Category Archives: Basketball

Screen-worn Michael Jordan Space Jam jersey up for bid

Michael Jordan Space Jam

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

For most of us, a Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls game-used jersey is out of reach. Even most jersey cards are expensive. But how about a screen-worn Michael Jordan Space Jam jersey?

One has hit the auction block through Profiles in History. The jersey and shorts pair has a starting bid of $10,000.

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Box Busters: 2014-15 Panini Gala basketball cards

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Join Beckett Basketball‘s Brian Fleischer and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2014-15 Panini Gala in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

2015-16 Panini NBA Hoops Basketball First Look


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

A hobby favorite is back again as Panini America has dropped details about 2015-16 NBA Hoops and collectors can get an early look at next season’s hottest rookie talents once it is released to the public on October 14.

With each hobby box loaded up with two autograph cards and at least 20 inserts or parallels, Hoops has long been an affordable entry point for those that are new to the world of basketball cards. Even grizzled veteran collectors can appreciate what this release has to offer as there are seven numbered cards to be found inside each box along with the potential of pulling a signature from a Rookie of the Year contender like Karl-Anthony Towns, Jahlil Okafor, or D’Angelo Russell.

What else can be found in packs of 2015-16 NBA Hoops? Find out after the jump. Read More »

2014-15 Panini National Treasures Basketball Rookie Patch Autographs Gallery

2014-15 NT RPA 101 Andrew Wiggins

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

The high-end basketball market often results in some of the hobby’s most expensive cards. Michael Jordan, LeBron James and older inserts are big parts of that, but not all. For several years, National Treasures has brought some of the most coveted rookie cards of the season. The 2014-15 Panini National Treasures Basketball Rookie Patch Autographs keep up with that tradition.

Also keeping with tradition are some of the prices the top cards are getting.

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Autograph Hound Seeking Stephen Curry Signature Crossed the Line

Curry Tweet

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor | Commentary

There is no doubt that Stephen Curry is a player who experiences a higher-than-normal demand for his time and autograph. Last night, the star talent for the reigning NBA champion Golden State Warriors took to Twitter to offer up some advice to aggressive autograph seekers after he was intensely stalked by someone hoping to get him to sign.

The behavior of this person purporting to be a fan was in no way acceptable. Following an athlete in their vehicle in order to spend a moment with them is seriously crossing a line and is viewed as dangerous no matter what the reason. While Curry did not state if he indeed gave the fan the autograph they were looking for, one would hope that he politely declined the seeker.

For the past 25 years, athletes in all sports have seen a greatly increased demand for their autographs. Some players receive thousands of letters a year from collectors seeking a signature and the in-person autograph hounds often stake themselves outside of hotels and arenas hoping for the chance to get one. Some of these hounds are, in reality, true fans who are simply looking for an autograph from their heroes. Others, however, demand multiple signatures and attempt to mislead athletes and capitalize on their kindness in order to turn a profit. It is a sad by-product of the collectibles industry and many high-profile athletes have been known to simply ignore the crowds as they grow disenchanted by their demands. Read More »

2014-15 Panini Flawless Basketball First Look


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

Panini America revolutionized the game when it comes to high-end trading cards with its first Flawless release back in 2012-13 and it is back once again this season with even more jaw-dropping cards and some new concepts that are bound to get some attention from collectors once it comes to card stores on September 30.

With presentation meaning so much, there is much pomp and circumstance whenever a pack of 2014-15 Panini Flawless  is opened since it comes in the form of a locked briefcase and the cards themselves are nestled perfectly inside. With a lofty retail price that is justified by its limited nature, Panini has provided some early details regarding Flawless and it is truly meant for advanced collectors – or those with deep pockets. Read More »

Michael Jordan was paid how much by Upper Deck?

2007-08 Upper Deck Exquisite Number Pieces Autograph Patch Michael Jordan

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

$14 million — that’s what Upper Deck gave Michael Jordan to be a company spokesman between 2000 and 2012.

Normally these aren’t the kinds of numbers that athletes and companies like being made public. But Jordan and his attorneys released the information as part of a lawsuit brought against Dominick’s, a grocery chain that went under in 2013.

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2015 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot Recap: Panini’s Tracy Hackler


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

Panini America was quite busy over the weekend with both the Pro Football Hall of Fame induction ceremonies and the 2015 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot, but it still managed to deliver plenty of excitement to dedicated collectors through its social media feeds.

