I hadn’t opened a pack of basketball cards in over 3 years. And when I returned to the hobby just recently over the last few months, I came back to find prices of blasters usually found at local retail stores being re-sold for much more than the normal retail price. The places I used to buy boxes online were selling them at the same inflated prices. I thought, what has happened here?
And even though I refuse to pay those inflated prices for packs, I really wanted to open some packs, like any card collector does. So I looked to ebay for some reasonable prices, even if the packs were older or less exciting than Prizm or Hoops Premium Stock.
I found an ebay lot of 12 packs, bid, and found myself the winner for a price I found very reasonable. Here’s a photo of what I purchased. And I have to say, some of these packs are just as exciting to me as Prizm and Hoops Premium. I opened a box of 2000-01 Fleer Showcase years ago, and those cards are beautiful. 1999-00 Topps Gallery, a quality product. And 2000-01 Ovation, I’ve opened my fair share of that product years ago. Really, anything that says Fleer, Topps, or Upper Deck between the years of 1993 and 2000, sign me up.
I tried to hold off and open them a pack per day, and of course I couldn’t do that, but I will separate the packs into a series of posts, since these may be the only packs I open for awhile. Were all of the cards in mint condition? Of course not. Were some cards stuck together in the packs? Yes. Did I expect anything special out of these? No. But did I care? No way, because I was opening packs again!
First up, 1999-00 Skybox Dominion. I’m familiar with the product. I probably opened a handful of those packs in repack boxes that used to be in stores like Target and Wal-Mart a few years after the Dominion came out. Each hobby pack has 9 cards, and hobby boxes had 36 packs per box.
Insert odds as listed on the pack-
- Game Day 2K 1:3
- 2 Point Play 1:9
- Sky’s the Limit 1:24
- Autographics 1:68
- Hats Off – no listed odds, serial numbered
- You Make the Call – no listed odds, serial numbered
‘Plus’ and ‘Warp Tek’ parallel versions of the inserts with with much higher odds.
The best rookies from the 1999-00 class were Elton Brand, Shawn Marion, Baron Davis, Steve Francis, Lamar Odom, Ron Artest, to name a few.
Dominion was a one-year product that featured black and white backgrounds with only the players in color. Pretty unique design for a base set and I think it works well. Downside is the text is hard to read because it kind of blends in with the background.
Here’s what I pulled:
9 Grant Long, Atlanta Hawks
95 Jerry Stackhouse, Detroit Pistons
23 Keon Clark, Denver Nuggets
That Stackhouse is a sweet card. Who remembers that Stack averaged 29.8 points per game during the 2000-01 season for Detroit? What’s most impressive to me about his career is his longevity. He transitioned from a primary scorer to a key complimentary player for some really good Mavs teams, including the 2005-06 team that lost to the Heat in the NBA Finals.
84 Reggie Miller, Indiana Pacers
6 Mitch Richmond, Washington Wizards
188 Rik Smits, Indiana Pacers – World Tour Subset
These Pacers cards are not new to me, but there’s no substitute for pulling guys you collect out of a pack of cards, and even better, two of my top 5 favorite players ever.
Mitch Richmond had 6 all-star seasons with the Sacramento Kings before being traded to the Wizards for Chris Webber.
The Smits is from a subset where the flag for the home country is in the background on the card. Big fan of the Dunkin’ Dutchman!
203 Lamar Odom, Los Angeles Clippers, Rookie Card
2 Isaiah Rider, Portland Trailblazers
133 Darrick Martin, Los Angeles Clippers
The lone rookie out of the pack, and one of the better ones in Lamar Odom. Had a long successful career with the Clippers, Heat, Lakers, among others. Will most remember him for the 2004 Eastern Conference Semifinal series with a young Dwyane Wade going up against the veteran Pacers. This was before being traded to LA as part of a package for Shaq. A tougher series than expected for the Pacers who won in 6. I at least remember being surprised and impressed by this Heat team. Of course the Pacers went on to lose to the eventual champion Pistons in the East Finals.
And lastly a few players who changed teams, reflected by the ‘Traded To’ and ‘Signed By’ next to the team on the front of the card. Rider ended up averaging over 19 points per game in his lone season in Atlanta.
Martin ended up playing for 8 different teams during his NBA career, his most successful with the Cippers.
No inserts out of this lone pack, but pulling two Pacers made this a succesful one in my book.