Pack Break: Panini Hoops Pack One

Not having opened any packs of 11-12 cards yet this year, I decided to pick up four hobby packs of the relatively new Panini Hoops product from a local card store. I am opening a pack a day and posting the results to give an idea of what the typical pack contains. The first pack had the following:

#9 Glen Davis
#67 Jeremy Lin
#126 Ersan Ilyasova
#148 Cole Aldrich
#183 Craig Brackins
#211 Jason Thompson
#246 JaVale McGee
Hoops Dreams #6 Stephen Curry 

Already a fan of the inserts- an inexpensive set paired with sharp looking inserts make a good product for me.

Also can’t go wrong with pulling Jeremy Lin’s first card in a Knick uniform! More to come tomorrow.


Box Break: 2010-11 Panini Prestige Retail

The Set:
2010-11 Panini Prestige
8 packs per retail box, 10 cards per retail pack
150 card base veterans and legends, 95 rookies (2 versions for each)
Bonus Shots parallel (#’d versions out of 499, 249, 49, 25 and rookies out of 999)
Franchise Favorites inserts and memorabilia versions
Playmakers inserts and memorabilia and autograph versions
Hardcourt Heroes inserts and memorabilia versions
Inside the Numbers inserts and memorabilia versions
Old School Inserts and memorabilia and autograph versions
NBA Draft Class inserts
Prestigious Picks inserts and memorabilia verions
Prestigious Pros inserts and memorabilia versions
Stars of the NBA inserts and memorabilia versions
Stat Stars inserts and memorabilia and autograph versions
Super Sophs inserts and memorabilia verions
True Colors inserts and memorabilia verions
NBA Draft Class Logo autographs

Our Break:


Rookies (8): John Wall, Paul George, Cole Aldrich, Greivis Vasquez, Quincy Pondexter x2 (both versions), Al-Farouq Aminu, Devin Ebanks,


Bonus Shots /499 (1): Amare Stoudemire


Franchise Favorites (1): Dwight Howard


Playmakers (1): Tyreke Evans


Prestigious Picks Materials Green /499 (1): James Anderson

Impressions:

Lacking a hobby box to break this week, I turned to my local Target and found this retail box on sale.  The results are pretty typical of what to expect from a retail box. Pulling the John Wall was fortunate and made the break an above average one, but with the rookies included and the game worn card, which I imagine is included at one-per-box on average, you could do much worse on a retail break.

The base set has both legends and current players.  It was nice to find old favorites such as Muggsey Bogues and Dell Curry in the product along with new stars of the game.

Honestly since I opened a few packs of Prestige upon its release, I’ve felt the base set design a bit lacking.  The gray splashes on the right don’t do anything for me, although the photography used for many of the cards is pretty exciting, such as in the Kobe for example.

If you can find these boxes, particularly at a discounted price, they are worth picking up for a fun break that delivers on rookies, inserts and memorablia cards.


Wednesday Wax: 2002-03 Fleer Hot Shots


The Set:
2002-03 Fleer Hot Shots
24 packs per box, 8 cards per pack
Base set contains 100 Basic cards, 29 Give and Go, 39 All-Stars
27 Rookie Hats-Off /350
6 Vince Carter Hats-Off /350
6 Rookies /350
Hot Hands Parallels /199, Rookies /99
Give and Go Dual Event/Game Used /50
All-Stars Triple Event/Game Used /25
Hot Shots 1:8 packs, Event Worn 1:30 packs
En Fuego 1:12 packs, Event Worn 1:44 packs
Net Burners 1:24 packs, Event Worn /100
Hot Numbers /350, Event Worn /50
Parallel Versions of Event Worn cards

Our Break:


Hot Hands Parallel (4): Grant Hill /199, Antoine Walker /199, Eric Snow and Keith Van Horn /199, John Salmons /99