At the NBA Rookie Photo Shoot, nearly 40 of the game’s brightest prospects headed to Tarrytown, New York to pose for their first trading card photos and sign for several of the company’s early-season releases for 2015-16. In addition to this, the players also went head-to-head in a Trick Shot Challenge competition and managed to interact with fans who are unable to attend this exclusive event by taking over the company’s Twitter feed and answering collector questions.

Beckett Basketball caught up with Panini’s Marketing Manager, Tracy Hackler, in the days following the the annual spectacular and he was able to reveal some details that will surely be of interest to collectors.

How excited were the players about seeing and signing their first NBA trading cards?

“One of the biggest highlights of this event every year is watching the reactions of the players when they see their cards for the first time. To see those huge, authentic smiles come across the players’ faces – or to watch them carefully scrutinize the card-back copy on every card – is a true sight to behold. And this class in particular is filled with players who grew up collecting cards. Karl-Anthony Towns worked in a card shop when he was younger; Frank Kaminsky still loves busting packs. These players understand and appreciate what this event means for fans and collectors and they seemed to really enjoy being there.”

Read on after the jump for the rest of the interview and images from the 2015 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot.

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First Look: 2014-15 Panini Noir


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

As the parade of high-end basketball releases makes its way to store shelves before the 2015-16 NBA campaign begins, Panini America had just officially announced a late addition to its roster in the form of 2014-15 Panini Noir.

With seven autograph or memorabilia cards in each 12-card box, this collection is not for the light of heart or wallet and releases on September 16. Each signature is on-card and the presence of some seriously tough Noir Rookie Patch Autographs is sure to generate plenty of interest from both collectors and investors alike. Numbered to 99 copies each, Panini has noted that these cards will have two version – one in black & white and the other in color. The company likened these variations to a mysterious classic noir film where there was always two stories to be told.

What else can be found in packs of this debuting product? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Panini prepared for 2015 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

Staff from Panini America expect to busy over the next three days at the 2015 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot as the annual event gives the company an opportunity to get plenty of shots of the Class of 2015 in addition to having them autograph cards that will be inserted into the company’s products during the 2015-16 season.

Karl-Anthony Towns, the first choice in the 2015 NBA Draft, is in attendance, but there is plenty of strong talent anticipated to be at the annual event including Jahlil Okafor, D’Angelo Russell, Kristaps Porzingis, Willie Cauley-Stein, and 34 other pro prospects. The players will also be participating in the Rookie Transition Program, which is mandatory for all players entering the NBA.

This morning, Panini gave collectors a quick look at two unsigned autograph collections, Fresh Ink and Heir Apparent, from 2015-16 Panini Court Kings, which should hit store shelves in a few months. There were also hints of hard-signed rookie content coming for other future releases in 2015-16 Prizm Basketball and 2015-16 Prestige Basketball.

Look for a sneak peek at some of the unsigned cards after the jump. Read More »

Chuck Daly’s gold medal-clinching 1992 USA Dream Team Olympic basketball up for auction

1992 Dream Team Game-Used Olympic Basketball Chuck Daly

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Is there any debate that the 1992 USA Basketball squad, dubbed the Dream Team, was the greatest to ever take the court? Featuring such all-time greats as Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, they made short work of their opponents en route to the Gold Medal at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona.

The basketball from the final game has hit the auction block with SCP Auctions. It’s part of the personal collection of the late Chuck Daly, the team’s coach. His estate has several items in SCP’s Summer Premier Auction.

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Ripping Retail: What’s inside a 1986-87 Fleer basketball pack?

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Beckett Media’s Chris Olds caught up with collector Dylan Whitford to rip a pack of the iconic 1986-87 Fleer basketball set — home of the Michael Jordan Rookie Card.

Will he land one? Watch and find out …

John Smoltz, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar join Panini America VIP party guest list


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

One of the newest Baseball Hall of Famers, a hardcourt legend and two more young NBA stars have been added to the Panini America VIP Party guest list for Saturday night.

Former Atlanta Braves pitcher John Smoltz and Basketball Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar headline the latest batch of signers for the exclusive event. Joining them will be Chicago Bulls rookie Bobby Portis and Milwaukee Bucks star Jabari Parker, who also were announced on Friday.

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Scenes at the show: National Sports Collectors Convention (Friday)



You can find virtually anything at the National Sports Collectors Convention. Look for a gallery of images — just a small selection of scenes from the show — after the jump.

