October 2012 Sports Card Releases

It’s October. The end of baseball season. The start of basketball and, well maybe, hockey. Football rages on as well as the products. And me as well, as my birthday falls in October and is one of the favorite days of the year for baseball collectors…can you guess which day? Anyway, products will be updated as I write the previews, so previews are coming soon.

BASEBALL:

2012 Topps Update Baseball – October 3, 2012 – $60 – 6/10

Full preview coming soon.

2012 Bowman Chrome Baseball – October 17, 2012 – $68 – 8/10

Full preview coming soon.

2012 Panini Cooperstown Baseball – October 24, 2012 – $90 – 8/10

Panini’s ventures into baseball return with Cooperstown baseball, a product based around Hall of Famers and those with special displays in the Hall. Featuring some sweet autographs from legends in the Baseball Hall, you’re bound to find something you like if you’re a historian of the game.

BASKETBALL:

2011-12 Upper Deck Exquisite Basketball – October 16, 2012 – $870 – 8/10

Full preview coming soon.

2012-13 Panini Threads Basketball – October 24, 2012 – $96 – 7/10

Full preview coming soon.

FOOTBALL:

2012 Upper Deck University of Alabama Football – October 2, 2012 – $45 – 6/10

Full preview coming soon.

2012 Panini Certified Football – October 17, 2012 – $100 – 8/10

Full preview coming soon.

2012 Panini Gridiron Football – October 24, 2012 – $110 – 7/10

Full preview coming soon.

HOCKEY:

2012-13 Upper Deck Artifacts Hockey – October 2, 2012 – $96 – 8/10

Full preview coming soon.

2012-13 In The Game Forever Rivals Hockey – October 13, 2012 – $100 – 7/10

Full preview coming soon.

SPECIAL:

Cryptozoic Big Bang Theory Season 3 and 4 Trading Cards – October 26, 2012 – $75 – 10/10

Bazinga.

Upper Deck Evolution Video Trading Cards in 11-12 The Cup Hockey

As a surprise from Upper Deck, 2011-12 Upper Deck The Cup hockey features their newest versions of their Evolution video trading cards, featuring some of the hottest rookies in the game today.

Each card takes the form of a redemption, with a player randomly being assigned to the holder of the redemption. These redemptions are then sent to the collectors with the player unknown until the collector opens their package. It’s interesting as it makes you feel like you are opening a pack all over again, really hoping to pull a Ryan Nugent-Hopkins or Gabriel Landeskog.

Now one of the big questions from collectors, with Upper Deck’s rival providing limited signatures on their video cards, is whether these cards will contain some ink from the player on them. Well, sadly, the answer is no. But I recently emailed super UD guru in Marketing Chris Carlin to ask why they decided against autographs. I’ll let his response speak for itself.

In our quest to innovate, we are trying to develop different types of trading cards that do not rely on the same old drivers that make them collectible like memorabilia and signatures. By creating innovative new content we are hopeful to inspire collectors to hunt different types of cards where original content is the main driver. That is the goal with Evolution at this time.

I, personally, applaud Upper Deck’s stance on this issue. It really is about time to change the dynamics of card collecting a bit. With game used memorabilia pieces and autographs driving the current market, the industry could use a kick in its ass to find some new content that will inspire and create hype for a product.

At the same time, as a collector, I really wish these cards had autographs on them. I mean, at this point, where else can you find a Ryan Nugent-Hopkins video card…let alone one with an actual autograph on it? I will never stop loving autographs, so I really wish they would have included them on these inserts.

What are your thoughts on the omission of autographs? Do you agree with Upper Deck or would you rather have some signatures on those video cards?

Read more about the cards on Upper Deck’s official blog.

 

Preview: 2011-12 Upper Deck The Cup Hockey

The Cup is coming.

We are less than one week away from one of the hottest releases of the season in hockey. The ultra high-end The Cup hockey is back for the craziest of hockey collectors. The one pack per tin product is always a hit and features some of the most valuable cards of the collecting season.

As is common with the product, you will find 5 card per pack/tin of The Cup. Some of the more valuable pulls are the rookie patch autographs which you find one per box. Upper Deck has stepped it up this year with an additional patch autograph in the product from either another rookie or a veteran. The final hit is another autograph, memorabilia, or rare paralleled card. To round out the box, you’ll have 2 base cards as well.

But it’s not just about the rookies. It’s also about the sweet veteran cards as well. With the Limited Logos insert set, you can find some of the greatest patches anywhere or patch autographs from some of the top talent in the game. Also popular is the Draft Board autographs which are back again, possibly for the final season due to who gets use of the memorabilia. You’ll also continue to find Scripted Swatches, autographed on-patch cards, and a fan favorite as it brings a ton of cash on the secondary market, NHL Shield cards.

