Leaf Announces Spring Expo Redemption Plans

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

Attendees of the 49th Sportcard & Memorabilia Expo in Toronto are already buzzing about junior hockey phenom Connor McDavid and Leaf Trading Cards has made him and some of his peers the focal point of their highly-anticipated redemption program, which will be held from May 1 to May 3.

With the release of 2014-15 Leaf In The Game Heroes and Prospects coming just in time for the opening day of the show, those in attendance can bust their boxes of this hits-only release and will receive a special emerald parallel card that is numbered to 10 copies or less.

What else can collectors expect to see from Leaf at the Expo? Find out more and check out the gallery after the jump. Read More »

Beckett Non-Sport Profile: Vision

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst

The list is powerful. Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Hulk, Wolverine, and Spider-Man.

All of these Marvel heroes at one time have belonged to the superhero fraternity known as The Avengers. However, there are many other heroes in this club who sometimes get overlooked. One of those heroes is Vision.

So, why is Vision significant to the Marvel Universe? For starters he is a key character in the Age of Ultron story line. Last week, Marvel finally revealed the first image of Vision for the upcoming Avengers sequel (above). And, if you’re not an avid comic book reader or fan boy, you probably had no idea this character even existed. Well, here is the low down on Vision, including some key collectibles and cards that collectors might want to keep an eye on…

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First Look: 2015 Leaf Rookie Retro

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

Returning after a one-year hiatus, Leaf Rookie Retro is poised to hit store shelves in the coming days and the company has managed to combine some of today’s hottest young stars with many of the best rookie cards the hobby has ever seen inside of each pack.

Since Leaf Trading Cards has become known for delivering early cards of up-and-coming talent, they managed to dig back into their recent releases and the first half of each pack will have a Rookie Retro Proof card that is hand-numbered to five copies or less. Instead of a signature on these cards, there will be a gold foil stamp instead noting that it is a proof version and hobbyists can look for names like Kris Bryant, Johnny Manziel, Odell Beckham, Jr. and Connor McDavid.

What else will collectors find in packs of 2015 Leaf Rookie Retro? Look for a gallery and find out more after the jump. Read More »

First Look: 2015 Score football cards

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By David Lee | Beckett Media

The first NFL-licensed Panini America product of 2015 will be Score arriving on June 17.

The key to the set will be like years past, including a lower price point with a ton of base cards. Each box will have 24 packs at 12 cards per pack. Boxes will deliver one autograph or memorabilia card on average.

This year’s base set includes more than 400 cards with 100 rookies. Rookies fall up to three per pack. Once again the product will have several parallels indicated by a different color border. These are Showcase, Gold Zone, Artist’s Proof, Red Zone, First Down, End Zone and Gem Masters, numbered to 99 down to one.

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Kentucky Derby races onto magazine shelves

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With the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby set for May 2 at Churchill Downs, Beckett Sports has released a definitive magazine for Kentucky Derby followers titled, simply, The Kentucky Derby. The cover of the publication features jockey Victor Espinoza atop 2014 Derby winner California Chrome.

Espinoza is scheduled to be the jockey on 2015 Kentucky Derby favorite American Pharoah, having ridden the 3-year-old to a lopsided win in Saturday’s Arkansas Derby — the final tune-up before the Kentucky Derby, which remains the first leg of the Triple Crown series.

No horse has won the Triple Crown — the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes and the Belmont Stakes in a period of six weeks — since Affirmed did so in the spring of 1978.

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Box Busters: 2014-15 SP Authentic basketball cards

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

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Box Busters: 2015 Upper Deck Marvel 3D

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Matt Bible and Chris Olds as they rip into a box of 2015 Upper Deck Marvel 3D in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Contest: How can you win a box? Tell us what you think about this brand in the comments below. A winner will be selected from all entries received before May 15.

