Tuesday, October 21, 2014

2008-09 Upper Deck Champs hockey

Another run through Random.org and we are posting a pack of hockey. Specifically, Champs from 2008-09. This was the inaugural release of this brand, and we posted the second year before. Just two years on this set, which is a shame because of it's look and it's subject matter. With the NHL license exclusive, let's hope UD gives this set another go around.

Hobby release. I need to get a box of this before my LCS sells them out. If you have never seen Champs, think of Gypsy Queen for hockey. Both releases ties the prehistoric world with the hockey world. Sounds corny, but it works really well. Five cards in the pack, and there are possibilities of hits with relics and signatures on the mini cards.

First out is actually a mini of Simon Gagne. The only complaint I have with the design in the just slightly too much space where the name is located. Bring that a few pixels in and it would be perfect.

How Allen and Ginter is that? BEAUTIFUL!!!! I would put this up against 2008 A&G and it would make for a hell of a vote. So simple. So perfect. Now you know why I want this set.

Base set is just 100 cards. From cards 101-200 are Rookies, seeded 1 per 8 packs. So in a box, you are only getting three on average.

Champs is a set that even Luongo looks good. If the set was called "Hawks", well.... not so much.

Here's the card back. Nice gray chipboard for this set. Just five years of stats. Still - this is nothing to take away from this pretty set.

Well looky here! Got a hit out of this pack with a Kronwell mini auto. Three hits per box, 2 autos and a relic, so I pulled one out of the box with this Niklas. No sticker either.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

2014 Upper Deck Goodwin Champions

I have so many scanned packs in my APTBNL folder I couldn't decide which to post, so after a quick run thru Random.org, today we are posting Upper Deck's 2014 release of their A&G-ish product, Goodwin Champions.

This is a set I really, really want to like. But after a couple great releases and the loss of some licensing, I can't get into this. Don't get me wrong - I think, subject wise, UD does a great job choosing who appears. It's just a dreadful design and painful to look at. I like that is it printed on old chipboard stock - that is a plus. The images are creepy, though.

On the rare chance you get a subject that you cannot see their face, the card is nice. The framing around the person is a little too heavy. The scan may not be showing all the scroll detail in the border, also.

See. Kind of juuuuuuuuuuust missing the look of the person. At least there is no foil on these cards anywhere.

Here's the licensing issue in play. I guess that makes for unique cards with players not in their sport. One thing I do like - the fact that the subject is busting out of the center frame at the top. That's cool.

I am not sure the different color border on this card. Johnny D-Bag Jackass Foosball is not a short print. My guess is just slight variation to add the the charm and "age" of the set.

One mini every other pack. This is a canvas mini, limited to 99. Now these I like. I think it's the tactile feel that makes them enjoyable. I like all the sets like this though - Masterpieces and even 95-96 Fleer baseball. Before you ask - yes, it is that off center. That is not my scanner.

You get no stats on Goodwin - that's neat. I think retro sets should avoid the stat tables and have the backs feel more higher end.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

1993 O-Pee-Chee Baseball

O' Canada with pack of O-Pee-Chee baseball. Total of 9 cards in a pack. Let's rip
208 - Eric Karros - plain design on the front with a name, position, and team name. On the back has watermark of team logo with stats and write up in english and french.
227 - Tim Wakefield - remember when he started out with Pirates and before he learned the knuckleball?
179 - Jack Morris - one of clutch players in the playoffs especially World Series
346 - Mike Sharperson
358 - Reggie Sanders
 124 - Bill Gullickson - here something I didn't know about. He along with two pitchers led the league in wins in 1991.
234 - Jerry Browne
58 - Pat Borders - not much of hitter but came alive in 1992 World Series winning MVP
1 - Pat Borders (World Series Heroes) - Another Borders' card this time as insert. Possibly one of most obscure World Series MVP

Who's ready for World Series?

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

2014 Topps WWE Road to Wrestlemaia

Another WWE card set from Topps. Road to Wrestlemania featured highlights to build of Wrestlemania 30. It's 110 base set with 60 card subset on 30 years of Wrestlemania, and three insert sets featuring Trish Stratus, Undertaker Streak, and tribute to Ultimate Warrior.  Let's open
The Streak 14-0: Mark Henry - The Streak insert set featuring opponents Undertaker faced and defeated at Wrestlemania.  This one from Wrestlemania 22 when he defeated Mark Henry in a casket match
58 (of 60) - 30 Years of Wrestlemania: John Cena defeats The Rock - 30 Years of Wrestlemania subset. This one from previous Wrestlemania which Cena beat the Rock for WWE Championship.
42 (of 60) - 30 Years of Wrestlemania: Batista Defeats Triple H - from Wrestlemania 21 when Batista defeated Triple H for World Heavyweight Championship. That Wrestlemania started new era which featured him along with John Cena.
13 - The Shield First Loss
11 - Brock Lesnar Defeated Triple H in a cage match
24 - AJ Lee Attacks Dolph Ziggler After He Dumps Her
51 - John Cena Defeats Alberto del Rio for World Heavyweight Championship

I prefer sticking to 30 Years of Wrestlemania subset along with insert than building base set

Sunday, October 12, 2014

2010 Topps Star Wars - The Clone Wars: Rise Of The Bounty Hunters


Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend.  How about those baseball playoffs?  Personally, I thought the Royals were just a feel good story and they would be promptly dispatched by the Angels.  Now they are very legit up 2-0 on the Orioles...very entertaining.

