First look: Panini Crusade basketball cards

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor

A war is coming.

Well, make that a crusade after Panini America revealed the first looks at its latest forthcoming brand on Wednesday — 2012-13 Panini Crusade — a retro-styled brand in the style of the popular (and pricey) insert cards from the late 1990s.

The base set will include 100 cards capped by 15 rookies. A Crusade parallel will copy the entire set in a few shades, while there will be two 25-card insert sets called Nobility and Royalty. In addition, the company said, there will be a pair of 100-card autograph sets in this $20-per-pack product. They will be Quest Autographs and Majestic Signatures.

There will be six packs per box and five cards per pack with three autographs and three memorabilia cards per box. Each box also will include six Crusades inserts and six more inserts beyond that.

For game-used memorabilia fans, there will be a pair of 100-card insert sets — Quest Memorabilia and Majestic Materials.

The Crusade cards will make up a 300-card release — a Prizm-based printing style with Red, Blue, Purple, Gold, Green and Black versions.  Crusade cards first appeared back in 1998 Donruss baseball as well as in Rookies and Stars football.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Basketball magazine. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.


  1. @Jaypers413
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    Countdown to Brian Gray’s response in 5….4….3…..

  2. kmart for life
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

    this looks like leaf valiant??? I hope somebody gets fired or fines for allowing this to be made looking the way it does.

  3. Tom Waldron
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    Is it me Chris but doesn’t the CRUSADE insert looka an awful lot like LEAF VALIANT . see Valiant baseball.
    RIIIP OFF or coincidence not sure. I just found it intresting . Personally I’m looking to see Elite and SELECT.
    TOM W

  4. bearcatlawjd
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

    Will Panini even try to bring this baseball? Wouldn’t life be easier if the Leaf wasn’t it own brand? They bring back this IP when they let the Donruss brand go to waste?

  5. Chris
    Posted February 21, 2013 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    This is just a big FU to Brian G. and I love Panini for doing it. Know your place, Leaf.

  6. chrisolds
    Posted February 21, 2013 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

    The design is from the 1998 Donruss baseball and the 1998 Leaf Rookies & Stars sets called Crusade.

    Panini opted to not renew its deal for the Leaf name — it was owned by a third party — and now, another company, Leaf Trading Cards owns the rights to the name, which it picked up from the third party.

    Both are claiming the design as part of their legacies.

    Let the fun ensue.

  7. steve emerick
    Posted February 21, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    to the poster who want Brian gray to know his place.

    I’ll have you know, America was built on capitalism and new ventures, and Leaf/Razor represent some new ideas that I think are solid!

    Putting down Brian Gray for his efforts is like putting down our founding fathers.

    So a big “__” to you too!

  8. tom waldron
    Posted February 21, 2013 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

    Ok I get it to each his own and as long as we both make money who cares.
    All I can say is it does blurr the line a little seems like you can take a Card issue and make it your own Brand name or comapny.
    I like the card insert either way if it’s Panini or Leaf .
    Shame Topps hasn’t made a play for Basketball. Liscence,
    I believe if they did Topps Chrome would sell out.
    just sayng…..

  9. Ben
    Posted February 22, 2013 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

    Chris, what third party licenses out the Leaf name? The candy company? Cause I don’t believe they even use that brand name anymore. I always got the impression that Gray just snatched up an abandoned trademark.

    Either way I don’t feel that just doing business as Leaf should automatically give his company the rights to the historical designs of past Leaf trading cards. Stuff like the Crusade copycat and the repacked 1990 cards with newly added serial numbering just makes me shake my head. Comes off like IP theft.

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