As the NBA season pushes deeper into its second half, Panini America on Wednesday released 2014-15 Donruss Basketball. Utilizing many of the Donruss designs and associated names from the brand that debuted back the 1980s, Donruss is a mix of past and present.
The timing of the release gives collectors a chance to get some of the first cards of rookie players, like Elfird Payton and Andrew Wiggins, featuring in-game action photography. Several traded players also appear in a new uniform, like Rajon Rondo of the Dallas Mavericks.
The backs might remind collectors of Donruss baseball cards from the 80s and early 90s, with the card number in a ball up the top left corner and with similar positions and fonts for the player name and statistics. That design was also used a few years ago when Panini first introduced Donruss basketball.
There are 200 base cards in the set but a collector able to get all versions of any one card will be able to fill up a 9-pocket page. The base cards have eight parallels, including a Black Press Proof 1/1. The other parallel versions are Season Stat Line, Career Stat Line, Years in the League Stat, Purple Press Proof, Blue Press Proof, Silver Press Proof and Gold Press Proof. They all have limited print runs, with Gold numbered to 10. The inserts in Donruss also have numerous parallels.
Rookie Autographs and Rookie Autographs Die-Cuts are among the hits, while the Rated Rookies Signatures Patches will likely be a more expensive card to acquire. These feature a very large autograph and have the “Rated Rookie” logo that many collectors know.
Elite Status Die-Cuts is an insert set of 100 cards. Collectors missing the Timeless Treasures cards, which used to be a set by itself also, can look to Donruss for Timeless Treasures Jersey Autographs and Timeless Treasures Prime Jersey Autographs. Those inserts come with a jersey piece and a sticker autograph.
Scoring Kings, Court Kings and Production Line are insert sets with names collectors know. They will also know some of the past players like Allen Iverson and Adrian Dantley who are in Scoring Kings, as well as current players like Dirk Nowitzki and Kevin Durant.
Box prices are falling at around $65 with 24 packs per box and 8 cards per pack. According to Panini, three of the cards in the box will have an autograph or a memorabilia piece. Autographs appear to be on stickers. There will also be three parallel cards. Expect to find 24 Metalized cards and 48 inserts per box.
You can see 2014-15 Donruss Basketball boxes, singles, sets and lots on eBay here.