Anyway, 3 years ago today I made my first post here at APTBNL.  Somehow, the collective blogdom have yet to kick me out, and for that I am grateful.  So, continuing the sci-fi theme of my anniversary posts, here's a pack of 2010 Topps Star Wars - The Clone Wars:  Rise Of The Bounty Hunters!

I found a pack of this in the old $.99 Target bin (I say old because both this and the $1.59 bin have been MIA for a few months now).  If they had more packs like this in there, I would have been all over it, instead of packs like this and this, and yes, even this.

A search on the interwebs reveals that this is a 90 card set with 4 cards devoted to an episode of the Second Season.  If anyone wants to see a checklist, go here.  Also, you can see what all the cards look like here.  So, what did I get?

#65 - The Invincible's End
#38 - Grievous' Cruelty
#60 - The Invisible Enemy

The Clone Wars ran for 5 seasons on Cartoon Network, then was cancelled when the Mouse bought Lucasfilm.  A sixth and final season aired on Netflix back in March, which tied up all the loose ends.  The series took place between Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.  Here are the backs of the first three cards:

Since 4 cards are used for each episode, it appears two cards provide an episode recap, one is for episode trivia, and the other card is for the "opening crawl", which is actually spoken by the narrator in the opening minutes of each episode.  Sometimes the "opening crawl" contains a moral, replacing "A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...." in the movies, and that appears on the episode recap card. 

#4 of 5 - Anakin (Motion Card)

There are 5 Motion Cards in the set, and they come 1 in 6 packs.  As with all cards of this type, the scanner makes it less cool than it actually is...who doesn't like motion cards?

#23 - The Master's Assault
#50 - A Fruitless Search?
#89 - Aurra Sing Caught?

And since I showed the backs of the first three...

Anyway, that's the pack.  It's certainly been fun writing up these occasional posts for you all, and it's not like I'm low on material, so I'll be sticking around.  Until next time...thanks for reading!

2014 Cryptozoic Adventure Time Trading Cards

I picked up this pack from The Book End in Stockbridge, GA for $3.00. I typically check out at least one pack of any new non-sport card products I see just to get a feel for the set and if I should buy some more. Turns out the Adventure Time set is about a perfect non-sport set that I could ask for. 

The two main focuses of the set are cards featuring title cards from the episodes of the show [which number more than 150 thus far] and cards featuring original art for the set. "Tree Trunks" was Episode 4 of Season 1 while "Crystals Have Power" was Episode 8 of Season 2.  Autographs fall 1:24 packs, sketch cards 1:24, and relic cards are 1:96 packs or one in three full boxes. What exactly is an Adventure Time relic? How does an animated show have relics? All good questions. Here are a few examples for sale.  

#20 Tree Trunks
#31 Crystals Have Power

This is clearly one of the greatest cards ever made! Be careful or you might melt your face!

In This Issue #05 

In This Issue #13

In This Issue #04

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

2013-14 Panini Titanium

Hockey is back!!!

The quest for the Cup begins today with four games. I am not sure if I get more excited with Spring Training or NHL camps. But I am glad it's back, because baseball in Chicago was no fun, football sucks (Cutler will NEVER lead a team to the SB), and basketball doesn't thrill me. Let's get another folder posted. Another release we won't be seeing this year is Panini's Titanium.

 Titanuim is another hit per pack product, but this was released only in Canadian stores, or could be ordered thru the Panini website. My LCS bought a couple boxes to sell, so I grabbed a pack. With a name like Titanium, I think the pack is a perfect reflection - alllllllll silver-y. Only 4 cards in a pack. What's my hit?

Think of Upper Deck Black Diamond, and lose the hashing. You have Titanium. Not a lot to the design. Simple is nice, but the premise, and the silver washed out background. Not the best. And even though this card may be framed ok on the design (see that line running north to south from the Titanium logo), because of the coloring, this is horribly unbalanced.

Better job on this one. The name is nice, as since the card is mostly foil, the name is easy to read. Team name underneath that??? Not so much.

The web says the rookies make this a popular set. Funny, I didn't pull a base of any rookies. That's ok. With the silver background, this look nice. But not nice enough to purchase more packs, considering the price. The backs...

Slightly different layout than other Panini releases. But same recycled photo and one year of stats. My guaranteed hit?

Sticker auto of a rookie goalie for the Pens. Ok - I complained about the lack of a rookie too soon. Not sure how much play he will get with Flurey in goal, but let's hope he comes up soon. Here's a rarity on APTBNL - let's see the back of this card.

HOLY CRAP!!! It's a different photo. Things that make you go....