Panini Continues Their Exclusive Deal For NBA Trading Cards

Just announced within the last couple of hours, Panini America has extended their exclusive deal as the sole company to provide NBA basketball cards to collectors out there in a new multi-year agreement.

Most of the responses on the Twitterverse have been positive, with several congratulatory messages to the only company to have a presence in all four major sports along with FIFA and several entertainment ventures. Even Kobe Bryant got in on the announcement where he stated, “[Panini] brings trading cards back to having a cool factor” and “Panini will be on the cutting edge of what they do.”

Personally as a collector, I’m not a huge fan of exclusive deals because I like the variety of products. I say the same thing when it comes to baseball cards. On a plus note, there are less rookie autographs out there so it helps with the value a bit. Did you see the Kyrie Irving autographs earlier this season on eBay? Wow. Or the Jeremy Lins last year? Two very good examples on how it shapes the market. As a business move, it’s a great move for Panini in securing those rights, so kudos on that. And with the expansion of products into China, Panini is moving into a strong Asian market for basketball collectibles.

Panini is here to stay in the NBA trading card arena. For more information on the deal visit their official blog.

 

Preview: 2012 Cryptozoic Big Bang Theory Seasons 3 and 4 Trading Cards

Bazinga. I fooled you all with a product that isn’t sports!

From time to time I like to showcase products that really make me interested. Whether it be Benchwarmer products, comic book products, or TV series products like this. Big Bang Theory is one of the highest rated shows on television and it has captivated me and my fiance for a couple of years now. While I didn’t get to open last year’s product, when I heard it was coming back again I was ecstatic.

Big Bang Theory Seasons 3 and 4 trading cards are coming back this year and feature some sweet additions to the product. This time around, you’ll be able to find autographed wardrobe cards featuring an autograph (on-card of course) and a piece of wardrobe used from everyone’s favorite show. This brings you closer to Sheldon Cooper then ever before…especially if you may have met him while he was a robot.

At 24 packs per box and 5 cards per pack, you’re bound to get almost the complete set of cards. There are some other chase elements as well other than the typical wardrobe and autograph cards that you’ll find one of each of per box. You can put together the mini set of the story of “The Elevator” for instance. Or put together “The Duos” cards featuring some of the relationships that have developed during the show. It looks to be a lot of fun and if you like the show, you’ll love the collectibles.

So get ready on October 26, 2012. For $80 a box, which is very affordable in the trading card world, prepare to have your atoms knocked off.

Find out more at the Cryptozoic website!

NFL Week 4 SCB Rookie of the Week

Week 4 is in the books and the rookies continue to shine in the league. With some fantastic quarterback play this week from the likes of Robert Griffin III and Ryan Tannehill, you would expect that a quarterback would win this one easily. Not so fast. There was also some great running backs on display as well. But we aren’t going with one of them either. Receivers? Nope. Okay, so maybe you picked someone on defense. Chandler Jones has been outstanding this year for the Patriots, it has to be him. Sorry, it’s not Chandler Jones.

The NFL Week 4 SCB Rookie of the Week is a kicker.

Greg Zuerlein of the St. Louis Rams did things that a rookie kicker has never done in a game. He also did things that any kicker in the history of the game has never done in a game. He was that good against the Seahawks this week as he went 4 for 4 in field goals hitting one from 58 and one from 60 in the same game. The 60 yarder was a franchise record (as was the 58 yarder earlier in the game) and he is the first kicker in history to hit one from both 60+ and 50+ in the same game. Not bad for a first year kicker.

While I don’t think Greg Zuerlein has ANY football cards, I’d imagine he would be a great addition to any Rams or kicker collector. Let’s try and get Greg his first NFL football trading card, eh?

Review: 2012-13 Panini NBA Hoops Basketball

Well yesterday we reviewed a product that was low end on the football side in 2012 Score football, and today we visit a low end product on the hardcourt with 2012-13 Panini NBA Hoops basketball. Hoops basketball has a long tradition in basketball trading cards and was recently brought back last season in the hopes to bring the name recognition back up to the forefront of basketball collectors. Well, it made it back for a second season and with a price tag of $2 per pack, it’s a low end product that everyone should be able to enjoy. Want to see what the cards look like and what we pulled? Well only after you read the review…

Design:

NBA Hoops features a classic looking design that features the classic NBA Hoops brand logo front and center. Normally, I’m not a huge fan of such product pimping, but it fits in pretty well in the design of these cards. The action photography is great in this product for the base cards, with several nice insert sets as well filling out the product. Even the Kobe Anthology packs had some sweet looking Kobe cards inside. All around, this is a well designed product and at $2 per pack, it’s a win-win situation. Often times, low end products look low end. This has a real classic look that makes putting a set together worth the time and effort.

Checklist:

First, what makes this better than last year is the fact that you WILL find 2012-13 rookies in this product. Also, the product goes back old school with the inclusion of NBA coach cards in the product. Those are two automatic wins right there. Including all the other stars, bench players, and some legends in the product and you have an all around juggernaut of a checklist. Oh, two autographs as well in a box and a mini set devoted to Kobe Bryant? This deserves more than the 5 stars it churned out. You get a set worthy of putting together, a subset of a living legend, and some hits on top of it. Duh, winning.

Value:

And the product keeps on winning when it comes to value. 2 autographs per box. $2 per pack. Some hard to find SPs. The first autographed trading cards of Kyrie Irving. Autographs from some of the top picks of this year’s DEEP NBA draft. Ladies and gentlemen, Panini showcases once again that it knows how to make a low end product and deliver it to the masses. I’d argue that the NBA Hoops line is the best low end product on the market currently, and I’m a pretty big fan of Score and it’s $1 a pack price point. If you collect for fun, collect to put sets together, find cards of your favorite team, or try and grab some autographs for your collection, how could you go wrong with this product in terms of value? Good luck finding better.

Overall:

Panini knew it would be easy to plug up the holes that this product had last year. They did it, plus a bit, and put out one of their best all around basketball releases in awhile. The design is classic, which is perfect for a classic brand like NBA Hoops. The checklist is finally filled out and features just about everyone in the league plus some legends. Plus, you can have the opportunity to put together a set of just Kobe Bryant. At $2 a pack, you’re living a dream getting 2 autographs in a box. And I would have felt the same way if I pulled two scrub autographs as well. I did in last year’s product and gave it just about the same grades.

As always, a big thank you to Panini for providing this box for review. You can find them online at their official site, blog, Twitter, or Facebook.

Oh I didn’t show you that I pulled probably one of the best boxes in the whole print run, huh? Well let’s see some cards, eh?

Preview: 2012 Upper Deck Soccer

The MLS season has already started and Upper Deck is ready to start their season on the pitch. Upper Deck will be coming out with their flagship brand for the MLS season in a few days and will feature all of the stars of “The Beautiful Game” here in the States.

Each box will contain 20 packs and 12 cards in each pack. You will be getting a ton of cards in a box of this product. Each box will also contain at least 1 autograph and 4 memorabilia cards. This product not only has a great number of beautifully designed base cards, but a good number of hits too to get you amped up for the rest of the soccer season. I’m sorry, futbol season.

You will also find a few newcomers in this set as well to get some of you favorite new rookies from the draft. With rookies, veterans, and some sweet autographs and memorabilia pieces, this looks like a worthwhile product for soccer fans.

At just under $100 a box, this is great for hit collectors, set collectors, or just plain old soccer fans here in the States…or abroad if you happen to like US soccer for some reason compared to any other league. You’ll be able to find this on shelves tomorrow, July 10, 2012, at your local card shop or online.