Saturday, January 28, 2012

Panini Scores Big With The Signing Of Gordie Howe

This is big!  Well... actually it’s HUGE!

Panini America has just reached a multi-year trading card agreement with Gordie Howe, one of the greatest hockey player of all time.  Autograph and memorabilia trading cards of Howe will appear in Panini's officially licensed hockey products for the first time.  This is on the heals of In The Game’s January 19th announcement that Howe would be appearing on their cards too.

What is so big or huge about this?  Well Howe has been one of the three marquee players featured on Upper Deck cards for a long time along with the Great One, Wayne Gretzky and Booby Orr.  That Hat Trick exclusive seemed to be a cornerstone of the Upper Deck Hockey cards empire, one that appeared to be unbreakable.  With both ITG and Panini signing Howe, there will be plenty of competition which leads to more choices for collectors and that is always a good thing. 

The is no word from Upper Deck yet about any of this so one has to guess that Howe will still sign and appear on cards for them, just not on an exclusive basis anymore.

In all likelihood, Gretzky and Orr will follow at some point.  I’ve suspected that Panini would break Upper Deck’s exclusive back in December of last year.  Small indications of that started popping up on Panini’s blog, The Knight’s Lance, there was something was in the air.  First, a casual reference to The Great One in a post about 2011-12 Crown Royale Hockey using the phrase “Like Gretzky on a breakaway.”  Then there was the addition of Tim Trout, former Beckett Hockey Guru, who was coming on board as the new assistant brand manager for Hockey. (conspiracy theory fans will note there were both LA Kings and NY Rangers Uniforms strategically placed over Trout’s left shoulder as he explained on video what he would be doing in his new job for Panini.)
Howe, a 1972 Hall of Fame inductee, is third on the NHL all-time leading scorer list with 1,767 points.  He played 25 seasons, was a 23-time NHL All-Star and 4 time winner of the Stanley Cup.  He also won 6 Art Ross Trophies and 6 Hart Trophies. Howe is the only player in NHL history to play in five different decades.

Friday, January 27, 2012

There’s More Gold To Find In 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1 And This Time It’s 14K Solid Gold Cards

You knew this had to happen.  After announcements about the Gold Rush wrapper redemption program and the Gold Tickets good for Gold Infused MLB Baseballs signed by Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Ken Griffey, Jr., there was still one untapped golden idea left.  Today Topps announced they have produced 16 cards that are made of pure 14K solid gold. 

These “Solid Golden Greats” cards are one of ones and feature legendary players like Lou Gehrig, Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron.  They have been slabbed by Beckett Grading Services with identification and an exclusive Topps logo.  

Redemption cards for the corresponding “Solid Golden Greats” cards will be inserted exclusively in hobby boxes of 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1. The release date for 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1 is next week.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Topps Brings Back Prime 9 Redemptions With The Home Run Legends

First there was the Gold Rush. Then 10... make that 20 Gold Tickets.  Now we have the return of the Prime 9 Redemption Program. 

Last year we had week-to-week announcements for the Prime 9 program, which featured some of the best players at each of the 9 fielding positions.  This year it is all about swinging lumber.  The 9 players on this year’s cards will all be Home Run Legends and will feature sluggers such as Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron and Mickey Mantle.

Inside Hobby and Jumbo boxes of 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1 there will be randomly inserted Prime 9 Redemption Cards at a rate of two cards per box.

Beginning on February 13th, Topps will announce the “Prime 9 Home Run Legend of the Week”.  If you have the corresponding Prime 9 Redemption card for that week you can bring the card to your local participating HTA store and redeem it for an exclusive limited edition Topps Chrome Refractor.

In addition, like last year, the back of each redemption card functions as a sweepstakes entry.  If you fill out the entry form on the back before you redeem the cards, the storeowner will submit that entry to Topps.  You could win the Grand Prize, which is a VIP package for two to attend the 2012 MLB Home Run Derby.

We will have full coverage again this year of the Prime 9 player announcements so be sure to check in once the program starts.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Total Of 20 Topps Gold Tickets To Be Found... Ummm... Make That 19.

Earlier today we announced that 10 Gold Tickets for a Gold Infused MLB Baseball autographed by Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Ken Griffey, Jr.  We failed to mention that there are an additional 10 Gold Tickets that have been distributed to Local Hobby Shops to be part of the Gold Rush incentive program.  This brings the total number of Triple autographed Gold MLB Baseballs to 20.

The first Ticket has made an appearance.  A picture was posted on Twitter with the first ticket to be seen that currently resides at Northwest Sportscards.  If you aren't on Twitter, get on it!   If you don't follow us here @AllAboutCards or @toppscards, get on it!  And once you do you can take a look at our retweet of the first Gold Ticket.

Topps Adds A Wonka Of A Giveaway. 10 Gold Tickets Placed In 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1 Hobby Boxes.

Paging Veruca Salt, it is Gold Ticket Time.

Today Topps announced another element to the Gold themed year for their flagship Baseball Card Set.  Hidden inside of Hobby Boxes of 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1 are 10 Gold Tickets.  Each ticket is good for a Gold-Infused official Major League Baseball autographed by three players you may know, Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Ken Griffey, Jr.

That’s right, one ball, three signatures from the number 2, 4 and 5 All Time MLB Home Run Hitters.  Add this to the Gold Rush Wrapper redemption announced yesterday and you can see there will be quite a few special giveaways by Topps this year.

But there is still more.  Check back tomorrow for another announcement.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Complete Details For The 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1 Gold Rush Wrapper Redemption Program

 Diamonds are so last year.  This year it is all about gold.

The Golden Giveaway, Golden Moments inserts and real Gold cards are all a part of the  2012 Topps Baseball Series of cards.  But for the soon to be released Series 1, Topps is offering a gold themed wrapper redemption program.

For every 50 Hobby wrappers or 14 HTA Jumbo wrappers of 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1 you send to Topps, you will receive a 5-card cello pack of exclusive Gold Rush cards.  There are 50 cards to collect in all.  In addition, bonus autographed cards have been randomly inserted into packs from signers that include Willie Mays, Adrian Gonzalez, Sandy Koufax, Nelson Cruz, Albert Pujols, Albert Belle, Dennis Eckersley and more.

But you will have to be quick about it.  The exclusive wrapper redemption program will be available only for the month of February.  Packaged wrappers sent to Topps must be post marked no later than February 29th, 2012.

Wrappers should be sent to:

Gold Rush
PO Box 2008
Duryea, PA 18642

You may and are encouraged to group all of your wrappers into 50 hobby or 14 HTA bundles and send them together in one package.  Topps will fulfill all wrappers submitted until supplies last.

Monday, January 23, 2012

A Card Featuring Albert Pujols In His Angels Uniform Has Been Added To 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1

The release of 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1 is 9 days away.  In addition to the Golden Giveaway, Prime 9 and an exclusive wrapper redemption program, 2012 Topps Baseball Series 1 will feature the first card of Albert Pujols in his Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim uniform.

A limited quantity of card number 331 with Pujols decked out in his new threads will appear in packs as well as an updated card for Jose Reyes, card number 332, in his new Marlins uniform.

Both cards will appear again in Series 2 in full quantities and with updated photography.