Review: 2012-13 Panini Limited Hockey

A Panini tradition for several years now, the Limited brand continues in the hockey arena with its usual one pack per box and multiple hits per pack formula. It’s that quick hit that many collectors enjoy breaking into every season to see what they can pull. In this shortened hockey season without new rookies, it is one of those products that may be your only hockey break of the season. So let’s get down to it and see what we pulled in our box of Panini Limited hockey for 2012-13.

Design: 4 stars blue

I actually REALLY like the design aspects in this product, except for one thing, the manufactured patch autographs. I was going to give this 4 1/2, but I had to knock it down because of two manu-patch autographed cards. One of them, the autograph already has some pen bleed on it which is disappointing and one of the main reasons I don’t care for that style of card creation. Other than that, the base designs look great with the color photo of the player and the sepia background. The inserts are solid as well and the other hit look good too. Great design work, but I just hate manu-patches.

Checklist: 4 stars blue

To me, there is a benefit of not having many rookies in the sets this year and that is you can find more veteran content. That has resulted in a pretty decent box we received of this product. Tyson Barrie is a solid defenseman prospect, so that isn’t too shabby. But the highlights are a Hall of Famer game used piece and a future Hall of Famer autograph. One rookie hit, one current veteran hit, and one legend hit. Panini does well mixing in all of these into their product run and it was cool seeing it all come together in one box of a product that usually has quite a few rookie hits. Then again, no new rookies either like Yak, and it’s kinda disappointing. But blame the NHLPA!

Value: 4 stars blue

I believe the box originally retailed at $100 like the typical Limited products, but right now this one is currently sitting at $82 over at DA Card World. Not bad price at all for this product and what I would love to see the product hit the streets at. Panini has eliminated its MAPP policy, so maybe we’ll start seeing better opening value the first few weeks. But as I stated in the checklist area, we received some pretty decent cards in our box with Iginla, Fuhr, and a solid prospect. Overall, I think this box held up its end of the bargain. Others have been worse, but I’ve seen better too. Limited is risky like that.

Overall:4 stars blue

 Overall. A solid four stars. This isn’t your typical four star review as Limited has shown many positives this year. Next year will be interesting though with the double rookie class, but I’m enjoying the product this year for what it is. The design is well done, but I still don’t like those manu-patch autographs. At least Panini has limited their use across the board and you only really see them in two products (Dominion). The checklist is good for this season and really is a testament to what I believe rookies have done to the hobby. Watering down boxes with rookies has been a problem, but this box shows the good of a variety of players. Which not only improves the breaking experience, but adds some better immediate value. We all aren’t prospectors or care for waiting out rookies, so this is a nice change of pace.

Once again, a thank you goes out to Panini America for providing this product to review. You can find them online on their official site, blog, Facebook, and Twitter accounts.

You can find the full checklist of this product over at Cardboard Connection.

Subscribe to us on YouTube to see the live break of this product. And look below to see the cards we pulled from the break!

 

Review: 2012-13 Panini Classics Signatures Hockey

2012-13 Panini Classics hockey is a new product from Panini, perfect for the season of the strike in the NHL. A product that is full of Hall of Famers and legends of the game, you don’t have to worry about players in new jerseys, rookies who hit the ice last season, or redemption cards featuring players that haven’t hit the ice for the first time yet. It is a product that has one autograph per pack and includes some big names. It’s a fun product if you love the history of the game, so let’s see what we pulled from this product:

Design:4 and half stars blue

The design of this product is superb. It really gives you that old school feeling with the classic look around the picture. The look even features some blemishes to make the cards appear classic or old themselves while remaining in pristine condition. Some may argue that sports cards in general are a condition sensitive hobby, which is true, but the look of a blemished or beat up card adds a level of design that you can’t get without actually changing the condition of the card. I’ve been an advocate for designed blemishes on cards for awhile now and I love what the Panini design team has done here. And the spot for the on-card autograph looks perfect. Good work.

Checklist:4 stars blue

The checklist of this product is actually quite interesting. You have Hall of Famers and old school veterans who you don’t find a lot of autographs from. You can find everyone from Jari Kurri to Dave Tippett, we pulled autographs from both. I like the wide range of players as it really showcases some of hockey’s best history from the players who played the game. How many products out there can you find Whalers autographs like this one? As someone who grew up in Connecticut, that was a highlight for me. While I was a youngin even when they left town, these are names I still recognize.

Value:3 and half stars blue

The value is the only place where this product really suffers. You can find this product for $180 currently on DA Card World. That translates to around $30 per pack with each pack having an autograph. While the autographs are classic and from players who don’t have a ton of inked cards, the demand isn’t precisely there unless you pull a big name. It’s a tough sell at that price, but I think $15-$20 a pack would be closer to acceptable for this product. But there are some big names to hit as well so who knows who you might pull.