Hot Shots (3): Yao Ming, Mike Dunleavy, Jared Jeffries


En Fuego (2): Vince Carter, Shaquille O’neal


Hot Numbers (1): Richard Jefferson


Net Burners (1): Steve Nash


Hot Shots Event Worn (1): Kareem Rush


 
Rookie Hats-Off /350 (3): Casey Jacobsen, John Salmons, Ronald Murray


Vince Carter Hats-Off /350 (1): Curtis Borchardt


En Fuego Event Worn (1): Karl Malone

Impressions:

A fun time for basketball breaks, to be sure.  The chase cards here are the Yao Ming rookie memorabilia cards, the All-Star Triple jerseys numbered to 25, as well as the other parallel memorabilia versions of the insert sets.

An excellent base set with lots of inserts, parallels and memorabilia cards in each box.  This is a 2000s box with a 90s feel.  It has two subsets. The Give and Go cards for the most part show a point guard or high assist man on the front with the finisher on the back.  The second subset contains participants in the previous year’s All-Star weekend, and by participants, I mean in the rookie-sophomore game, three-point contest, dunk contest, and All-Star game.  That’s why we have guys in there like Chris Mihm.

These cards have a glossy finish, more noticeable on the darker cards like some of the Rookie Hats-Off cards.  These memorabilia cards are condition sensitive, particularly on the corners.

Want to point out that the typical box will not contain 6 memorabilia cards.  The overall odds of pulling a memorabilia card are 1 in 8 packs, but this box contained a ‘hot pack’ with 4 memorabilia cards in the one pack (the 4 Rookie Hats-off cards).

Not sure how many redemption cards were inserted for this product, but we were lucky enough to avoid them.

Overall a blast to open, and it was certainly exciting to open a hot-pack, even if we didn’t hit any of the higher valued rookies such as Yao, Carlos Boozer, or the scarcer All-Star or Give and Go jerseys.  A product I wanted to open at the time it came out, and still a worthwhile break today.


Wednesday Wax: 1999-00 Topps Series 1 Hobby

The Set:
1999-00 Topps Series 1
36 packs per box, 11 cards per pack
Series 1 base set contains 110 base cards, 10 rookies inserted 1 in 5
MVP Promo, 1 in 336 packs
Record Numbers, 1 in 12 packs
Season’s Best, 1 in 12 packs
Patriarchs, 1 in 22 packs
Picture Perfect, 1 in 8 packs
Prodigy, 1 in 36 packs
Prodigy Refractor, 1 in 144 packs
Autographs Group A, 1 in 877 packs
Autographs Group B, 1 in 351 packs

Our Break:
Definitely received a complete base set, likely came up with two.  As with our Series 2 break, the base cards have the blindingly bright orange borders, with otherwise nice action shots of the player in the center.  The photography in the Shaq we’ve shown above is magnificent, capturing the dominance of Shaq’s time with the Lakers.  Again though, we busted this box for shot at some nice inserts, and because it was a cheap break with much enjoyment in pack breaking.  It’s nice to open 18 packs and realize you still have half the box to go.


’99 Draft Picks (8): Jason Terry, Corey Maggette x2, Ron Artest x2, Richard Hamilton x2, Elton Brand


Picture Perfect (6): Shaquille O’Neal, Alonzo Mourning, Keith Van Horn, Tim Hardaway, Ron Mercer, David Robinson


Record Numbers (4): Karl Malone, Kerry Kittles, Hakeem Olajuwon, Tim Duncan


Season’s Best (2): Tim Hardaway, Vince Carter


Patriarchs (2): Mitch Richmond, Patrick Ewing


Prodigy (1): Michael Doleac


Prodigy Refractors (1): Matt Harpring

Impressions:

Once again, the design and flair on some of these insert sets, Patriarchs and Season’s Best in particular, is something you just don’t see in modern-day sets.  The Picture Perfect inserts don’t do much for me, but most of the others are attractive and colorful sets.  Prodigy has a Chrome feel.  The excitement I felt opening the Prodigy insert and refractor quickly faded when I saw the players on each card.  Certainly could have done better, but pulling an insert with 1:144 odds felt pretty good.

