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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Few From the Bay

I thought I would take a moment and share a few new acquisitions that recently came to my door via the E of Bay.  I have been on there way too much lately, partially because of trying to unload some of THE CUP cards I picked up, the other part because it becomes addicting.

I received three cards in the mail last week that all will find their place into my PC.  Here they are in no particular order...

The first one is this 2010-11 Certified Mirror Red Dual Sweater #'d/150 of former Dallas Star and current Pittsburgh Penguin James Neal.  I have always liked James Neal.  He's been on my fantasy team quite often and always seems like the guy that doesn't make a lot of noise and just lets his game speak for itself.  I like that.  I haven't gone crazy yet and started a PC of him or anything but it's an option.  I just wish Crosby would get healthy.  I think that line would do amazing things. 

Panini did an interesting thing on these cards.  The swatch cut outs are positioned into the card design so that depending on the sweater color, it may or may not blend into the card.  When I first bid on this, I had no idea it had the GU pieces in it.  Wasn't I surprised?

The second card that came was this 2011 Topps Game Day Autograph of Emmanuel Sanders.  As you can see, it's a sticker auto and Mr. Sanders isn't going to win any penmanship awards anytime soon.  But it's a great looking card in my opinion of an up and coming Steeler.  He was a 3rd round pick in last years draft and hasn't quite broken into the full time roster for Bruce Arians offense, at least yet.  He still plays a role as could be seen in last week abysmal showing by the "black & yellow".  He hauled in two passes for 20 yards, one of which for six.  Here's hoping for more to come. 

Apparently there are four different versions of each of these autograph cards in the Topps set.  Each one features a write up on the back talking about a different moment in a particular game from last season.  These "Game Day Moments" are broken down by quarter.  This card here is 2nd quarter.  I'm not sure on scarcity or whatnot of each version.

Finally, we got this 2010-11 Limited Phenoms Autograph #'d/299 of my apparent "man-crush" Eric Tangradi.  I believe this makes 10 Tangradi autos, or maybe 11, I lost count.  Invariably, it means he will either be traded, retire, or suffer a career ending injury because that is my luck.  I know I always say that but I have a bad track record.  Hopefully he can recover from that concussion he got back in February, make a big impression in the Prospects Tournament coming up, and strap the skates back on for the Pens.  His size and presence on the ice are key to him maximizing his potential.  He just needs to get tougher along the boards, own the paint, and master the art of being a "pest" in front of the net.  Lots to handle but I think he can do it.

I really like these cut out style cards.  I think the concept is cool as it makes the card look more like a focal piece for display.  They did a really good job with the Crown Royal Scratching The Surface ones with the rink inset and the material patch with the team logo on these is really well done too.  I can't believe I'm saying this but, good job Panini.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Last Chance for Upper Deck's THE CUP (for real this time)

This is just a shameless self promotion for my Ebay Auctions because I can.

Anyone that might have been interested in any of THE CUP cards that were pulled from my last box break video can go check them out on my Ebay Auction page.  I believe I placed everything from the boxes up for sale so there is nothing left behind.  Most of the Auctions end TODAY!  Some start at $.99.

There are also a few football cards on there including a 1/1 Calvin Johnson Artist Sketch card from last years Topps set and some Orange Refractors as well.  I also put up a few of the autograph hits out of a 2010-11 SP Authentic Hockey box that was thrown into my THE CUP deal.  There are cards of Dany Heatley, Zach Hamill, rookies Dana Tyrell and Zac Dalpe, and others.  Most of these start at $.99 as well.  Check them out.  

You can also click on the little applet thingy over on the right that keeps scrolling through auction images.  That will take you right to the page.

Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Video Box Break - - 2010-11 Upper Deck The Cup

The Cup!!  That Holy of Holy's...the proverbial Grail of the sports card world was released back on August 30th to it's annual massive fanfare of praises, jaw drops, and eye ball pops.  And from this collector's standpoint, it was quite impressive.

I have never been a big proponent of The Cup because as a standard-type run of the mill collector, there just usually isn't the coin to plunk down a mortgage payment for 10-15 cards.  My last mass foray into the Cup was back in 2006 when a couple guys and myself split a case and boy was I disappointed.  Since then, I have only managed a few singles here and there when they catch my eye.