Overall:4 stars blue

Overall, this is a product with it’s highs and lows. The lows mainly come from how much money is coming out of your wallet, while the highs are definitely high up there. With a very nostalgic feel to the product it definitely has you feeling like watching some old school hockey. The design is old school with the designed blemishes, which I love, especially the die-cuts. The checklist is solid and filled with fan favorites and Hall of Famers. But again, it always comes down to price of the product.

Thanks again goes out to Panini America for providing this product for review. You can find them online on their official site, blog, Twitter, and Facebook.

You can find more information about the product on the Cardboard Connection.

And of course, here’s the video break. After the working with video, we’re going to go back to displaying images with our next batch of reviews. The site is finally all updated so I appreciate the patience.

Review: 2012 Panini Prime Hockey

Now this isn’t your typical break for the site. Usually Panini provides us with awesome product to review, but this time, I decided to buy a product in which I didn’t get a chance to review this year. I went online to my preferred card shop, DA Card World, on Black Friday and got a sweet deal on 2012 Panini Prime hockey. I’ve wanted to try the product for awhile and thought it would be the perfect chance after seeing some fantastic breaks. One pack per box, 4 autograph/memorabilia cards per pack. It is loaded with both the unique and “mojo” goodness you could ask for. Let’s see our box:

Design:

The design is that of a very premium product. A thick card stock, a clean design, and some unique ways to showcase the memorabilia within the cards. The quad design on the rookie autographs is extremely nice, especially with the on-card signatures. It’s one of the ever improving Panini designs that looks good and feels good. Definitely one of the best designs of the year in a new product that I hope to see again in the future. The only real issue I see with the product is one that has been brought up before, and that is the non-athlete picture on the super large memorabilia cards. Yes, that sucks. A great remedy would be to make those cards vertical book cards or have almost a full front picture on the back of the card. Just a couple of ideas for the unique product.

Checklist:

The checklist of Panini Prime is fantastic. You have all of your top rookies with their rookie autographs and other types of memorabilia cards, but also all of the top stars in the game featured in every way imaginable in the product. The product impresses with the large number of superstars and veterans of the game. Though you may hit a rookie autograph, in a not very strong rookie class, you can easily make up for it with some great veteran content thanks to the checklist put together. So with a great checklist, you also will find great…

Value:

Yeah, weird isn’t it? Products like this are usually extremely hit or miss. The product originally launched at $200, but now sits at around $170 at DA Card World. I did receive it on Black Friday for $150. This product seems to have found the perfect balance between quality of hits and price. I hit two rookie autographed memorabilia cards, one other first year autograph, but the regular memorabilia card made up for it in several ways. The memorabilia loaded into this product really adds a great bit of value with the huge swatches, multi-color patches, letter marks, all of that premium stuff. It was a great product put together that I even wrote raving about before I had a chance to open it myself. This box proved my point.

Overall:

Overall, Panini Prime is one fine product from the hockey folks at Panini. I was all geared up for the product, saw the hot breaks, wrote about how great it was, and the box proved me right. Don’t you love when that happens? The design is beautiful in mostly all phases of production, but there are a couple tweaks that I would add to make it that much better. The checklist is loaded with all the talent Panini could muster and the value is through the roof with some of the amazing pulls you can find in the product. Job well done.

You can check out the full checklist and other info over on Cardboard Connection.

Check out the video as I pull some sweet cards you won’t want to miss. (Jumbo patch of a superstar anyone?)

Review: 2011-12 Panini Rookie Anthology Hockey

Happy Canada Day to all of my Canadian readers out there. And when you think of Canada there is only one thing that comes to mind…Santa! No, no, I mean hockey. The greatest thing Canada has given to the world of sport is our review for the day. 2011-12 Panini Rookie Anthology hockey is kind of a mish-mash product that features designs from several products as well as it’s own design. The reasoning is that there were several cards from other products that either weren’t returned in time for pack out or maybe the rookies didn’t get any ice time with the big club until after pack out. This allows Panini the opportunity to use some of the favorite designs for collectors and have them feature some of their favorite players and rookies. Sound good? It is. Let’s see the review.

Design:

Favorite designs of the year? Check. Great designs from the past? Double check. Great new design for the base cards? Triple check. Seriously, while this is a mish-mash of products thrown into this one product, they definitely picked some of the best designs of the year. Crown Royale, Luxury Suite, Pinnacle, and the new Rookie Anthology design..how can this be not good? We all know the other designs so I’ll get into the Rookie Anthology design. A crisp and clean design, it features a white background with the player really popping off the card. Add in some foil highlights and a slightly thicker card stock and this has the look and feel of a premium product. At first glance and feel I felt like I was opening Ultimate Collection by their competitor, but then saw the beauty of these cards. It was really a fantastic job by the design team on this product.

Checklist:

The checklist is a lot of rookies that made their debut later in the season at the most, with a few of the top rookies sprinkled in with some veterans. This checklist is based off of the rookie class, so it’s not going to be terribly good. But you can’t fault Panini for that too much. They could of loaded it up with more RNH, Landeskog, etc., but they chose to highlight more of the newer rookies. The addition of some veteran hits helped ease the pain a bit, but it seems to be lacking some rookie talent. Again, more of an issue with the actual talent instead of the checklist. It’s been that way all season.