The product is just loaded with everything that hockey collectors love, rookies, sweet patches autographs, legends, superstars, and book cards. The high price may scare some collectors away, but the die hard collectors know how great the product is time after time and love the rush.

The Cup is released on September 11, 2012, and should run you around $400 for a box if prices haven’t moved since last season.

For more information and a checklist when it’s available, check out the product details on Cardboard Connection.

Panini Prime Hockey Released…Best of the Year?

2011-12 Panini Prime hockey was released today and I’ve been watching box breaks of the product all afternoon and everything that I’ve seen I’ve been hugely impressed with. In a time where football products are just getting started and the hockey season is well over, this treat before Dominion is exactly what Panini needed to remind collectors that their season isn’t over yet.

From game used letters, to giant swatches of patches and regular jersey cards, to strings from the jerseys, beautiful on card autographs, this product has everything you could probably want in a product with a price half of Dominion.

With some amazing and colorful cards to be had, the breaks look like a ton of fun. It feels almost like the “Gold Standard” product moved to hockey, but with a much better usage of the game used hits. Instead of small plain jerseys, there are a ton of large swatches and large patch cards. It’s a formula that the basketball and football teams could use in their similar products.

Either way, Prime hockey looks to be one of the best hockey products of the season. All around with the design and the beauty, quality, and uniqueness of the hits, it’s going to be hard to beat Panini Prime as a product. Will Dominion or The Cup take over or can Prime sustain the current title of one of the best of the year?

Hockey fans, what do you think of Prime hockey?

September 2012 Sports Card Releases

Now I did terrible on previewing for the August sports card releases. I blame that of course on my wedding and honeymoon. Grad school isn’t as big of a hurdle as family coming into town and being in a few foreign countries without decent internet access. So as always, here is a list of products coming out this September including my rating of excitement.

Baseball:

2012 Topps Baseball Minor League Heritage – September 12, 2012 – $68 – 6/10

A product I still personally don’t care about makes a return featuring some of the best prospects in the game that are currently down on the farm getting ready for their call ups. Full preview coming soon.

2012 Topps Triple Threads Baseball – September 19, 2012 – $200 – 7/10

Never really been a huge fan of the product and have been advocating a complete change over or removal of the product, but it’s coming out again for another season. Some nice cards to be had though, it’s just a matter of preference. Full preview coming soon.

Basketball:

2011-12 Upper Deck Fleer Retro Basketball – September 6, 2012 – $300 – 7/10

I’m not sure what to expect in this product from Upper Deck, but from what I’ve seen it’s a lot of old Fleer designs with rookies and legends of the game in their college uniforms.

2012-13 Panini Prestige Basketball – September 14, 2012 – $96 – 7/10

Getting into more of the full season of NBA products from Panini with their second release of the season, before the season even starts! Full preview coming soon.

Football:

2012 Panini Momentum Football – September 12, 2012 – $200 – 8/10

This looks like a great rookie product from Panini which features some sweet rookies, some sweet autographs, and some sweet memorabilia cards. A whole lot of hits in this product.

2012 Panini Prominence Football – September 19, 2012 – $100 – 7/10

More from the hottest rookie class in years with another Panini debut in their football brands. Full preview coming soon.

2012 Topps Platinum Football – September 12, 2012 – $110 – 8/10

Not a bad looking product from Topps with 3 autographs per box and a ton of refractors, especially with this awesome rookie class. But Topps and foilboard? OHMAHGERD! Full preview coming soon.

2012 Upper Deck University of Alabama Football – September 25, 2012 – $46 – 6/10

Roll Tide. Upper Deck comes out with another college football team themed product after last year’s products. I wasn’t a fan then, not really a fan now. Full preview coming soon.

Hockey:

2011-12 Upper Deck The Cup Hockey – September 11, 2012 – $400 – 9/10

One of the best all around products of the year returns again as the final product of the 2011-12 hockey season from Upper Deck. Will it live up to it’s usual hype? Probably. Full preview coming soon.

2011-12 Panini Dominion Hockey – September 26, 2012 – $400 – 9/10

The competitor to The Cup is coming back for it’s sophomore season making the necessary improvements it needs and it looks fantastic. Will it finally dethrone The Cup?

Other:

2012 Upper Deck SP Authentic Golf – September 25, 2012 – ? – 8/10

Golf has made it’s return and it features some sweet autographs including the first ever autographs from Ernie Els! Full preview coming soon.