A new season is underway, but the hockey card calendar still has one foot in the last one. 2012-13 Upper Deck The Cup hockey cards will release October 22, according to the company. Collectors of high end products salivate over the company’s signature hockey product, which returns for its eighth year. Upper Deck’s Chris Carlin indicated this week that The Cup would have its smallest print run ever.
The Cup is normally released in late summer.
“It is a real challenge to get this much hard-signed content in a product which is why it was so late this season,” the company stated on its Facebook page in response to a question from a customer about the 2012-13 dating on a product being released during the 2013-14 season. Upper Deck has been making a strong effort to avoid redemption cards for autographs and hasn’t been shy about delaying product releases to do so.
Each unopened tin will contain five cards including two autographed patches, one of which will be of a rookie, one or two autograph, memorabilia or parallel cards and one or two base cards. There will also be a two-card bonus pack of Upper Deck’s Ultimate Collection cards featuring one hit and one base card.
The autograph checklist will include a number of hockey legends, some of whom haven’t signed for a while. Wayne Gretzky signed numerous cards for the product recently and his signatures will be among those pulled in The Cup. Other signers include Bobby Orr, Mario LeMieux, Alex Ovechkin, Mark Messier, Jonathan Toews, Peter Forsberg, Pavel Bure, Mats Sundin and Theo Fleury as well as several top rookies. See a photo gallery below.
Autographed Monumental Patch Booklets will be among the major hits with veteran patches numbered 1-1 and game worn with rookies numbered 1/3 and made of jersey patches from the NHLPA Rookie Photo Shoot.
There are 39 rookie auto patch cards in The Cup, 36 of which are numbered to 249 and three others are numbered to 99.
Rookie Revolution Booklet cards will be among the major pulls, serial numbered to “far fewer than 99” according to Carlin. There will be one of them packed in approximately every 30 tins.
New subsets this year include Brilliance Autographs, Autographed Monumental Patches, Notable Nameplates and NHL Shield Book cards.
The wholesale price of 2012-13 Upper Deck The Cup hasn’t changed from last year’s level according to Upper Deck and it remains to be seen whether the lower print run might cause secondary market prices to jump.
See the 2012-13 Cup checklist below and you can track eBay listings here.