2 Weeks Until the Showdown!

That’s right, it’s two weeks until the showdown between Upper Deck The Cup and Panini Dominion hockey.

I know that 2010-11 Upper Deck The Cup is already out and I, for one, have already ordered my box. Now hopefully, I can somehow get my slimy paws on a box of 2010-11 Panini Dominion hockey too so I can give you the showdown of the century. This is a battle of two heavyweights, call it Ali v. Frazier if you will. I’ve been waiting for this showdown since I first heard about Dominion coming out, especially with my beloved Hartford Whalers having their own subset.

I’m not sure I’ll be able to not open The Cup when it gets here in a few days. Luckily, since Dave and Adam’s Card World is one of the few certified dealers,  I was able to get 8 free packs of 2008-09 ITG Heroes & Prospects packs to hold me. I was also able to grab a bunch of team bags that I’ll be needing before I ran out of cash as well.

That’s right, because of you Upper Deck my box breaking fund is now down to $2.54. I’ll now need to come up with a plan to get some 2010-11 Panini Dominion in two weeks with very little resources. Think I can do it?

Preview: 2010-11 Panini Dominion Hockey Subsets

 

With 2010-11 Panini Dominion and 2010-11 Upper Deck The Cup arriving soon, I thought it would be fun to go over some of the subsets from each product with a little comment on each. Of course, there will be pictures too! With these two juggernauts going head to head at the end of the month, it’s only natural to want to compare the two. So up first, we have some of the subsets from 2010-11 Panini Dominion hockey.

Rookie Auto Patch:

Oh Taylor Hall, how I have avoided you in every product I’ve opened this year is remarkable. My last chance is Dominion and I would love to pull this autograph patch from a box. Very nice clean area for an on-card signature and a nice big window for a sweet patch. This is a very pretty card that any collector would love to pull from any rookie.

Bonded in Silver Dual Signatures:

This looks a lot like the 2010-11 Panini Luxury Suite design but with a Stanley Cup in the middle. While I think it could look better, the lettering really stands out and the dual on-card autographs look good. I’d just prefer something we haven’t really seen before.

Strapping Lads:

I can’t help but laugh when I read the title of this subset. Strapping Lads. Ah yes…Sidney is a strapping young lad now isn’t he? But this is all about game used fight straps and the little buttons look pretty sweet on the card. I also enjoy the design here with the lettering on the left. Original designs for the product are always good!

Franchise Legends:

Oh Panini, why such a small piece of jersey in this high end product?

Had It, Stamped It:

While the title may be a little corny, the cards definitely are not. Look at those name plates from their sticks…so beautiful looking and a pleasure for anyone to pull.

Pen Pals:

I’m not liking the name here either, but the cards still look good again. I prefer something like “Linemates” or something along those lines when using dual autographs like this.

Got Your Number:

I’m not sure about the design on this card, but the idea of having similar players with the same number is intriguing at least.

And there are tons more! Including NHL Shield patches, more stick cards, a Hartford Whalers subset, and even signed tape used on the player’s sticks! There is even more then that too, this is just a little taste of what can be found when the product goes live in the first couple weeks of September.

Just check out my official preview of Dominion for some more links to see some more awesome cards in this set.

Coming up soon is some images coming from 2010-11 Upper Deck The Cup!

Countdown: 2010-11 Upper Deck The Cup vs. Panini Dominion

It’s the old versus the new. The veteran versus the rookie. The champ versus the newcomer. It’s less than 2 weeks away from the release of 2010-11 Upper Deck The Cup hockey and less than a month away from the release of 2010-11 Panini Dominion hockey. The countdown is huge and everyone is waiting for this last hockey product of the year from the two hockey trading card companies. What kinds of punches will each company throw?

Well a lot of punches have already been thrown on the Twitter scene. The Panini America twitter has been using the hashtag #TheCupKiller while showing off some sweet pictures of some of the sweet cards that will be in the product. The Upper Deck twitter has been hot as well showing off some sweet patch 1 of 1s of some of the game’s top players and some awesome rookie patch autographs. But which product is going to be the king?

The Cup is released 2 weeks earlier so Upper Deck is going to have a slight edge as those who really want both are going to be getting their boxes of Upper Deck product earlier. Panini originally tried going head to head with a release the next day, but that was shot down by the NHLPA. So collectors will have to wait 2 weeks until Dominion hits the shelves.

