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Category Archives: Boxing

Beckett 20 Questions on … Cleveland and the National Sports Collectors Convention


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Cleveland will become the center of the collecting universe for five days beginning on July 30 as the 35th edition of the National Sports Collectors Convention takes place with all of the major manufacturers, dealers and thousands of collectors under one roof.

We’re curious about what you know about Cleveland, so here are the latest 20 questions all with an NSCC or Cleveland-centric twist.

1. Which of these cities is the host of next year's NSCC?

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2. Who is the priciest signer (starting fee) at this year's NSCC?

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See the rest of our questions … after the jump.


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Your Turn: Which athletes and cards with military ties are most memorable to you?


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

When Fleer produced an 80-card set documenting the career and the life of Boston Red Sox star Ted Williams back in 1959, it included something that wasn’t all that common for sports cards at the time but is something that we’ve seen a little bit more of in recent years.

It included a selection of cards showcasing the Hall of Famer’s time in the military.

For those who don’t know, Williams missed parts of five baseball seasons — three from 1943-1945 in the Navy reserves for World War II where he learned to be a pilot and then part of the 1952 and 1953 seasons. In his second stint, he was a fighter pilot serving in the Marine Corps in the Korean War where he flew 39 combat missions.

Williams is far from alone as many stars from that era missed time serving in the military.

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Beckett Auctions begins next month

Beckett Auctions kicks off next month with an impressive first round of items.

Highlights include UFC memorabilia, autographs from Michael Jordan and Peyton Manning, and a number of high-end sports cards including a Mike Trout autograph memorabilia card and a Damian Lillard autograph.

The auction will run April 13-April 27.

Beckett’s jump into the auction world will start with dozens of lots that include a wide variety of sports and historical items.

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New Upper Deck Master Collection set puts together 30 great athletes

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Upper Deck’s Diamond Dealer meeting revealed more about the company’s upcoming products.

Upper Deck’s Grant Sandground, director of product development, discussed the 2014-15 hockey season, upcoming basketball and a massive Master Collection set coming while at the 2014 Industry Summit.

The All-Time Great Master Collection will feature 30 great athletes. Each box will come with one autograph from all 30 athletes, a Michael Jordan multi-diamond card, hand-painted cards, metal patch cards and a dual signed card.

Another bonus item could be an autographed buyback, a championship ring, full game-worn jersey or equipment, historical sports relics or even a Michael Jordan Motorsports motorcycle (this would be a redemption).

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Card Chat: Collectors talk about checklists and buying habits

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Checklists can be a hot topic. Some collectors clamor for them, others are more nonchalant about the whole thing.

But one thing they have all noticed is how checklists don’t seem to come out until at least release day. It’s rare that a final checklist is released early, but a lot of that has to do with getting autographs back from athletes and finalizing paperwork and information from printers.

Collectors had a discussion about checklists on Twitter on Thursday night. See their reactions and what group late checklists seems to affect most.

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Can we get final checklists sooner? Manufacturers say ‘no’

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

LAS VEGAS – When it comes to checklists, one question always comes up – why can’t we get them sooner?

This was one of the hot topics during a manufacturer panel that featured representative from Topps, Upper Deck and Panini America at the 2014 Industry Summit in Las Vegas.

Collectors and dealers may not like the answer. It seems the earliest companies can get a final checklist is the day of pack out because the biggest hurdle is the autographs.

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Are you a SuperCollector? We want to see your collection in Beckett Sports Card Monthly



By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

We haven’t been seeing enough of collectors’ passions in the pages of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, so here’s another call for SuperCollectors.

We run them nearly every month in the magazine, setting aside space for your stories, your photos and your information. Later in the year, we’re likely to do our annual showcase issue where we highlight 15 to 20 collectors for the world to see.

Perhaps it’s because of your massive collection of Barry Larkin cards — or perhaps it’s for your stash of hundreds of through-the-mail autographs. Whatever it is that you collect, we want to hear about it, whether it’s baseball, football, basketball or hockey — or any other sport … or non-sports … or whatever you can imagine.