Box Busters: 2015 Panini Dragon Ball Z Heroes & Villains

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Matt Bible and Chris Olds as they rip into a box of 2015 Panini Dragon Ball Z Heroes & Villains in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? How can you win two boxes? Watch and find out …

Contest note: A winner will be selected from all entries received before May 15.

First Look: 2015 Topps WWE Road To WrestleMania

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

The Road to WrestleMania next year in Dallas begins now.

Topps revealed the first looks at 2015 Topps WWE Road to WrestleMania on Monday, a step-by-step recap of the year that was and sets the stage for WWE‘s biggest event of the year. While this year’s WrestleMania took place last month, next year’s will be in JerryWorld — aka the home of the Dallas Cowboys — next spring. The card set will be among the earlier milestones as it’s set to arrive on Aug. 12 packing two hits per hobby box.

Among the firsts in this one will be the first Relics of NXT performers — stars and Divas who might be on the card next year in Dallas — while Turnbuckle Relics and Jerry Lawler sketch cards are new to the brand.

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Honus Wagner pushes $1 million mark in Robert Edward Auction

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

It’s the hobby’s biggest card and it’s in one of the year’s biggest auctions.

Naturally, the bidding is already a big deal, too.

It’s a PSA 3 copy of the 1909 T206 Honus Wagner and it’s part of the annual Robert Edward Auctions sale that’s active now and runs until April 25. It sits at $950,000 — excluding a 20-percent buyer’s premium that will put the card over the $1 million mark.

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Russell Westbrook scores 54, picks up 16th technical

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By Denis Dougherty | Beckett Basketball Editor

Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook scored a career-high 54 points but it wasn’t enough as Indiana rallied late for a 116-104 victory Sunday night in Indianapolis.

Westbrook also picked up his 16th technical foul of the season. NBA rules require a player to sit out one game at that point, but the league could rescind the foul today.

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LeBron James Leads NBA All-Star Jersey Auction

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

In the wake of the 2015 NBA All-Star Weekend, fans were able to bid on game-worn and event-worn jerseys from the biggest names in the sport and some of the prices for them soared to impressive heights.

With eight different items reaching final bids of over $10,000 over the past few weeks, collectors and fans were willing to place high bids for a piece of history and the most expensive turned out to be the white Eastern Conference jersey worn by Cleveland’s LeBron James during the first half of the 2015 NBA All-Star Game hit $35,620 after 27 bids. Even King James’ warm-up jacket was a hot commodity as it garnered a bid of $10,095 before the gavel dropped and his shorts went for $6,125. Read More »

Contest: Mariota vs. Winston

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By: Justin Grunert Football Market Analyst

Peyton Manning and Ryan Leaf. Andrew Luck and RGIII. Teddy Bridgewater and Johnny ManzielAll of these pairs of quarterbacks have something in common: one is a hobby stud and the other is a hobby bust. With this year’s NFL Draft only a few weeks away we are faced with another pair of quarterbacks that are being highly touted.

Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota are the talk of the Draft. So who will be the bigger bust and the bigger star next season? Post your answer in the comments below for your chance to win 10 packs (half box) of 2015 Upper Deck Football. One winner will be selected from Team Winston and the other from Team Mariota. Let the debate begin.

The Relic contained in this Chris Davis Museum Collection card is from a specific game and season

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

This year’s edition of Topps Museum Collection arrived in hobby shops today with every pack containing some type of hit — an autographed card or a Relic of an MLB player.

This particular card was pulled by a collector, and it includes a nameplate from a black game-used bat from Baltimore Orioles slugger Chris Davis embedded into it — but that’s not why it carries extra appeal to me.

It’s a nameplate of a black Louisville Slugger M356 model that Davis splintered at the handle when facing Jon Lester during the bottom of the fourth inning on March 31, 2014, in Oriole Park at Camden Yards. How do I know this? The MLB Authentication sticker tells me just that.

The game’s box score tells me Davis went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts on that sunny, 60-degree Monday — a game that, despite the slugger’s tough day, was a 2-1 Orioles victory.

