Hello “What’s Hot” followers. I’m still licking my wounds a little bit from the Broncos loss in the Super Bowl. Fortunately collectors in the Mile High city have been soothing themselves one box at a time at my card shop.
Here’s a look at the Top 5 current hottest sports card products.
1) Starting things off on the Top 5 is 2014 Topps 1 MLB. Collectors are once again busting regular and jumbo boxes with great enthusiasm. Sure it is a base brand, but that didn’t keep Topps form inserting autographs of greats like Sandy Koufax, Johnny Bench, Reggie Jackson, Yasiel Puig, David Ortiz, Clayton Kershaw, Greg Maddux, Miguel Cabrera and enough other stars to make you sometimes feel like you are opening Topps Tribute, not Topps 1.
It is not all about the autos with 1/1 base set parallels, low numbered silk collections and enough inserts to choke a herd of Broncos…err…horses.
2) Coming in at #2 is 2013 Panini Contenders NFL. Sure football took more time to heat up this year than a slow cooker left outside in an Alaska winter, but by the end of the year, Eddie Lacy, Giovani Bernard, Kennan Allen, Montee Ball and many others emerged to add some late season spice.
Boxes once again offer six autographs per box instead of the advertised five and now that the short print list is out, listers can finally stop calling every card a SP? on eBay. Some of the 1/1 Championship Tickets and Golden Tickets are up for auction now and for the price of five 60” name brand TV’s you can take home the Matt Barkley 1/1.
3) Spot #3 goes to 2013-14 SP Game Used NHL. Upper Deck and Panini have learned that getting collector’s one autograph, one relic or one autographed relic in a $25 pack helps drive sales and this beast delivers once again. With possible autographs from superstars Wayne Gretzky, Patrick Roy, Patrick Kane and more along with rookie autographs from Nathan MacKinnon, Nail Yakupov, Alex Ganchenyuk it is no wonder that we have gone through three cases already.
Being a high end release, Upper Deck did a great job with the relics with chances at Net Relics from both the 2013 Stanley Cup Finals and the 2012 NHL Winter Classic, 1/1 NHL Shield relics, Inked Sweaters and more. You do not have to have the #1 draft pick in your local arena to be selling this if you have any puckheads in your stores.
4) 2013 Panini Black NFL garners the #4 spot with the fattest pack in the business coming back for a second year of success. Boxes once again offer five autographs or relic cards and even the commons have a fan following. We did a case break over the weekend and we saw more monsters than the whole True Blood series.
All the NFL rookies you saw listed above made the cut and are joined by veterans like Richard Sherman, Russell Wilson, RGIII, Andrew Luck and other non-rookies. The one per box metal cards are a sharp addition and the Shadowbox signed cards don’t look bad either.
5) Rounding out this installment of the Top 5 is a holdover from November. 2013 Bowman Draft Picks and Prospects has really grown up in the past few weeks, and seems to be enjoying the annual pre pitchers and catchers bump. It could not have happened at a better time since for the longest time, my six cases of regular boxes were around so long that I was close to naming them.
I will admit that I have not read an issue of Baseball America in quite some time, but it is hard to not know names such as Byron Buxton, Carlos Correa, Mr. Puig, Austin Meadows and others.
Looking through the product description, there appear to be 19 different 1/1 sets. I’m not sure if that is a record, but nobody seems to be holding it against Topps for inserting them all.
Well, there you have it, the Top 5 list for this month. Looking ahead, I might be willing to say that I would not be surprised to see Topps Supreme NFL, Upper Deck SPX NHL, Topps Museum Collection NFL and Topps Tribute MLB on the next list I put together.]
Mike Fruitman owns Mike’s Stadium Sportscards in Aurora, Colo. You can read his column here every week (or close to it), focusing on what products are selling best in hobby shops. See his eBay listings here. Enjoy new arrivals and big hits from Mike’s on Twitter. Mike’s is always looking for more friends on Facebook and you can email him at [email protected]