What are the steps for entry? Click the link below.


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.

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Initial autograph guests announced for 2014 National Sports Collectors Convention

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Tickets are on sale for this year’s National Sports Collectors Convention.

The National will be held July 30-Aug. 3 at the International Exposition Center in Cleveland. Tickets start at $18 (for a single day) and range all the way to $279 for the SuperVIP package, which includes entry to all five days, free parking, first-in-live privileges for autograph guests, early admission and more.

The National has already announced some autograph guests for this year’s show, and the list is bound to get longer.

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Your Turn: What concerns you the most about collecting vintage cards?


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

When it comes to collecting vintage cards, it’s no secret that it’s a different animal despite the simplicity of yesteryear’s cardboard.

Counterfeits, trimmed cards, awful printing and cutting jobs are among the obstacles when it comes to finding your key card — if you can find it at all. Then, of course, there are other debates — do you buy graded, do you buy high-grade cards or durable beaten-down copies that you can afford?

Of course, that’s presuming you can find the cards at all.

For the next issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, we’ll be looking at notable names as well as fun and interesting cards all of the vintage variety (by Beckett definition, that’s 1980 and before). As part of that issue, we’d like to know your thoughts on collecting vintage and we’ll share a sampling of your thoughts left here in the magazine.

So, all that said …

What concerns you the most about collecting vintage cards?

What do you like about vintage cards?

What makes vintage cards an attractive collecting niche in your mind?

Tell us what you think on those three points — and tell us whatever else is on your mind when it comes to these cards in the comments below.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball and Beckett Sports Card Monthly magazines. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

Your Turn: What’s your favorite “other” card?


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

We all have our favorite players an our favorite cards from the stuff that seemingly everybody collects — or at least stuff everyone is familiar with — from the Big Four sports.

For the upcoming “Others Issue” of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, though, we want to hear about your cherished cards from the sports that aren’t baseball, football, basketball or hockey — or at least not the typical stuff from those sports.

Better yet, we want you to show us your favorites — as long as they aren’t the norm — show us and tell us about your favorite card or set in the comments below.

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Beckett 20 Questions on … the “other” sports and other collecting options


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor | Commentary

Majority rules.

That might be the best way to describe the sports card landscape and collecting habits these days. The sports that the most people like get the most attention and the most products — and that means that more people probably will own the key cards compared to some of the “other” sports that aren’t the Big Four of baseball, football, basketball or hockey.

And that might be the key to future potential — the oddball stuff of today could be much tougher to find tomorrow if there’s somehow more interest to be seen in sports that aren’t king on cardboard right now. While many a prospector is ripping case after case of the chromed-out stuff, there are far fewer likely buying soccer, wrestling and Olympic brands. There have to be far fewer autographs of some of the “other” sports’ biggest names — you know, the sports that don’t have 20-some products released each year. It’s a compelling thought as tastes always seem to change — just like the stars in the sports world.

In the next issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly, we’ll take a look at some of those other sports. As part of “The Others Issue” we’ll showcase your thoughts on this — and more. Have something to say? Leave it in the comments below — only after you respond to our latest 20 Questions.

1. Have you bought sports cards that are not from baseball, football, basketball or hockey?

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2. Have you bought cards that were made outside the U.S. or made for release elsewhere?

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See the rest of the questions … after the jump.

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


“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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Holiday Gift Guide for sports collectors

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Buying gifts for a sports card or memorabilia collector can be tough if you’re not one yourself. They say things like top loaders and penny sleeves, and you have no idea what they’re talking about.

Let’s make things a little easier with Beckett’s 2013 Holiday Gift Guide for collectors.

1. Pay Pal Gift Card

It’s one of the simplest presents you can get a card collector. Many of them probably shop on eBay for singles or even hobby boxes. A PayPal gift card will allow them to pick up anything they want.

