Even though the Bulls are out of it (big surprise there...), let's continue with the "Basketball Playoff Pack Purge" with some classic Hoops.
1992-93 Series 2 features rookies such as Shaquille O'Neal (aka Kazaam, aka Steel, aka Blue Chip), trades and "updates" (whatever that means). It also features a lot of dreck to pad the number of cards in the series. You'll see....
This pack front always reminded me of Tecmo NBA Basketball for NES. Either during the opening sequence or when you do something great and it gives you a cutaway animation. Or am I the only one here who played that consistently? I loved playing games of that shooting nothing but threes and winning. On to the cards.
#443 - Donald Royal - I love this picture. Instead of choosing a more graceful shot, Hoops gives us Donny Roy Roy (nobody called him that) getting whack-a-moled and in the middle of falling down hard. I don't think he's making the shot, either.
#484 - Patrick Ewing: Trivia - Here's some of the dreck filler. These are all questions about "points." There are five questions listed on the back (#16-20), and none of the answers! So, you can get an idea as to how many of these cards might be found in the set already.
#427 - Chucky Brown - How do I put this delicately? Mr. Brown's facial expression looks less than intelligent. And it makes me laugh to see him screaming "Noooooo" in slow motion on this card.
#394 - Kennard Winchester - I don't really have much to say about Kennard. A lot of you may not like the design, but I really dig the simplicity of it all. I guess maybe the only problem is that you essentially get two borders. Other than that, it's uncomplicated, clean and effective.
#358 - Tony Bennett - Next season, hoops would fall into the Gold parallel trap. This season, gold was reserved for rookies. It's a nice touch to distinguish them, especially when you get a no-name like this. And you though all he did was sing.
#374 - Kevin Brooks - I don't really know Brooks, but he looks to be a wizard on the court. Look at the way he's levitating that ball without any effort. The back says he was the #18 overall pick the year before. Ouch. Guess that didn't work out too well.
#421 - Christian Laettner - Hey! One of the top three rookies you could get in this set! Although, I dislike Laettner. I guess I always felt he didn't belong on the Dream Team (and looking back, I'd say I was right) and hated his stupid face and reaction after he hit "the shot" in college. I'm petty like that.
#385 - Jud Buechler - Baywatch: The Trading Card. If I'm not mistaken, I believe that Jud also played pro volleyball in the off-season. Maybe not pro (wikipedia isn't helping me), but something like that. He was a non-factor in the Bulls' second three titles.
#420 - Eric Murdock - So, here's the back. Again, very simple and basic. Up to this point, Hoops never had much variation in how their card backs looked. This is a little too bland for me and brings down the overall visual value of the cards significantly.
#400 - Kenny Williams - As you can tell, reserving certain numbers for the stars wasn't really something Hoops did.
#444 - Greg Grant - I forget for sure, but I think this is the first year of these new Sixers uniforms. One of the many 90s NBA jerseys that were just too busy visually. The old look was better.
#5 (of 10) - Tom Gugliotta - Magic's All-Rookie Team - Great Gug-ily Moogily, an insert! A lot of people had high hopes for this guy. I knew the center talent of the draft ended with Shaq and Alonzo. I gladly traded my Toms to suckers willing to pony up veterans. These inserts have a picture of Magic Johnson on the back and his thoughts on the player. As you can tell, the gold on these cards ain't just ink. We're talkin' foil now, boys.
Not a bad way to end the pack. I got less filler and more players. The pack doesn't list the odds for the insert, but research tells me they are 1:30 packs, so not too shabby! Say what you will, but even though the set is a little bland, it's my kind of bland. And it's a huge step up from previous years where the border took up 50% of the card.