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Contest: DBZ Heroes and Villains

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst

It’s contest time once again, and we are celebrating the release of 2015 Dragon Ball Z Heroes and Villains.

But, we’re not just giving away one box of DBZ. We’re in such a great mood that we’re not only going to give away a box of Heroes and Villains, but also a box of 2014 DBZ. That’s right, two boxes.

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Your Turn: Which 2014-15 NHL Rookie Will Win the Calder Trophy

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By Eric Norton | Beckett Hockey Analyst

As the 2014-15 regular season NHL campaign draws to an end, and the playoffs lie in wait, Calder Trophy contenders are making their final bids for the hardware. Past winners of the award read like a who’s who of the NHL. Names like Bobby Orr, Ken Drayden, Ray Bourque, Mario Lemieux, Peter Forsberg, Alexander Ovechkin, and Patrick Kane just to name a few. The contenders this season are first rounders, mid-rounders, and late bloomers, but they all have a case to be made for winning.

Johnny Gaudreau, LW, Calgary Flames – 2011 NHL Entry Draft (104th overall)
Through 80 games Gaudreau has 24 goals and 40 assist (24-40-64) which leads all rookies in scoring. The left winger from Calgary has absolutely set the NHL on fire (no pun intended) and may be the odds on favorite to win.

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Eight-time Pro Bowl safety Troy Polamalu retires

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By Denis Dougherty | Beckett Media

He was one of the game’s great defensive playmakers, a clutch performer and leader on one of football’s most successful teams.

But eight-time Pro Bowl safety Troy Polamalu has made his last big play in the NFL. The Uniontown (Pa.) Herald-Standard reported Thursday night that he will retire after 12 seasons.

Collectors have been actively pursuing Polamalu’s cards for well over a decade and his rookie issues first appeared during the 2003 season. At present, he has 2,093 cards in the Beckett.com database and they have a combined book value of $22,058.69, excluding rarities.  Read More »

Box Busters: 2015 USA Baseball Stars & Stripes

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into boxes of 2015 USA Baseball Stars & Stripes from Panini America in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Basketball Hero Lauren Hill Passes Away

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

The sporting world lost one of its most inspirational athletes this morning as Lauren Hill passed away at the age of 19. Back in November, she made headlines for stepping into an NCAA basketball game for the first time for Mount St. Joseph’s as she bravely battled an inoperable brain tumor.

Ultimately, she appeared in four games and recorded 10 points before health concerns forced her to step away from action.Last month, Upper Deck announced a special Heroic Inspirations card to celebrate her bravery and dedication and proceeds from the sales of the regular and autographed cards went to support The Cure Starts Now. Read More »

Win our box of 2014 National Treasures baseball

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

We got our hands on some serious wax for a contest as part of our Panini America Spring Training Road Trip coverage in the June issue of Beckett Baseball.

If you pick up an issue, you’ll find a form to fill out and mail in for a shot at a box of 2014 National Treasures, which was the Beckett Baseball Product of the Year award-winner.

While all entries there must be postmarked by June 1, we’re giving our online readers the option of winning, too.

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Will Ferrell MLB auctions enter final hours

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

When comedian Will Ferrell played for 10 MLB teams in a single day last month to raise money for cancer-fighting charities, many laughed at his historic antics in meaningless games.

Nobody is laughing at the results on the auction block so far.

More than 70 auction lots of game-used jerseys, pants, bats, shirts, socks, baseballs, lineup cards, catcher’s gear and plenty more are presently up for sale via MLB Auctions — and the sales are entering their final day with several items already topping the $1,000 mark.

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Rookie Jordan shoes among SCP auction highlights

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

It is hard to imagine one of basketball’s greatest legends wearing anything on his feet other than his iconic namesake Air Jordan shoes, but early in his rookie season, Michael Jordan wore a different type of sneaker and a game-worn pair is hitting the auction block via SCP Auctions.

