Author Archives: hackler

First Look: 2010 Crown Royale Football

You can count on one hand the number of sports card products that are instantly recognizable from five feet away with just a glimpse of the base card. The rather regal Crown Royale is one of those products — and Panini America is giving the elaborate testament to mid-’90s technological decadence a full-blown football set for the first time since 2002.

ITG President Dr. Brian Price's "Welcome Letter" to Panini

In The Game President Dr. Brian Price had an interesting post on his PrezSez blog Sunday regarding alleged language in Panini America’s NHL player agreement letters that he finds rather objectionable.

Tim Tebow 'Topps' John Elway in New Card Count

John Elway’s first Topps card — a gem of a Rookie Card that’s No. 1 in my heart and No. 63 on your checklist — arrived in 1984. Elway’s 30th Topps card wouldn’t follow until nine years later, in 1993 Topps, after the Hall of Famer had already played in three Super Bowls and earned an NFL MVP Award.

Topps Offers An Exclusive Sneak Peek at 2010 Topps UFC

But one of the highlights for the card-minded enthusiasts among the throngs attending no doubt will be booth #2015. That’s where Topps officials are providing the first opportunity to view — and purchase — 2010 Topps UFC, the company’s hotly anticipated next product available everywhere else Sept. 15.

Topps Offers Bounty for Rare Quad-Signed Rookie Premiere Auto

A limited-edition 2010 Topps Rookie Premiere Autograph card signed by Sam Bradford, Tim Tebow, Dez Bryant and Jimmy Clausen will land one lucky collector a full-size NFL helmet signed by the same four rookie stars in Topps’ latest bounty program revealed to Beckett Media on Thursday evening.

Complete Gallery: 2010 Topps Football Rookie Cards & Variations

Judging by the considerable buzz being created online and in hobby shops today, it’s pretty clear that 2010 Topps Football is starting to make its way across the country. The product trickled out at mass retail earlier this week and most hobby dealers have received their order of Jumbos. The standard hobby configuration product should arrive tomorrow. Clearly, the frenzy is beginning.

Box Busters Gallery: 2009-10 Panini NBA Season Update

We got an early glimpse at 2009-10 Panini NBA Season Update today and it appears that the autograph and memorabilia card odds are better than first reported. Like, two times better.

On the Front Lines: Tim Tebow Mania

Editor’s Note: For almost 20 years, Mike Fruitman has owned and operated Mike’s Stadium Sportscards in the Denver, Colo., suburb of Aurora. During that time, Fruitman admittedly has never seen anything quite like the frenzy that ensued beginning with the late-April day that Tim Tebow became a Denver Bronco. This is his summary.

2010 Topps Football Finally Arrives . . .

The long-awaited and way-later-than-usual arrival of base-brand Topps Football this week is sure to be met with a widespread embrace and robust hobby-shop foot traffic across the country.

Amazing Dunks, Insane Trick Shots at the 2010 Panini NBA Rookie Photo Shoot

If you think all that went on at last week’s 2010 Panini NBA Rookie Photo Shoot was acquiring autographs, conducting interviews and snapping pictures for the express purpose of making 2010-11 NBA trading cards, well, do yourself a favor and devote less than three minutes to this must-see video.

Upper Deck Produces Thierry Henry's First MLS Trading Card

Upper Deck officials have produced the first Major League Soccer trading card of French superstar Thierry Henry and are distributing it free to those collectors who purchase two blaster boxes of 2010 Upper Deck Soccer at the company’s online store.

First Look: 2010 Topps Magic Football

Topps officials on Thursday provided preliminary product information and images on 2010 Topps Magic Football, one of the company’s few throwback-inspired gridiron releases that arrives in late December yielding three autograph cards per box. Magic is bolstered by the Magic Autographs, Magic Dual Autographs and Magic Dual Autographs signature inserts, and each includes a Chrome […]

Gallery: Signature Moves at the 2010 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot

Despite the countless hours of behind-the-scenes legwork that go into preparing for any rookie photo shoot (let alone one that attracts more than 40 players like today’s just-completed 2010 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot), most collectors tend to strip the events down these days to two important questions: Will there be on-card autographs from the event and what do the photographs taken there look like?

Sneak Peek: 2010-11 Limited Basketball Same Day Rookie Signatures (Unsigned)

Panini America officials are taking advantage of the unprecedented access provided by today’s 2010 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot to acquire as many on-card autographs for the 2010-11 NBA card season as possible.

Beckett On Location: The 2010 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot

Beckett correspondent Michael Eisner (no, not that Michael Eisner) is on location today inside the MSG Training Center in Tarrytown, N.Y., covering the 2010 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot and Panini America’s cardmaking exploits there.

Round 5 Readies New-Line Sneak Peek for UFC Fan Expo

Renowned UFC figure-maker Round 5 has a surprise for those MMA fans attending the UFC Fan Expo in conjunction with UFC 118 later this month in Boston: A sneak peek at the company’s Ultimate Collector Series 4 line.

Panini America Inks T-Wolves' Wesley Johnson to Exclusive Deal

Bright and early Monday morning, Panini America officials tipped off what promises to be a busy week by announcing that they have reached an exclusive trading card agreement with No. 4 overall pick Wesley Johnson.

