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Leaf acquires the rights to Sportkings

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

LAS VEGAS – Leaf has acquired the rights to Sportkings.

Leaf CEO Brian Gray told Beckett Media at the 2014 Industry Summit that his company is working on a new release, which is slated to come out around the 2014 National Sports Collector Convention.

“We are getting all new names in the product,” Gray told Beckett Media. “We got (Michael) Phelps, he’s never been in it before. We got Ichiro in there. We’ll also have guys like (Johnny) Manziel and Jadeveon Clowney.”

Gray said the product would feature many newer names under a “Future Sportkings” subset.

Sportkings, which was owned by In The Game’s Dr. Brian Price, was a re-make of a vintage set. The original appeared in 1933 featuring players from a wide range of sports such as baseball’s Ty Cobb and Babe Ruth, football’s Jim Thorpe and boxing’s Jack Dempsey. The set highlighted skiers, cyclists and wrestler, too.

Last year’s offering featured autographed from Bob Griese, Don Shula, Kerri Strug and Tito Ortiz.

Update: Leaf and In The Game officially made the announcement on March 24. Leaf will manufacture a distribute Sportkings.

“In 2008, I had a blank canvas for the revival of this iconic trading card line and I am very proud of what I accomplished,” Price said in a release. “The arrangement with Leaf will allow Sportkings to achieve even more in future releases. The list of Sportkings who I have been associated with is a who’s who of iconic athletes from around the world, encompassing all sports. I am thankful for their participation, but working with Leaf will open new horizons for player content and that’s something I look forward to.”

Susan Lulgjuraj is an editor at Beckett Media. You can email her here with questions, comments or ideas. Follow her on Twitter here. Follow Beckett Media on Facebook and Twitter.

4 Comments

Mike Pereira

Absolutely love buying this stuff. Hopefully Leaf doesn’t overflow the product with rookies and new designs. People love this product for the classic look of it. Feel like I’m getting overloaded with every product being this fifteen different color variations with prism reflector everything. Nothing is more classic than a basic white border with player picture on real cardboard not paper. Miss the brown backs of cards.

Posted March 18, 2014 at 10:26 pm | Permalink
Brian gray /leaf CEO

Trust me.. We will stay true to what makes Sportkings fun to collect and a classic..
But, you can expect to find even more value in the product!
Brian Gray

Posted March 19, 2014 at 1:14 pm | Permalink
Leaf carries benchwarmers

Why is a player who didn’t even take an official snap yet going to a sportsking?

Please don’t add prospects Leaf
that’s not what product is about

Posted March 20, 2014 at 12:50 pm | Permalink
Dan McCoy

Hopefully they don’t get the same kindergarten student to design this stuff that they did to do Big Apple Baseball. What a pukefest of puke that stuff is.

Posted March 24, 2014 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

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