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Ripping Panini America NSCC wrapper redemption packs with Tracy Hackler

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Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Chris Olds joins Panini America‘s Tracy Hackler to rip some wrapper redemption packs from the floor of the National Sports Collectors Convention.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

We’ll give away some of the hits in this break randomly to commenters … so let us know what you think.

Nickels turned into thousands via vintage wax

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A visual tour of just some of the vintage wax boxes and packs at the Baseball Card Exchange booth at the NSCC. So much pocket change turned into thousands of dollars. Check it out …

Box Busters: 2014-15 Panini Excalibur basketball

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Join Beckett Basketball‘s Eric Norton and Chris Olds as they rip into premium boxes of 2014-15 Panini Excalibur in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Memorabilia from historic Jordan game up for auction


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

Heritage Auctions has put a major piece of NBA history up for bidding as the backboard and rim from Michael Jordan‘s final game as a member of the Chicago Bulls can be owned by a lucky collector.

This item is the net upon which one of the most notable shots in basketball history was made. On June 14, 1998, the Bulls were poised to eliminate the Utah Jazz and earn the second three-peat in franchise history and Jordan delivered an incredible 45-point performance. With less than a minute to go and down by three points, Jordan scored on a layup and then stole the ball from Karl Malone soon before sinking his last shot, a 20-foot jumper, and taking an 87-86 lead and, ultimately, the championship. The moment has gone down in sporting history as “The Shot” and the game itself had the highest television ratings for an NBA game.

“This is arguably the most recognizable basket and backboard in the sport,” said Chris Ivy, Director of Sports Auctions at Heritage in a press release. “The story of the greatest basketball player of all time effectively ended here, in the glass and metal of this special artifact. To own this is to secure ultimate bragging rights in the highly-competitive world of Michael Jordan collectibles.”

When does bidding end for this piece of history? Find out after the jump. Read More »

SCP Auctions partners with Basketball Hall of Fame


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

SCP Auctions has been named the new official auction and appraisal partner for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

As part of their multi-year partnership, fans and collectors will be able to experience an annual auction where the Hoop Hall will benefit from the proceeds. In addition to this, SCP has become a key sponsor of festivities for the upcoming Class of 2015 Enshrinement and is a partner for the annual Family Reunion Dinner that is scheduled to take place on September 10. This year, the Hall of Fame will welcome legendary talents that include Dikembe Mutombo, Jo Jo White, and Lisa Leslie.

“SCP Auctions is extremely proud and excited to be the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame’s new auction partner,” said SCP Auctions President David Kohler. “As one of the country’s premier sports memorabilia auction houses, we look forward to creating a great working relationship with the Hall of Fame as well as with many of basketball’s greatest legends.” Read More »

Beckett 20 Questions on … college cardboard


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

School ties are seemingly everywhere on cardboard from the past and present. Now they’re the focus here for our latest 20 Questions …

1. Do you buy or collect college cards?

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2. Did you attend a school commonly found on cards?

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3. Which do you prefer best?

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First Look: 2014-15 Panini Excalibur


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

Panini America has tried something new with some of its NBA releases this season and partnered up with Target to ensure that three of them were going to be exclusive to the retail giant. With Prestige and Threads getting new life brought into them in recent months by becoming retail exclusive, the company has announced that 2014-15 Panini Excalibur is on the way and it will be showing up on store shelves as early as next week.

New to the basketball market, there are only scant details available regarding Excalibur at this time, but Panini has noted that it will be available in three different formats. The most expensive is the Premium box which is set to contain three autograph or memorabilia hits along with at least three always-popular Crusade cards. For those that want to dabble first but at least pull something decent, blaster boxes will retail at $34.99. Finally, gravity feed packs provide a realistic shot at a good pull (two autograph or memorabilia cards per box)  without having to put much money down at the cash register.

What else is expected in packs of 2014-15 Panini Excalibur? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Box Busters: 2014-15 Panini Preferred + win our book

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Join Beckett Basketball‘s Chris Olds and Eric Norton as they rip into boxes of 2014-15 Panini Preferred in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out.

How can you win the big card in the break? Find out after the jump …

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Panini gives a virtual look at NBA draftees

01 Towns B

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

The 2015 NBA Draft saw 60 up-and-coming players chosen by the league’s clubs and in a matter of months, several of them will be making an impact with basketball card collectors in next season’s trading card releases from Panini America which start hitting store shelves in October with 2015-16 NBA Hoops.