Value:

The value is there, but the checklist isn’t making this a huge must get product. The addition of veteran hits and the box topper really helped this product a bit. I think someone on the team saw something lacking and wanted to amp it up a bit, and that idea really helped.  Having 5 hits in a $100 product is pretty decent as well compared to the usual 3-4 hits in most products at that price point. The memorabilia/autos are very nice and helps add in some value as well, but the plain game used jerseys are kind of dull. I really liked the stick additions once again the Luxury Suite design.  It’s a crazy product with some crazy results, but there are some big hits to be had as well.

Overall:

Overall, rounding up, it’s a very good product in a line of recent solid products from the company. The designs are fantastic and are really what make this product very good from the get go. The idea behind the product to get those newer rookies out there and some of the cards that weren’t returned in time for pack out was a great idea to reduce the load on redemptions as well as create something new for the collectors. This mish-mash style worked well in basketball with the shortened season and I think Panini proved it can work well in other sports as well. While the checklist isn’t the great, they’ve upped the hits to kind of make up for it in terms of value and that always helps in a $100 product. With a few veteran cards scattered amongst the set, Rookie Anthology is a great idea and addition from Panini.

Thanks again to the people at Panini for providing this box for review. You can find them online on their official site, blog, Twitter, and Facebook.

And here’s the haul…

Review: 2011-12 Panini Contenders Hockey

Contenders is back with a bang for it’s sophomore season. The previews of the product looked like a much needed upgrade to a product that crossed similar lines as its counterpart in football. Last season, I thought this product could contend with SP Authentic as the top product for rookie autographs. Little did I know, the product would include upgrades that made it almost identical to that product in terms of content.

2011-12 Panini Contenders hockey is now set up to be a winner in the hockey card arena. While Panini continues to establish it’s name amongst hockey collectors, this product is a great example of the things they can do to compete in that marketplace. All of these good things written and you haven’t seen the review yet…right. Let’s check that out.

Design:

Panini said they were going to work on their designs and they are truly doing that. I’ll start with the negative on why I wouldn’t give this 5 stars. The white boxes for the rookie autographs are a bit out of place. It’s not as bad as other products, but it could still be a little better. And also, what happened to the ticket design? I love the ticket design…is that going to remain football only while Panini carves out the landscape? But all of that doesn’t matter when you see how clean these cards look. They’re just pretty to look at. Like that really cute girl you might see walking around. Not that really hot one you have no chance with, but the really cute one you might buy a couple drinks for at the bar. Comparing cards to girls…I should start doing that more often.

Checklist:

Contenders is known for the rookie autographs.  Obviously, there are a ton of rookie autographs in this product. So you’ll be able to find a ton of great rookie autographs from all around the league. The one issue that I’ve seen the most complaints about is the checklist for NHL Ink. There are a lot of no name type players on that checklist people are having a hard time swallowing. As for me, I like the addition of players who aren’t rookies and the veterans in the patch autograph realm which is usually reserved for rookies. At least the non-rookies you know can play in the league and probably won’t wash out. It really just depends what you collect and what you expect in a product like this.

Value:

From what I’ve seen, for $100 this is very hit or miss. Again, kind of like SP Authentic which is a natural comparison. The rookie class is kind of a weak one, so it makes it hard to want to spend this type of cash on a product that has very little to perk you up. Another reason Panini did a good job adding what it added this year. The rookie class is providing lower than usual value, so add in some great chase cards. I was lucky, however, and pulled a redemption for a card that’s worth about the same amount as the box. You may hit a really nice patch autograph, a sweet veteran autograph, or something nice and low numbered. Again, it’s just hit or miss. I have to also mention the less inserts this year, which I kind of miss as well. I miss the acetate cards and the Leather Larceny from last year. But the inserts this year kind of fall well in line with the rest of the theme, so I can’t complain too much. Plus less inserts is sometimes better.

Overall:

Overall, this is still a fantastic second year product from Panini. The design is very pleasing to the eye and very clean all around. When people say you have a clean looking card, you know you did a very good job according to their eye. The checklist has all the rookies you could want, but leaves a little bit to be desired as far as the non-rookie autographs go. Colin Greening was my non-rookie hit…not a terrible player at all but others haven’t been so fortunate. But my real value came with my redemption card. With the rookie class being weak, Panini did a solid job adding value to what seemed like something you may not get much out of. Patch autographs in the product really add to the value, but I wasn’t lucky enough to pull one of those beautiful cards. It’ll be hit or miss mostly because of the rookies this year, but that’s not Panini’s fault.

I’d like to thank Panini America for providing this box for review. You can find them on their official site, blog, Twitter, Facebook, and everywhere else online. Let them know what you think of this product.

Not shown: Redemption for NHL Ink Dual Autograph Gabriel Landeskog/Ryan Nugent-Hopkins