Pulling multiples on several rookies was disappointing as well, but at least these are of guys that are still playing today.

As with our series 2 break, this one was a blast to break, and it won’t cost a fortune to pick up.  These should be available for under $30 on ebay or elsewhere.  One of these days we’ll open an autograph, but for now, we’ll treasure our Matt Harpring Refractor.


Wednesday Wax: 2000-01 Topps Reserve

The Set:
2000-01 Topps Reserve
10 packs per box, 5 cards per pack
Base set contains 100 base cards, 33 rookies
12 8×10 Autographed Canvas
21 All-Star Veteran Relics
15 All-Star Rookie Challenge Relics
1 PSA Graded rookie card included in each box

Our Break:
46/100 base set, 2 duplicates

Rookie Card /999 (1): Jamal Crawford


PSA Graded Rookie /999 (1): PSA 8 Craig ‘Speedy’ Claxton


All-Star Veteran Relic (1): Gary Payton


8×10 Autographed Canvas (1): Antawn Jamison

Impressions:

A unique set in several ways.  This was the only basketball set from Topps released under the ‘Reserve’ name, evolving from the ‘Gallery’ brand.  The card fronts have paint splotches to make up the card borders, with a game action shot centered to create the appearance of a canvas.  The card backs have some stats not typically included, showing how the player performed on various days rest (0,1,2,3+), in addition to season averages.  It was a bit disappointing to open any duplicates at all considering we opened less than half the base set, but could have been worse.

Something else that doesn’t make much sense to me is including anything less than PSA 9 graded cards in the box.  Unfortunately this wasn’t a great rookie class either.  We were fortunate to open one of the few still in the league as our regular rookie in Jamal Crawford.  Some of the other top rookies in this set are Kenyon Martin, Mike Miller, Hedo Turkoglu, and Stephen Jackson.  Yeah… ouch.

In 2000 the early craze for game used cards was in full swing.  A set of relic cards from All-Star weekend was a nice change.  Clearly there is a chance to open cards of some of the league’s best in this set, such as Stockton, Malone, Shaq, Duncan, Hill, Robinson, but also some up-and-comers at the time in Dirk Nowitzki, Paul Pierce, etc…

The draw of this box is of course the 8×10 canvas, with the grand prize being a Shaq or Magic Johnson autograph.  We weren’t lucky enough to open one of those, but Jamison isn’t a bad consolation.  The others on the checklist are Jermaine O’Neal, Elton Brand, Shawn Marion, Andre Miller, Baron Davis, Steve Francis, Wally Szczerbiak, Keyon Dooling, Larry Hughes, Mike Bibby, and Maurice Taylor.  The big prizes at the time were likely Brand and Steve Francis, the star rookies from the previous year.

If you want a different box-opening experience, as well as a chance (a slim one) at a Shaq or Magic canvas, this is a low-risk box that could result in a high-reward.


Wednesday Wax: 2010-11 Panini Totally Certified

The Set:
2010-11 Totally Certified
6 packs per box, 5 cards per pack
Base set contains 150 base cards, 35 rookies autographs
Relic and Gold Autograph versions of some of base set
15 Totally Certified Potential
50 Fabric of the Game Jumbo Jersey #
50 Fabric of the Game Jumbo Team
4 HRX
Red/Blue/Gold/Green/Black parallel versions

Our Break:
Each card is serially numbered.  The base set is /1849.  Collector’s will either need to open a lot of boxes or do lots of buying/trading to complete a base set of these.  The draw with this product is the rookie autographs (John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins), the chance at autographs and relics of stars such as Griffin, Kobe, Rose etc… and of course the HRX video cards.  This product also includes several retired legends such as Patrick Ewing, Scottie Pippen, Hakeem Olajuwon, John Stockton, Karl Malone, among others.  Here’s what we opened:

