Panini America has reached an exclusive multi-year trading card agreement with Anthony Davis, the No. 1 overall pick of the New Orleans Hornets in the 2012 NBA Draft. Davis is the fourth No. 1 overall pick to sign exclusively with Panini America since 2009. Past number one overall picks include Blake Griffin, John Wall and Kyrie Irving.
The agreement grants Panini America exclusive rights to produce autographed trading cards of the future NBA star. Previously, Panini had announced that it had signed exclusive deals with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (#2 Overall, Charlotte Bobcats), Thomas Robinson (#5 Overall, Sacramento Kings), Harrison Barnes (#7 Overall, Golden State Warriors), Andre Drummond (#9 Overall, Detroit Pistons), Austin Rivers (#10 Overall, New Orleans Hornets), John Henson (#14 Overall, Milwaukee Bucks) and Jared Sullinger (#21 Overall, Boston Celtics).
In all, Panini has now confirmed autographed trading card deals with 54 of the 60 NBA Draft Picks, as well as 12 undrafted NBA rookies – ensuring that all of the NBA’s key rookies will be featured as part of the Panini Double Rookie Class.
A talented crop of 2012 rookies will join key members of the 2011 NBA Draft class, including 2011-12 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year Kyrie Irving, Derrick Williams, Kenneth Faried will be part of what the company is calling "basketball’s first Double Rookie Card class". The class will debut with the launch of 2012-13 NBA HOOPS which will be available at retail and hobby shops nationwide on Wednesday, August 15.
The leading scorer (14.2 ppg) at the University of Kentucky and the leading shot-blocker (4.7 per game) in the nation, Davis was widely considered the best player in the country as a freshman last season. He led the Wildcats to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship title while earning National Player of the Year honors and SEC awards for Player of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year.
“Anthony Davis is a tremendous player – not only on the basketball court but also in the world of officially licensed trading cards – and his impact on our complete line of 2012-13 NBA products will be substantial,” said Panini America CEO Mark Warsop.