Originally obtained from Jordan by a former Los Angeles Lakers ball boy following Chicago’s narrow 113-112 road victory on December 2, 1984, these Nike Air Ship shoes were signed after the game and safely stored for 30 years. With bidding already over $7,000 and expected to go higher, a collector is going to need deep pockets to acquire them.

What other game-used sports treasures are up for bids? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Topps releases 1952 Tribute jumbo team sets

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The famed 1952 Topps set is back — in jumbo team set form — via the latest online offering from Topps.

The 2015 Topps 1952 Tribute team sets were unveiled by the company on Thursday, and they’re the latest in oversized cards and wall art offered only on the company’s website.

This time, the standard team sets are limited to only 99 copies and are available for 18 teams. A Legend version is limited to only 49 copies and includes a card of a past star for 18 MLB teams.

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Box Busters: 2015 Donruss baseball cards

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Join Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds and Brian Fleischer as they rip into 2015 Donruss in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Topps Bunt launches for another virtual season

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

A new season is here on the field and it’s here on virtual cardboard, too.

While this year’s baseball cards on paper arrived a few months ago, this year’s edition of Topps Bunt arrived late last week with a new card design, new inserts and new challenges for the online virtual card app.

Fully licensed by MLB and the MLBPA, Bunt is available for the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Android devices. It allows collectors to get free packs daily without purchase or buy tokens to buy packs. Tokens are also awarded based on performance of active players on the field in one’s collection.

“Topps is continuing to deliver on the mission of revolutionizing how fans collect and interact with their favorite sports and athletes,” said Chris R. Vaccaro, Director of App Production at Topps. “We’re excited to bring fans an even more interactive experience in 2015.”

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What’s on your want list? Tell us right here …

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

I’ve had a collecting void for nearly seven years now, and I was reminded of it this past weekend when I dug out one of my many Nick Swisher boxes to snap a few photos and make a feeble attempt at organizing my collection.

It’s not something I have lost any sleep over, but it’s a challenge that I’d like to finish. It’s been on hold since I found two of the four cards I need within the same week or two back in 2008.

And then nothing since.

My lone card that has gone missing is one of the four printing plates of my favorite player from the 2006 Topps Allen & Ginter set, a brand that probably established itself as one of my favorites upon its arrival all those years ago.

My missing card? The magenta printing plate.

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First Look: Rittenhouse Marvel: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season One

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

One of last season’s most-anticipated television shows, Marvel: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. took fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe beyond what they saw at the movies and tied in its stories seamlessly to other comic book-themed projects. Now, Rittenhouse Archives has attempted to recapture the magic of this series on cardboard for fans with a look back the the program’s early episodes.

Packing at least one Autograph and one Relic in each box, Rittenhouse Marvel: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season One hits store shelves next week and is expected to deliver strong value to collectors in addtion to carrying on the strong tradition of trading card sets based off Marvel’s movies.

What can be found in boxes of Rittenhouse Marvel Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season One? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Gallery: 2014-15 SP Authentic basketball cards

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

The Collegiate Licensing Company era for Upper Deck comes to a close today with the arrival of 2014-15 SP Authentic Basketball, but the manufacturer is ending things in a manner that should please many collectors.

Hobbyists and dealers were expecting to see plenty of strong content coming out of packs, but Upper Deck may exceed those expectations with the addition of unannounced Fleer Showcase cards that include the always-popular Jambalaya inserts and plenty of autographs.

Earlier today, the company’s Facebook page provided the public with a look at what they could potentially pull. Check out a gallery after the jump. Read More »

Josh Donaldson talks baseball cards on MLB Central

Beckett Baseball‘s Chris Olds recently caught up with Josh Donaldson during the Panini America Spring Training Road Trip where the subject of his baseball card values came up.

On Tuesday the Toronto Blue Jays third baseman was on MLB Network‘s MLB Central — and that discussion came up once again.

