Now looking at Fleer Cubs cards from the 2000's
I must admit that, based on a very small sample, I never liked Fleer. I bought the complete set Fleer's first and second years, 1981 and 1982. I was a Topps guy and Fleer did nothing in those first two years to change my mind. And for the next 26 years, I didn't see another Fleer card and had a negative view of Fleer.
I completed my Topps Cubs sets in the winter of 2008 and in the spring I turned my attention to getting all the Fleer Cubs cards. While they certainly improved as the years went on, nothing from the 80's and 90's did much for me.
That changed with the cards from 2000. This was the third year of Fleer Tradition, although I do not know what the "tradition" was with the first two years. But they sure seemed to nail it with the 2000 set. I loved these cards. They looked and felt like old time cards. In fact they looked just like Topps 1954.
Here is what the Topps 1954 cards looked like
I wonder if Topps considered a lawsuit. And the backs even had some cartoons in the style of early Topps. I would have to think that this is the set that prompted Topps to bring out the first Heritage set the following year.
Here are some of my favorite Cubs cards from 2000
This team card is the only Cubs team card ever issued by Fleer.
Mark Grace, looking very suave
Sammy Sosa, with a smaller picture of him doing his hop.
Kerry Wood, with his game face. With that look and a 95 mile per hour fastball, I would think more that one hitter would have been imtimidated.
and a cartoon on the back.
Jon Lieber, not looking very suave, with a cartoon on the back of his card, too
This checklist has a very old school look to it with the floating head of Sammy in the corner.
And one of the many Cubs prospect flops, Raul Gonzalez