Well enough standing in the shadows.  It's time I venture into the ring where the big dogs play and get myself a taste for the finer things.  Yes, my friends.  I ventured to the uber-premium side of collecting and picked up a couple boxes of Upper Deck's 2010-11 The Cup.  Did I die from it as I thought I would?  No.  Did I hurt a little afterward?  Yes, maybe.  But it was a whole lot of fun, and quite exhilarating to boot.

A couple of things to note though.  I was kind of shocked by the serial numbering of some of the cards.  The fact that there are cards numbered out of 249 or higher was perplexing to me considering the steep price tag on this set.  Anything over 200 seems out of sorts for this level, at least to me.  Also, the amount of plain color swatches is a little ridiculous.  I know it happens and is a reoccurring theme in the industry but for a super premium product to throw 3-4 of the same color on one card???  That's kind of nuts, don't you think?  The last thing...quality control.  Since these are hand packed, I would think there would be better care made to keep corners and edges clean.  Especially when you have foil embossing that tends to flake with little to no force.  I didn't see that kind of care here, even if it was only on the base cards (on another guys box that bought one too).

But enough criticism.  While I didn't love the nervous twitch this decision gave me or the indigestion afterward, I loved busting the product.  The whole experience was fun and exciting.  Upper Deck made the packages very rewarding and made me feel like I was really getting something special.  I was skeptical at first but to hold the cards in hand is something quite awe inspiring (flair for the dramatic?).  Even more so when they come straight from a pack that you opened yourself.   

I busted everything right there in my LCS so I had nothing to open officially on camera but I did a little video anyway.  Here it is if you'd like to waste about 14 minutes..

As you can see by my overwhelming enthusiasm, I am not really attached to any of these cards despite their aesthetic beauty.  I pulled no Penguins, which was probably the only bad part about the whole thing.  I pulled one more autograph than expected but also got one more base card than I would have liked so it balances out.  They were, as I said, a blast to open though.  Such an adrenalin rush.

If anyone out there might be interested in any of these beauts, they are all posted on my Ebay auction site against my best judgement, and also a few football I found lying around that I got tired of looking at, including my 1/1 Calvin Johnson Sketch Card that I have been asked close to 100 times about.

It will be interesting to see where, if anywhere, these might go considering The Cup is notorious for spiraling out of control at times on auction, although, I doubt any of mine would because I didn't pull any Lemieux, Gretzky, Crosby, or Ovechkin's.  Either way, if I can recoup half a box it will have been worth it.

Here are some scans for those that couldn't get a good look because of my shoddy video skills.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Quick Trade Post

Then, vacation. 

Just wanted to do a quick trade post from a package I got from my good friend Dave over at Wax Stain Rookie.  Dave does a nice job on all of his posts and video breaks.  You should check out his site if you don't already do so. 

Dave and I have been working on a trade that would send another familiar face my way for a small sampling of recent rookies.  We finally came to an agreement and as his cards are still (assuming) in-transit as mine were rescued from their yellow paper sleeping chamber yesterday.  Here you go.

What's better than a Mario Lemieux rookie card?

The answer is obvious.  TWO MARIO LEMIEUX ROOKIE CARDS.  This would be the second one I've added to the PC in less than two months.  My goal of four is half way complete.  This is another Topps version.  It isn't perfect but who cares?  It's a Mario Lemieux Rookie Card for cardboard god sake!  I think I may even try to get 6 of them now, and 6 O-Pee-Chee ones to go with it.

Also in the package were a few other cards for the old player collection PCs...

A few Billy G's.

Both featuring his stint with the New York Football Islanders.  I do already have both of these but again, I don't care.  I have some sick obsession for Black Diamond cards.  I don't know why.  Also, I think I have enough of these MVP cards to try and put the set together.  Although, do I really want to start another set that I may never finish.  Heck, I might already have it started for all I know.  I'm so unorganized.

The BAP Billy is one that I did not have.  Guerin as a Shark are hard to come by, especially in the "non-frankencard" variety.  You know what I'm talking about.  Great addition to the PC.

Finally, he was kind enough to throw in one of the rarer finds.  It's the 1997-98 Pinnacle Mint Die-Cut Jaromir Jagr Ultra Buyback Redemption Update card; a true Ebay 1/1.  It has been updated to reflect recent events.

Thank you to Dave at Wax Stain Rookie.  Hopefully you will get the same enjoyment out of your end of the deal.

I'm finally taking a well needed vacation for about a week or so to go visit family so posting will cease.  Not that I have been regularly posting anyway but...

Thank you and good night.