Earlier that day, Panini had announced that they had signed contracts with approximately 50 players that were eligible for the draft. During the event, however, the hobby received a sneak peek at that product’s design as the company’s design team was busy creating cards and communications staff went into overdrive on their social media feeds to show off the first virtual trading cards of many picks. Starting with first overall selection Karl-Anthony Towns of the Minnesota Timberwolves, the company created cards for nine of the top 10 picks and added several more throughout the night.

Look at the “first” Panini trading cards of next season’s hot rookies after the jump. Read More »

Panini Signs Five Top NBA Draft Prospects

Panini America 2015 NBA Draft Karl-Anthony Towns

By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

The 2015 NBA Draft will take place tonight, but Panini America has already been busy inking exclusive trading card deals with five prospects that are projects to be selected in the first round.

Jahlil Okafor, Karl-Anthony Towns, Emmanuel Mudiay, D’Angelo Russell, and Jerian Grant will be a big part of the company’s plans for next season as they will be a part of products in their collegiate and NBA lineups. The Minnesota Timberwolves have the first pick and many believe that they will choose Towns.

“The NBA Draft is always a key time for us at Panini America because it signifies the official start to a new season – and the grand introduction of the NBA’s next wave of superstars,” said Panini’s CEO, Mark Warsop. “Many of the players selected Thursday night – including the five newest exclusive members of the Panini America family – will be driving forces for our licensed trading card products for years to come; and that’s just as exciting for fans and collectors as it is for us.”

How many other NBA prospects has Panini signed? Find out after the jump. Read More »

First Look: 2014-15 Panini Gala


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

Basketball is truly a global game and collectors outside of North America are often a serious and dedicated group. In recognition of the NBA’s presence on the international scene, Panini America has developed a high-end product which will be heading exclusively to those markets this summer and it may make some waves on a global scale.

As the current season drew to a close, the company gave the hobby a small preview of 2014-15 Panini Gala through its official blog. Loaded up with three autographs, a limited base card and a memorabilia card in each box, collectors will also be compelled by the fact that every card in this product is limited to 99 copies or less.

What else can be found in 2014-15 Panini Gala? Find out after the jump. Read More »

The Warriors are Golden once again


By Derek Ficken | Beckett Basketball Analyst | Commentary

First off, as a Bay Area native, I want to congratulate the Golden State Warriors players, front office, and especially the fans.

What an amazing 2014-15 NBA season that was capped off with “dethroning” the King, LeBron James. With this recent NBA championship, many collectors should start buying into their stock. This team is compiled of many role players and it was the reason opponents had such a hard time figuring out their game plan.

With veterans like David Lee and Andre Iguodala, as well as young leaders in Stephen Curry and Draymond Green, this team is stacked for a long-run of potential success. Will the recent success of Iguodala translate into big values on cardboard? Has Curry exceeded his value this season? Read More »

Considering autograph signings at the National? Here’s a rundown of who is appearing …


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

The National Sports Collectors Convention is set for Chicago beginning on July 29 with more than 100 signers from the four major sports and beyond.

One highlight this year will be the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team reunion, while notables such as Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders, Allen Iverson and Greg Maddux also will be signing.

Here’s a rundown of this year’s schedule with beginning prices for each signer. (Click here for more info.)  Note: All times p.m. except where noted by *. Tickets for autographs from all members of the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team in attendance start at $399.


Name Time Signing Fee
Rollie Fingers 4:30 Free
Pierre Pilote 4:30 Free
Bret Saberhagen 4:30 Free
Lem Barney 5:30 $39 and up
Ed Belfour 5:30 $60 and up
Tom Gordon 5:30 $39
Tony Esposito 5:45 $50 and up
Eric Hinske 5:45 $29 and up
Bobby Hull 6 $50 and up
Paul Konerko 6:15 $80
Fergie Jenkins 6:30 $40 and up
Chris Chelios 6:45 $50 and up
Jeremy Roenick 7 $60 and up

Olds’ Bargain Pick: It’s hard to beat free, so I’d go with Hall of Famer Rollie Fingers. His penmanship is as slick as his famous mustache.
The High-end Pick: There are a few hockey legends here but I’d go with Hall of Famer Chris Chelios.

