Panini Cutting the Number of Basketball Card Sets in 2018-19


Panini is taking a less is more approach with their basketball card line in 2018-19. The plan is to cut the number of releases to 22 for the season, down from 27 in 2017-18.

To do this, six brands are getting cut while one will be added. Totally Certified gives way to 2018-19 Panini Certified Basketball, which is slated to come out in November.

Four of the other lines that aren’t returning were introduced in the sport in 2017-18. These include Ascension, Essentials, Status, and Vanguard. Prestige Basketball is also being put on the shelf.

With the smaller number of products, Panini hopes to achieve a couple of things. The first is to get more assets like autographs and memorabilia into existing sets. Additionally, they hope it will help them make a smaller release calendar, having the final 2018-19 releases in 2019’s third quarter and before the first of the 2019-20 NBA sets come out.

This wasn’t the case last month as 2017-18 Flawless Basketball came out on October 31, a week after 2018-19 NBA Hoops arrived.

The announcement came during a presentation at the Southern Hobby Expo in Nashville, a gathering for shop owners.


Ryan Cracknell

A collector for much of his life, Ryan focuses primarily on building sets, Montreal Expos and interesting cards. He's also got one of the most comprehensive collections of John Jaha cards in existence (not that there are a lot of them). Got a question, story idea or want to get in touch? You can reach him by email and through Twitter @tradercracks.

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  1. RJ 6 November, 2018 at 12:59

    I think this is actually a good thing, if they would be willing to space the releases out a little bit to update the sets in closer alignment with player movement. Example … I’m a huge Sacramento Kings fan, I would love to not have to wait until the end of the year for a card of a new player to the team like Nemanja Bjelica. They have so many sets coming out at relatively the same time early in the season that it seems like they’re all essentially the same product.

  2. goblue98 6 November, 2018 at 13:50

    I think that this is a great move by Panini. Hopefully, they reduce the number of Football and Baseball products as well.

  3. JDonovan 6 November, 2018 at 16:46

    I have no problem with them lowering the number of sets, but the ones they axed are almost exclusively mid range sets. Basketball is just about 75% high end sets now. That’s fine for the high rollers, but not for me. I think I am done with basketball at least until someone else gets a license.

  4. Larry 6 November, 2018 at 18:59

    I like this also. But I do wish there was only 12 products a year for each sport from each company, that’s more than enough to go around. 1 New product a month would be ideal to me.

  5. claude 6 November, 2018 at 20:54

    while i dont mind a reduction in the number of products , i am disappointed to see that 2 of my 3 favorites (prestige and status) from this year are going bye-bye….

  6. John S. 8 November, 2018 at 08:52

    So how many low end products (3 bucks or less per pack) will remain? That’s all I really collect anymore. Seems like the kids are being priced out even more.

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