Training camps won’t open for a few more weeks, but hoopheads are seeing products start to roll off the presses.
The two greatest dynasties in NBA history – the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers – made their collective way back to the NBA Finals this past season and staged a fiercely fought six-game series. Finals MVP Paul Pierce led the Celtics to their 17th team title, but Lakers superstar (and league MVP) Kobe Bryant didn’t make it easy. It had been 21 years since the two powers met to decide the championship and Upper Deck has made sure to make the most of this hard-court reunion with its just-released 2008-09 Upper Deck Basketball launch.
The set will include “NBA Dynasty” inserts celebrating legendary players from the Celtics, Lakers and Bulls, this season’s Upper Deck release merges past and present. Inserts of Celtic greats such as John Havlicek, Bill Russell, K.C. Jones and Bob Cousy, join Laker legends like George Mikan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson and James Worthy and Bulls stars Michael Jordan, Dennis Rodman and John Paxson will be part of the set.
Also among the chase cards are “Star Signings,” a collection of autograph cards spotlights current stars like LeBron James, Jason Kidd, Chris Paul and Carmelo Anthony; “Kobe Bryant Heroes,” is an autographed parallel collection numbered to five; “Emulation Dual” memorabilia cards show such outstanding pairings as Tim Duncan/David Robinson, Ben Wallace/Dennis Rodman, Tracy McGrady/George Gervin, LeBron James/Julius Erving and Larry Bird and Ray Allen.
At least 18 Star Rookies will be included in every 16-pack box, with at least three of them being short-printed. First-year standouts include: Michael Beasley (Heat), O.J. Mayo (Grizzlies), Derrick Rose (Bulls), Jerryd Bayless (Blazers) and Brandon Rush (Pacers).
“Besides finding three memorabilia cards and one autograph card per box, collectors can also find ‘StarQuest’ cards in every box that are good for points and prizes at www.upperdeckkids.com,” said Bill Beaman, Upper Deck’s basketball brand manager.
Upper Deck’s 2008-09 Basketball carries a suggested retail price of $4.99 per 20-card pack with 16 packs per box. Boxes are already being sold on eBay.
o Star Signings
o Star Signings Gold // (# to 25)
o Kobe Bryant Heroes Auto // (# to 5)
o UD Game Jersey
o Emulation Dual Memorabilia
o UD Game Jersey Patch
o Emulation Dual Memorabilia Patch
Inserts and Parallels
o Bulls Dynasty
o Lakers Dynasty
o Celtics Dynasty
o Kobe Bryant Heroes
o Electric Court Base Set Parallel
o Electric Court UD Legends Parallel
o Electric Court Star Rookies Parallel
o Starquest Black
Regular Cards and Rookies
o Base Set – 200 Cards
o UD Legends
o Star Rookies
o Star Rookies SP