Tim Tebow Justifies Early Collector Interest in Preseason Debut

OK, so Tim Tebow’s unbelievably ballyhooed NFL debut during the second half of Denver’s preseason opener in Cincinnati on Sunday night wasn’t necessarily Phil Simms in Super Bowl XXI.

EA Sports' Madden 11 Hype Includes Limited-Edition Panini Card

Panini America and EA Sports will begin teaming up next week to generate a little football card awareness among some of the most respected and read sports business and videogame writers in the country. To help celebrate the August 10 release of Madden 11, the latest installment of the most popular videogame franchise in the world, Panini created a limited-edition card inspired by the game’s box art and the man on it – Madden 11 cover boy Drew Brees.

First Look: 2010-11 Limited Basketball

Panini America officials on Thursday provided preliminary details and product images for the first high-end hoops product of the 2010-11 season — Limited Basketball.

First Impressions: 2010 Rookies & Stars Football

It’s no secret that the Rookies & Stars Football franchise has long been much more about rookies than it has been about stars, at least as it relates to the insert lineup. Longtime brand loyalists can take solace in knowing that the 2010 version — the 13th annual installment of the brand, by the way — follows the same tried-and-true recipe of its predecessors.

Panini America Tabs Peyton Manning as the Face of its NFL Line

Panini America officials on Wednesday morning made it official: Peyton Manning is the new face of the company’s NFL trading card line.

First Look: 2010 Topps UFC Knockout

Two words for those diehard UFC collectors who’ve been patiently waiting for Topps to introduce the category’s first high-end trading card product: “It’s Time!”

Video At The National: Topps' Panel Discussion

On Thursday evening at the 31st National Sports Collectors Convention in Baltimore, Topps officials (from left to right Clay Luraschi, David Reel, Mark Sapir, John Buscaglia and Michael Mader) sat down with a small group of collectors and media members to discuss the company’s products and more.

Two Days at The National: A Photo Gallery

Following two and a half days immersed in the 31st National Sports Collectors Convention, I bittersweetly boarded a plane in Baltimore Friday afternoon to head back home. Bitter: I had to leave The National! Enough said. Sweet: I was mere hours away from reuniting with my sainted wife and two sons.

Stephen Strasburg Topps Heritage Card Creates National Frenzy

The stampede was nearly heard across the floor of the National Sports Collectors Convention (NSCC) on Thursday afternoon. Collectors, flippers and baseball fans ran to get on line for an exclusive Stephen Strasburg 2010 Topps Heritage card, which can only be found at the NSCC at the Baltimore Convention Center.

New Images Shed Additional Light on 2010 Topps UFC

In April we provided the excited first glimpses of 2010 Topps UFC, the company’s fourth stand-alone UFC trading card product due out later this summer. Back then, we told you that the set would release in late August featuring the industry’s first fight-worn fist tape cards, MMA’s first book cards and dual-signed cards featuring autographs from Dana White and some of the UFC’s all-time greats.

Gallery: Panini America National Convention Box Wars Prizes

That’s where the card manufacturers will be set up, enticing collectors with a stunning array of redemption programs, contests, handouts and promotions. One such contest that has become a staple of the Panini America booth is the company’s popular Box Wars program.

Putting the "National" in National Treasures Basketball

In conjunction with the launch of 2009-10 Playoff National Treasures Basketball and the opening of the 31st National Sports Collectors Convention in Baltimore, Panini America officials today announced plans for a special edition of Box Wars at the company booth on Saturday afternoon.

I'll Tweet You For It

In case you missed it, St. Louis Blues forward David Perron is celebrating the signing of his new deal by giving his Twitter followers a chance to win an autographed stick directly from him.

First Look: 2010 Topps Unrivaled Football

Topps officials on Thursday afternoon released preliminary information and images on 2010 Topps Unrivaled Football, a brand new product due out in mid November delivering two rookie autographs and one patch autograph per box.

Mandatory, Massive Gallery: 2010 Press Pass Showcase Racing

The day that racing collectors have been anxiously anticipating for the better part of a year arrived today with the release of 2010 Press Pass Showcase Racing, the heavily anticipated followup to last year’s history-making debut of the most expensive racing product in trading card history.

Incoming! New Arrivals for 2009-10 National Treasures Basketball

Panini America’s first foray into ultra-high-end basketball card production becomes official one week from today with the release of 2009-10 Playoff National Treasures, a $400-for-eight-cards proposition that guarantees its fair share of thrills among its eight cards per pack.

Famous Fabrics Second Edition Impresses — Without a License

What In The Game patriarch Dr. Brian Price lacks in big-time league licensing, he more than makes up for by continuing to push the creative envelope when it comes to high-end multisport, multi-generational products.

First Look: 2010-11 Score Hockey

Panini America officials on Tuesday released preliminary product information and images for 2010-11 Score Hockey, the company’s highly anticipated fun-and-affordable-for-all-ages product that will release in mid October. The product — initially expected to be Panini’s premiere release under its new hockey license — will follow Certified into the market but will pack a bevy of […]