Saturday, April 20, 2013

Preview: 2012-13 Leaf Metal Basketball

The other day Leaf previewed their new Matrix technology, an etched refractor like coating that gives the card an original appearance. The first set that will include Matrix inserts will be the 2012-13 Leaf Metal Basketball set, which is scheduled for a May 21 release. The set will be made up of retired players as well as a selection of young/up and coming players.

Each $180 box will include 5 packs (2 cards/pack) and each pack will include one on-card autograph and one insert. Some of the names included on the autograph checklist include retired players like Patrick Ewing, Magic Johnson, Shaq and Karl Malone and young players like potential ROY Damian Lillard.

The autograph insert list is made up of a nice variety to keep it interesting and includes; base autographs, jumbo patches autographs, Hall of Fame Inductions, Nicknames and Faces of the Game. There are also colored and prismatic parallels of certain inserts like the base autos and HOF Inductions though I am not certain if they are numbered or the break down. Valiant and Hoop Matrix are part of the insert list too, though those are not autographed.

Being an unlicensed product all logo and team names have been removed and in some cases it is noticeable, like with the Magic Johnson base auto. A number of players are pictures in either college jerseys or foreign jerseys when applicable. I noticed that Lillard was pictured in his Portland Trail Blazers uniform on the Hoop Matrix card that Leaf used during the announcement this past week but he is pictured in his Weber State uniform in the Metal Basketball announcement. I am not sure if this is an oversight or if he has different cards in the release.

Personally I like the release, the box price is more than I am willing to pay but I may buy a pack or two (roughly $36/pack) or pick up some singles when they hit the market. There are some very big names included in the set with Patrick Ewing leading the way. Apparently he appears in less than 20 autograph checklists and with his last auto being released about 10 years ago so you figure there will be people chasing his cards. I think Pippen, Cousey and Russell will also be big draws.

I am disappointed that Leaf chose to use a picture of Shawn Kemp in a Cleveland Cavaliers uniform instead of a Sonics uniform. The Reign Man is best known for his Supersonics years… and for having a ton of kids.

Autograph Inserts:
 Autographed Jumbo Patch, Base Autographs (Base, Green, Red, Black, Super Prismatic), Faces of the Game, Hall of Fame Inductions (Green, Red) and Nicknames

Base Inserts:
Hoop Matrix and Valiant

No comments:

Post a Comment