swiss league but still wanted to come back to the NHL.  Toronto gave him an opportunity but it wasn't meant to be and his time in the NHL had passed.  But his career in Europe was only beginning.  He went on to play for 12 more seasons, one in Switzerland and 11 in Germany.

Bullard is the head coach of the Caledonia Pro-Fit Corvairs, a junior hockey team in the GOJHL (Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League) who, as of writing this, were undefeated for the 2013/14 season thus far.

This card is from the 1985-86 O-Pee-Chee set (you know, the one with that other Penguin card).  It is signed in person by Mike in blue Sharpie.  

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