Panini signs No. 1 pick Anthony Davis


By Chris Olds | Beckett Basketball Editor

The Unibrow has a new home with Panuni America.

Err, Panini America.

Anthony Davis, the  No. 1 overall pick in this year’s NBA Draft, signed an exclusive card and autograph agreement with the company, which was announced on Wednesday.

Panini, the lone licensee of officially licensed NBA cards but not the only manufacturer of basketball cards, now has deals with 54 of the 60 picks in this year’s draft. He’ll join Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Thomas Robinson, Harrison Barnes, Andre Drummond, Austin Rivers, Jared Sullinger and John Henson, who all signed exclusive deals with Panini before the draft.

“Anthony Davis is a tremendous player – not only on the basketball court but also in the world of officially licensed trading cards – and his impact on our complete line of 2012-13 NBA products will be substantial,” said Panini America CEO Mark Warsop in a prepared release. “We proudly welcome him into the Panini America family, where his Rookie Cards will be among the most coveted collectibles in the sports world next season.”

A member of the national champion Kentucky Wildcats, Davis was the team’s leading scorer (14.2 ppg) at the University of Kentucky and shot-blocker (4.7 per game) as well as tops in the country. He’s the fourth No. 1-0verall draft pick to sign with Panini, joining Kyrie Irving, John Wall and Blake Griffin.

He’ll make his Rookie Card debut in 2012-13 NBA Hoops which arrives on Aug. 15, though he just might appear on his first card sooner as Panini has yet to announce two promo card subjects for the National Sports Collectors Convention which begins this evening in Baltimore and runs through Sunday.

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.



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