Base cards /1489 (16): Gerald Henderson, Carlos Boozer, Paul Pierce, Chris Paul, Paul Millsap, Mehmet Okur, Carmelo Anthony, Pau Gasol, Jameer Nelson, Gilbert Arenas, Danny Granger, Rodney Stuckey, Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, Richard Jefferson, Aaron Brooks


Red /499 (5): Brandon Jennings, Zach Randolph, Matt Barnes, Hedo Turkoglu, Richard Hamilton
Blue /299 (3): Pau Gasol, Chase Buddinger, Kevin Love



Red Materials /249 (3): Andrew Bogut, Tyreke Evans, Luis Scola


Green Fabric of the Game /299 (1): Rasheed Wallace


Rookie Autographs /599 (2): Landry Fields, Ed Davis (Redemption)

Impressions:

First, want to applaud the design on the rookie autographs.  They look sharp and having on-card signatures makes them appealing.  While our box didn’t contain the most highly sought after rookies (John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, Evan Turner, etc..) we did pull two solid rookies, one of which starts on a playoff team that looks like it could make a deep run this year (Fields).

Pulling even a base card of a superstar such as Lebron, Kobe, Durant, etc… would have been nice, but with a base set of 150 cards and the box containing only 16, this can’t be expected out of an average box.

While the big hits in this product provide an exciting pack-busting experience, the typical box won’t deliver an adequate return.


Wednesday Wax: 1999-00 Topps Series 2 Hobby

The Set:
1999-00 Topps Series 2
36 packs per box, 11 cards per pack
Series 2 base set contains 117 base cards, 10 rookies inserted 1 in 5, and 10 USA cards inserted 1 in 5
MVP Promo, 1 in 172 packs
All Matrix, 1 in 15 packs
Team Topps, 1 in 18 packs
Impact, 1 in 24 packs
Impact Refractor, 1 in 120 packs
21st Century, 1 in 27 packs
Own The Game, 1 in 44 packs
Autographs (Groups A, B), overall odds 1 in 98 packs

Our Break:
Without going in and counting, I am fairly certain we opened a complete set of base cards, while also seeing many, many duplicates.  We probably have close to 10 Danny Ferry base cards, so any Danny Ferry collectors, hit us up.  The orange bordered base set might be my least favorite Topps base set of all-time.  The action photos are nice (gotta love young Kobe hanging in the air pre-layup/dunk in the photo above), but who are we kidding, we opened this box for the inserts and a chance at a Topps Autograph (reasonably inserted at 1:98 packs, basically every third box).


’99 Draft Picks (7): Alexsandar Radojevic, William Avery, Cal Bowdler, Quincy Lewis, Dion Glover, Jeff Foster, Kenny Thomas (Most, if not all of the good rookies were in Series 1)

USA  Basketball Team Card (7): Kevin Garnett, Gary Payton, Steve Smith, Tim Hardaway, Tim Duncan, Jason Kidd, Tom Gugliotta


All Matrix (3): Shaquille O’Neal, Antoine Walker, Keith Van Horn


Team Topps (2): Reggie Miller, Grant Hill


21st Century (1): Jonathan Bender


Own The Game (1): Jason Kidd


Impact (1): Kobe Bryant

Impressions:

Fantastic value, beautiful inserts.  Our box looks like it contained pretty standard results for this product.  It was right on the odds for the inserts, didn’t hit on any of the higher odds inserts such as the Impact Refractors or the Autographs, but did pull several nice inserts that had lower odds (Shaq, Kobe).

The USA cards were interesting.  Who knew Tom Gugliotta played for Team USA?  Fun trivia fact there.

Pick up this box if you don’t want to break the bank (you can find a box for under $30), but still have a shot at some nice autographs and inserts.  Really can’t stress enough how great these insert sets are.  These types of cards are what is missing from today’s products.  The scans in this post don’t give an accurate picture of how nice these cards look.  Give me these over a game used card of Andres Nocioni any day (nothing personal, Andres- we actually could pull one of these in our next break, 10-11 Totally Certified).