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Shaq signs new deal with Upper Deck


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

One of the best-loved players in NBA history, Shaquille O’Neal gathered a legion of fans throughout his 19 NBA seasons and Upper Deck has signed a new autographed memorabilia deal which sees the creation of several premium pieces from Upper Deck Authenticated.

“Shaquille O’Neal’s charisma and fun-loving personality make him just as popular today as when he played for the NBA,” said Upper Deck’s President, Jason Masherah. “We’ve received many requests for his memorabilia over the years, and we are excited to bring fans this innovative new collection of premium Shaq collectibles.”

The Upper Deck Authenticated Shaq collection is set to include a variety of limited edition pieces that is highlighted by “The Show” – an image measuring 46″ x 20″ that includes the largest O’Neal signature ever produced. There will also be a “Tegata” piece featuring the big man’s handprint and the intriguing “Breaking Through” which depicts its subject ready to make a slam dunk and has a basketball coming through the Plexiglass.

How many cards of O’Neal are in the database? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Box Busters: 2014-15 Panini Spectra basketball

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Join Beckett Basketball‘s Derek Ficken and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2014-15 Panini Spectra in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …


First Look: 2014-15 Panini Luxe


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

Even though the current NBA season is in its final days, Panini America will still be busy in the coming weeks and months finishing out their production schedule with several high-end releases. This year, they have added an all-new product to the mix and 2014-15 Panini Luxe promises to be an exciting new part of their lineup that is expected to deliver plenty of autographs and colorful memorabilia pieces.

Arriving on store shelves in mid-July, Luxe will contain four premium cards per pack and three of them are hard-signed autographs. The other item inside is a jumbo prime memorabilia card and some of them will be die-cut. On top of that, every card is sequentially numbered to 99 copies or less.

What is expected in packs of 2014-15 Panini Luxe? Find out more and view an extensive gallery after the jump. Read More »

Topps adds NBA hopefuls to Allen & Ginter


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

This year’s Allen & Ginter set from Topps will be the home of autographs from legendary fictional fighters named Rocky Balboa and Thunderlips as well as future baseball Hall of Famer Ichiro Suzuki.

It will also include four potential NBA stars.

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Panini prepares NBA Finals promotion


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

While basketball fans around the world prepare to watch the opening game of the 2015 NBA Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors, collectors will be able to enjoy a special bonus courtesy of Panini America in the form of special promotional packs that will contain some seriously limited autographed cards.

Those that make a qualifying purchase on will receive a one-card pack for every $100 spent on the site and every card inside is numbered to 25 copies or less. Some of them will be one-of-one HyperPlaid parallels which could prove to be very popular on the secondary market. The roster of signers includes a strong mix of current stars, hot rookies and revered legends and they will only be available while supplies last.

What will you need to break to receive one of these packs? Look for an extensive gallery and find out more after the jump. Read More »

NBA Finals bring out superstar prices

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By Derek Ficken | Basketball Market Analyst | Commentary

The NBA Finals are quickly approaching, and the basketball market has been ramping up for a classic match-up between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers. 

Many story lines are swirling around including this being the first Finals appearance since 1975 for the Warriors, as well as LeBron James coming home and potentially leading the Cavs to their first NBA championship in franchise history.

Read More »

Panini Father’s Day promo returns


By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

Now in its fourth straight year, Panini America‘s Father’s Day promotion has been a solid success for retailers and the company has released early details regarding what will be coming out of these popular packs once they start to hit local card stores next week.

Drawing from three different sports, many of today’s biggest stars and prospects will be present and accounted for as part of a 60-card set along with plenty of limited memorabilia cards. Traditionally handed out as a bonus to collectors purchasing Panini products, they also can act as a way for fathers to bond with their children over a pack of cards.

What are some of the cards included in 2015 Panini Father’s Day packs? Look for more information and a base set gallery after the jump. Read More »

Gallery: 2014-15 Panini Spectra


 By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Basketball Editor

Basketball card collectors had better put on some shades as 2014-15 Panini Spectra is about to hit store shelves and the cards inside each box are going to dazzle thanks to the etched opti-chrome technology that Panini America used to make them.

Each box will contain eight cards and seven of them will feature autographs, memorabilia or a mixture of both. Earlier today, the company gave a sneak peek of some of the cardboard treasures headed into packs and their sample break showed a strong mix of players from the past and present along with a blast of color.

Look for an extensive gallery after the jump. Read More »