2. A hobby box

Don’t be afraid to ask the collector in your family what their favorite sport is – then head over to a hobby shop and pick up a hobby box of their sport. Many of these will be in the $100 range. Most hobby shops clerks are willing to help you pick the right box, but the important information is usually listed on the sides of the boxes. It will tell you how many packs, autographs and what collectors can expect to find inside.

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Family’s love of collectibles turns into a family business

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Chuck Whisman’s home was filled with trading cards and memorabilia. Even his young daughters would comment on how their dining room table was completely hidden by the goods.

But everything has been moved into Whisman’s new card shop in Lancaster, Pa. – VSM Sports Card Outlet, which opened in August.

“The thought of just doing the shop is a little scary these days,” Whisman said. “You don’t see shops alone anymore.”

That’s why Whisman has turned his love of collectibles into a family business with him running the shop, his wife as an auctioneer for their other new company Wheatland Auctions and his young daughters offering up their brand of advice along the way.

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Beckett 20 Questions on … Collecting USA


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

The Winter Olympics are less than 100 days away and those waiting for the arrival of the only fully licensed Olympic trading cards have an even shorter wait.

And that means the latest batch of athletes aspiring to become medal winners and household names will have their first autographs and trading cards — cards that may resonate well with non-collectors and generate cash for some savvy wheelers and dealers once things heat up this February in Sochi, Russia.

Topps2014 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Team & Hopefuls arrives on Nov. 20 including some of the big names you likely know from past years and others you might not such as Amy Purdy, a member of the US Paralympic Snowboarding Team. Purdy, above and seen holding her upcoming Topps card, lost both of her legs below the knee at age 19. (Check out her story here.)

With all of the collecting potential to be found with the latest arrival sporting the Red, White and Blue, we figured the next Beckett Sports Card Monthly would be a good chance to examine a bit more about Collecting USA — the hot spots, the interesting cards and more from Olympic-focused sets and other releases that are of note or touch on the stars from all 50 states. As part of that, here’s the latest 20 Questions with a focus on Olympic cards of all types.

1. Which sports have you bought Team USA cards for? (select all that apply)

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2. Which past or present Winter Olympians' autos from the new Topps set interest you the most? (Pick your top five)

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See the rest of this month’s questions … after the jump.

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Art and autographs combined in 2013 Leaf Masterworks

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Leaf has added art cards and autographs in several products over the last year.

Now, it has put it all together for one set – 2013 Leaf Masterworks.

Leaf Masterworks contains three art cards with an autograph of the featured athlete. Since these are all custom created, every card is considered 1-of-1.

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It’s the last day of Customer Appreciation Month; don’t forget to enter our daily contest

Every day this month we will give away a prize. To enter, click on this link, hit “Enter the Contest” and you’re done. You  must be a member of Beckett.com to enter, so create an account if you do not have one yet.

Today’s prize: 2011 Leaf Muhammad Ali Fans of Ali Autographs Bronze #FAU3 Magic Johnson

Prizes throughout the month included hobby boxes, rare cards, OPG subscriptions, BGS gift certificate and more.

To view the list of winner’s and daily prizes, check out this thread in the Beckett forums. Don’t forget to enter everyday for a chance to win.

Upper Deck creates rare Precious Metal Gems for employees

By Susan Lulgjuraj | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Several collectors noticed interesting cards showing up on eBay – purple Precious Metal Gems.

Turns out these cards were made for Upper Deck employees, according to the company’s blog. These cards were given away to show appreciation to the employees.

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Box Busters: 2013 Heroes of Sport All-Sport Edition Chapter 1 + win our Wayne Gretzky autograph!

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Brian Fleischer and Chris Olds as they rip into a case of 2013 Heroes of Sport All-Sport Edition Chapter 1 in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? What is the very first item found that can be yours? Watch and find out …

Editor’s Note: There are no points this time — what we thought were points were the scratch-off codes on the redemptions! (Camera light goes on, Olds’ brain shuts off.)