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Monthly Archives: December 2013

Panini becomes presenting sponsor for NFLPA Collegiate Bowl Game

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Panini America is going bowling.

The Irving, Texas-based trading card and memorabilia company will be a presenting sponsor for the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl on Jan. 18 in Carson, Calif., Panini announced on Monday.

The third annual NFLPA showcase features many top draft-eligible prospects from across the country.

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Panini America to offer exclusive packs for Boxing Day in Canada

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

The United States got a Black Friday promotion, and now Panini America is giving Canada an exclusive Boxing Day (Dec. 26) promotion.

The promotion will only be available at Canadian Panini Roundtable stores. The Boxing Day set will include a 40-card set with 20 base, 15 rookies, and five memorabilia rookie cards. There will also be other inserts and hits – all inspired by the Absolute brand.

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Upper Deck includes former Yale hockey star on Heroic Inspirations card in Series 1

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

The latest person to appear on an Upper Deck Heroic Inspiration card is Mandi Schwartz.

Schwartz, a former Yale University hockey player, died in 2011 at the age of the 23. She was diagnosed with cancer her junior year in college in 2008.

Upper Deck has put other inspirational people on cards including 9-year-old Jack Hoffman, who is in cancer remission, and UD officials wanted to include one in Upper Deck Series 1.

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Newest Upper Deck employee cards feature Michael Jordan autograph

By Dan Good | Contributing Writer

Many companies give holiday bonuses, a token of appreciation for hard-working employees.

Those bonuses come in numerous forms – usually a check or gift card, maybe a fleece or sweatshirt.

And then there’s Upper Deck, which this year gave its employees Michael Jordan displays featuring an autographed card and piece of the United Center floor. A few of the displays have already popped up online.

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The King and S.I. — New Jersey collector pursues lifelong autograph project


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“The S.I. King” Scott Smith has a collecting mission — to get the autograph of every person who has appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated. That, of course, includes Swimsuit Issue models Elle Macpherson — and he’s amassed more than 94 percent of cover subjects in the near 60-year history of the weekly magazine.

By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Imagine a collecting challenge that spans decades into the past and has at least one new autograph addition arriving every single week.

That’s the life of Scott Smith, and it’s been that way for years now.

His quest? To get every issue of Sports Illustrated — the weekly magazine that has been around since 1954 — autographed by its cover subject. That’s nearly 60 years’ worth of magazines as S.I. will celebrate its diamond anniversary this August, and it’s a project that started for “The S.I. King” way back in 1982.

“My grandmother gave me a subscription to S.I. in 1973, and I collected and saved every issue and stacked them up in my closet,” said the 49-year-old former investment banker from New Jersey. “Like any kid who saves anything, I saved every issue. Wayne Gretzky‘s Sportsman of the Year was the first signed S.I. I got when he passed through town playing against the Devils. Went to Oilers team hotel in New Jersey.”

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First look: 2013-14 Pinnacle Basketball cards

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Basketball Editor

A popular name is showing up in the NBA for the first time.

Panini America is bringing 2013-14 Pinnacle to NBA cards in mid-January with 10 30-card packs in each hobby box.

Each hobby box will have two autographs and a memorabilia card.

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Box Busters: 2013 Topps Turkey Red Football


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Beckett Football Editor Susan Lulgjuraj opens a box of 2013 Topps Turkey Red, a Topps.com exclusive.

First look: 2014 Leaf Legends of the Link Golf

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Leaf is bringing signed tournament cards to a new golf set.

Each box of 2014 Legends of the Links Golf will contain a cut autograph (single or double) and tournament-used signed scorecards.

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Michael Jordan ‘flu game’ sneakers sell for more than $100K

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Basketball Editor

Someone spent more than $100,000 for a pair of shoes.

The sneakers Michael Jordan wore during his famous “flu game” sold for $104,765 through Grey Flannel Auction Thursday.

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Santa Claus coming to a Strata football box near you

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Ho ho ho!

Topps is bringing Santa Claus to collectors this year.

Santa Claus autograph relic cards have popped up in 2013 Topps Strata Football. No, Santa isn’t one of the many backup quarterbacks this year. The Santa Claus cards are an extra addition to Strata.