So far, the concepts and designs look good on both sides. Upper Deck always includes some of the most beautiful patch cards you have ever seen in this high end offering. While we haven’t seen this type of product from Panini in the hockey arena yet, I would expect them to match Upper Deck with the patches as that is something that fans from every sport admire. Both companies are offering stamped game used sticks with the player’s name on them which is a great piece for all hockey and player collectors.

Something Panini is offering that has never been seen before is autographed tape from the player’s sticks. That is a great concept and idea that is new to hockey cards and something collectors are anxious to see. So the “new concept” edge has to go to Panini in this regard. The Cup seems to have the same types of hits as in years past, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Collectors love The Cup the way it is, so there is nothing wrong with very little changes to a proven hit product. Panini is trying to make a name for themselves in the very high end hockey arena with collectors, so they are doing everything in their power to show off their capabilities.

Price points are about the same but it’s still a large chunk of change if you want to get both. I’m going to be trying to get my hands on a box of each for a head to head style of review which should reach epic proportions. Imagine this: two boxes sitting on my desk, opening each at the same time, showing off base cards one by one, then on to the hits comparing the intricacies of each product as I run down each card. I can see the beauty that would unfold on camera with my jaw dropped pretty much the whole time.

I, for one, am excited for this new offering from Panini and this already top of the class product from Upper Deck. Will it be The Cup Killer as Panini has been advertising? Or will it fall victim to the veteran and have to go back to the drawing board next year? 2 weeks time for The Cup to be in your possession, and 4 weeks for Dominion to make it’s debut.

It’s a great time to be a hockey collector with these two products going head to head.

NHLPA Forcing Further Delay of 2010-11 Panini Dominion Hockey

We as collectors are always disappointed with delays in products. 2010-11 Panini Dominion has already been delayed more than once. Now it’s being delayed once again, but this time it is not for any reasons Panini can control.

The NHLPA is forcing the delay of 2010-11 Panini Dominion hockey two extra weeks until a September 14, 2011, release date. The only positive coming out of this for collectors is that it gives Panini extra time to acquire autographs so there will not be as many redemptions. Everything else is a negative.

As most in the hobby know, the last day for 2010-11 NHL licensed products to be released is August 31st every year. The NHLPA has given an extension for this highly sought product because the NHLPA does not want 2010-11 Panini Dominion matching up with 2010-11 Upper Deck The Cup. The two highest of all high end hockey products will not go head to head in the last couple of days of the hockey card season. Instead, the NHLPA is forcing the delay so that each company can try and move more product.

Of course, moving more product means the NHLPA gets a bigger cut of the money. So a special exception was made for the two hockey heavyweights.

What does this mean for collectors? I’m thinking because The Cup is released 2 weeks earlier, collectors are going to go to Upper Deck’s product first. The big question is will people have the time to reload if they weren’t sure which one they were going to purchase and are just purchasing the first released product? Panini seems to be getting the short end of the stick for their first very high end hockey product in my opinion. People are often weary of a first time product and the fact Upper Deck gets the first shot with collectors for a full two weeks means there just may be less money going around from collectors to purchase a second product. The MSRP for buying both products is a staggering $800.

How will the delay effect you as a collector if you planned on purchasing one or both of these great products? Will you have time to reload the funds? Will you just be buying Upper Deck’s The Cup because it’s released earlier? Do you think the NHLPA should of got involved?

I mean it totally makes sense from the money standpoint for the NHLPA to do this, but as a collector it just sucks.

Preview Update: 2010-11 Panini Dominion Hockey Brass Bonanza Found

I asked Tracy Hackler of Panini for an image of what the Hartford Whalers Brass Bonanza set would look like so I could see what I will be searching the ends of the earth for. He got back to me he that he would find something for me.

In the mean time, I’ve done my own detective work. This is PROBABLY what Tracy would of sent me anyway. Maybe I can convince him to send me an image of a card not seen yet.

But I unveil you this:

Oh it was so tiny. Now it’s blurry because I had to make it bigger. But at least this will give you an idea of what to look for all you Whaler fans out there.

It looks like Shanny is confirmed.

My personal checklist would be:

Gordie Howe (UD exclusive, sadly), Brendan Shanahan, Ron Francis, Bobby Hull, Kevin Dineen, Geoff Sanderson, Pat Verbeek, Dave Babych, Ulf Samuelsson, Dave Keon, Sean Burke and Mike Liut

I would add Andrew Cassels just for the fact he has the most career goals…knocked in with his face. Check out his first goal with his face and his second goal with his face.

Anyone else going to go for the full set of Bonanza Brass? I can’t wait for July to come.