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Upper Deck takes aim at fairway with new releases

By Chris Olds | Editor

Upper Deck has its sights set on a return to the golf world sometime soon and a pair of future products will include a golf card first and a big batch of Tiger Woods.

Those are things that golf fans — who have been without a set of their own since 2005 — will undoubtedly appreciate.

Up first, is a first — Bubba Watson‘s first Upper Deck golf card. It will appear in 2011 Goodwin Champions, which will arrive later this year.

Upper Deck’s Sports Marketing and Social Media Manager Chris Carlin had additional details.

“We’ve reached a deal with the 2011 Farmers Insurance Open winner for image rights and autographs,” he said. “That’s kind of big news as many were wondering if we would ever produce Goodwin Champions again. The last Goodwin Champions set had a lot of very unique and innovative trading card inserts sets, so we are very excited to bring that product back with even more bells and whistles that will be announced in the coming months.

“Watson’s first autograph cards will appear in 2011 Upper Deck Ultimate Champions, a cross-sport product with a high-end look and feel.”

The second item — a whole lot of Tiger — can be seen after the jump.

And what’s the story with these Tigers? They’re from an NHL set. Read below…

“These are redemptions from the 2009-10 NHL The Cup Retro Rookie Autograph Patch cards,” Carlin said. “Only five have been redeemed so far, [and] five more are waiting to be claimed. We’ll be sending out the five who redeemed their cards out shortly. As you can see, all the patches are just awesome and come from tournament-worn memorabilia.”

Woods, an Upper Deck exclusive, appears on 856 different cards , but just 181 of those are autographs. Most Tiger sigs are short-printed and among the priciest cards made featuring a living signer.

That appeal — that demand — wasn’t lost on Upper Deck as it works through a collecting landscape with a CLC license and a smaller pro license portfolio than in the past.

“Since partnering with Tiger Woods, Upper Deck has featured him in MLB, NFL, NBA, NHL, Golf and even CLC trading card releases,” Carlin said. “Tiger is included in these sets because we’ve found there is huge demand for Tiger Woods trading cards, and especially autograph trading cards, from every type of sports fan. He is an athlete that truly transcends the game.”

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

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