Check it out …

Molson Stanley Cup ring replicas a hit with fans

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor

One of the greatest treasures for many hockey collectors is a Stanley Cup ring, which are traditionally presented to players, management and team staff in recognition for bringing home the sport’s ultimate prize. They are coveted by many, but earned by few.

Now, hockey fans of legal drinking age have a chance to own a replica Stanley Cup ring of their own when they purchase specially-marked cases of Molson Canadian. Beer promotions have been extremely springtime promotions for some of Canada’s big breweries over the years and there are 20 different rings to collect bearing logos of championship teams from different eras. Each ring is also blind-bagged and comes in a special presentation box.

What teams are a part of this promotion? Find out by viewing a complete gallery after the jump. Read More »

First look: 2015 Topps Supreme baseball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

September will be a Supreme time of year.

Why? Because Topps revealed the next edition of Topps Supreme on Wednesday and the hit-based product’s 2015 edition will arrive in September with potentially more punch than ever in its brief history.

Each pack of 2015 Topps Supreme will include just two cards — both autographs — and there will be 20 packs per case. The company promises “bigger and bolder cards with more 1/1 unique hits and colossal pulls that collectors have come to love with the Supreme brand.”

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National Treasures redemptions ready to go

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Panini’s 2014 National Treasures Football arrives Wednesday, and the company announced there are a few redemption cards in the product. But many of these redemptions will be ready to fulfill immediately.

These cards include some of the top 2014 rookies such as Teddy Bridgewater, Derek Carr, Eric Ebron and Marqise Lee, and superstars such as Deion Sanders, Brett Favre, J.J. Wat and Russell Wilson. Panini even shared many images of these cards (see the gallery below) as proof they are ready to send out.

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Mutombo, Leslie Head Hoop Hall Class of 2015

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame will be growing once again in 2015 and its newest members were announced yesterday. Among those elected were eight-time NBA All-Star and defensive standout Dikembe Mutombo and WNBA icon Lisa Leslie.

For many longtime collectors, there are plenty of memories of Mutombo’s arrival in the NBA back in 1991-92 and over his first 10 seasons, he was named the league’s Defensive Player of the Year four times. Leslie is regarded as one of the greatest players in WNBA history and also helped lead the United States to four straight Olympic gold medals between 1996 and 2008.

Joining them will be iconic names from the past in Spencer Haywood and Jo Jo White along with celebrated coach John Calipari and iron man official Dick Bavetta, who blew the whistle in 2,635 consecutive games before retiring last year.

Who else will be officially inducted in September? Find out after the jump. Read More »

Beckett Auctions lands Benanti Collection

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Beckett Auctions is pleased to announce the acquisition of items from The Benanti Collection. This collection comes from a former employee of Xograph, the lenticular printing company who was responsible for the three-dimensional items released by Topps and Kellogg’s throughout the 1970s and 1980s.  He later worked for Sportflics and also did photography for Topps.  The collection includes everything from uncut sheets to prototype cards and signed baseballs. It also includes an authenticated Andy Warhol “Daisy” three-dimensional print.

“This is a massive and incredibly significant collection”, said Rob Springs, Business Lead for the Auction Division.  “Many of the items we will be offering over the next few months have never been seen in the hobby. We are very pleased to be able to offer these items up for auction in both our Goodwin and Beckett Monthly auction houses.”

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Bringing camaraderie back to collecting

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By David Lee | Beckett Football Editor

Collecting football cards today can be a very isolated, almost lonely experience. The individual cards we want to add to our collection are just a few clicks away. Experiencing the hobby with other people is often lost. But Arizona collector Mike Abbott and his friends are bringing the camaraderie back to collecting.

In 2010, several years removed from Mike’s collecting days as a kid, Mike and his friend started to dive back into the hobby. They decided to buy some boxes of 2010 Topps football cards. “We had a blast,” Mike says. He then set the goal of building a master set, while his friend went after the short prints and various color parallels. The next year, they decided to get an entire case of Topps.

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