Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Preview: 2010-11 Panini NBA Season Update

Schedule Release Date: July 10, 2011
Box Configuration: 24 pack per box, 10 cards per pack (If it is the same pack out as last year)
SRP: $72/box

Box Break:
1 Autograph card
3 Memorabilia cards
14 Additional Inserts

My Thoughts:
Panini has taken a step forward by creating a set that utilizes on-card autographs, more than 1000 on-card autographs to be exact though there are some sticker autographs still in the set. This is something that card companies need to continue, the sticker autographs are blight to the hobby. I also like the Green Week relic cards (the idea, not the design) because many of the teams use a special jersey during the week to celebrate environmental awareness. Does it seem odd that some NBA teams create special jerseys to use for a week only to raise awareness for environmental protection?

Sadly almost all of the insert designs that Panini previewed are horrible. The Rookie Challenge auto-memorabilia cards are all over the place and the Green Week and All-Star relics are a complete fright. Honestly, even though the preview images are of prime patch versions not even a cool patch can save the card.

This is a case where a bargain price point ($2.99/pack) gets you a bargain price design. The sad thing is that if you read the comments being left on Panini’s blog apparently some collectors are being blinded by the use of prime patches in the preview pictures like these collectors assumes that every hit will be a prime patch. I can guarantee that with some of these inserts being numbered to #/799 there will be plenty of plain white swatches, will these same collectors be praising the “Sick designs” or will they just be sick of the designs?

One of the biggest draw of the set, the Dual & Triple Auto Rookies, is sticker autographs. You would think that if any insert contained on-card autographs that this would be the one Panini ensured was the one. I can understand the difficult logistics of getting two or three players to autograph a single card let alone up to #/99 (Dual) or #/49 (Triple) cards but if this was the intent from the set inception then Panini should have made it happen.

On-card autographs

Green Week jersey relics

Throwback Threads

Dual and Triple Rookie Autos

Horrible designs

Dual and Triple Rookie Autos are sticker autographs

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