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Collecting blues: What to do when your favorite player finds a new team

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

The baseball offseason can make your head swirl as you try to watch all the moves being made. Guys get traded to division rivals while others are signing big contracts to move across the country.

But what happens when one of your favorite players on your favorite team decides to pack his bags?

As a collector, you probably have a decent stash of his cards, including autographs and memorabilia. And that’s where my friend Marie Pecora found herself. She has close to 400 unique Robinson Cano cards with more than 51 autographs in her collection.

The day Cano signed with the Seattle Mariners, I immediately thought of her and what she planned to do with her Cano collection.

Her first response involved some sort of bonfire, but she has since calmed down – kind of.

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MacKinnon, Monahan represent trade cards in Team Canada set

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Hockey Editor

Throughout the past couple of years, collectors have found cards from Team Canada in Upper Deck hockey products.

Team Canada is one of the most successful international teams with many of hockey’s top stars on the roster. Upper Deck created a comprehensive set dedicated to this team alone in 2013 Upper Deck Team Canada Hockey.

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2013 Leaf Ink Football to release next week

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Football Editor

Autograph cards of some of football’s greats will be packed out in a new product next week.

Leaf is releasing 2013 Leaf Ink Football, a limited product.

Each box will contain five buyback autographed football cards with each card authenticated by PSA or JSA.

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Beckett 20 Questions on … collecting autographs

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Few things in the trading card industry these days — except maybe licensing — are as vital as the autograph.

For the next issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, we’ll once again be taking a look at autographs. Among the selections, of course, will be 20 Questions.

We want to know what you think about certain things when it comes to autographs in the hobby as well as know what kind of collections you might be building. (Be sure to tell us more if you need to in the comments below.)

1. Do you consider yourself an autograph collector?

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2. How many autographs do you own?

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See the rest of the questions … after the jump.

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Box Busters: 2013 Garbage Pail Kids Mini cards


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Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor Susan Lulgjuraj opens a box 2013 Garbage Pail Kids Mini cards. Watch the video to see the GPK stickers.

First look: 2014 Bowman Platinum baseball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Bowman is going platinum for the fifth time.

Topps revealed the basics on 2014 Bowman Platinum on Tuesday, with the prospecting line back for the fifth year in a row packing the familiar two autographed prospect Refractors and one autographed Relic per 20-pack hobby box.

It will arrive on July 30.

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Dave & Adam’s & GTS offer U.S. collectors chance to grab Japanese MLB cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Are you ready for the arrival of 2013 Topps Supreme baseball cards?

You might not be able to answer that one unless you live outside of the United States as that is an MLB card release specifically made for Asian markets — a move that began with the arrival of Bowman Sterling late last year. Why? The arrival of a rather popular Japanese star in MLB … you know, Yu Darvish.

While that was a product packaged separately from the rest of the 2012 Bowman Sterling run, this one’s a bit different — buying in Japan is the only way to initially get your hands on these cards. Here’s where Dave & Adam’s Card World and GTS Distribution come in.

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Your Turn: What autograph-hounding tales do you have? + win a Hall of Famer’s autograph


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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

If you’ve ever hounded for autographs, you probably have a favorite story.

We want to hear it.

For the upcoming Autographs Issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, we’re setting aside space to showcase some interesting stories from autograph collectors who do their hunting the old-fashioned way — with a pen in hand — instead of a mouse click.

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Managerial debut cards aren’t as illustrious as legendary careers

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By Stan Carlberg | Collector Commentary

In an era of fabricated power numbers and mind-boggling moonshots, Tony LaRussa, Bobby Cox and Joe Torre made their indelible mark on baseball by calling the shots from the dugout. The trio enjoyed lengthy careers as big-league skippers, so it should come to nobody’s surprise that the game’s third-, fourth- and fifth-winningest managers of all time were elected into the Hall of Fame on Monday.

What’s cool about their elections by the Veterans Committee is they will all enter Cooperstown at the same time. They may be going in as part of the special “Expansion Era” election, but their records are all among the greatest ever.

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VIDEO: Upper Deck talks innovation with NHL.com


Upper Deck has been a staple in the hobby since 1989.

NHL.com went behind the scenes to show some of innovations by UD in hockey cards.