I hope you enjoyed the annual Mikey Awards from last month as much as I enjoyed writing them. It’s truly my favorite piece I write each year and so far at least, no manufacturer has canceled my direct accounts…yet.
I attended the Upper Deck Certified Diamond Dealer event in Orlando and am glad to share that it was an incredible event not just because they brought Barry Sanders and Patrick Roy (seemingly just for me) to meet, but because every card store should have gotten numerous ideas that should go a long way towards improving their businesses.
Yup, here I am meeting Patrick when I just happened to be wearing one of his jerseys.
There were UD Monumental Boxes available there. Each had five incredible Upper Deck Auethenticated memorabilia items inside. Check out what was inside this lucky shop owner’s box:
I also plan to be part of the upcoming Topps and Beckett/Panini/Leaf events which are both scheduled for February and if you care to get a glimpse of some of the fun and possible card announcements, feel free to follow me on Twitter at @mikesstadiumsc.
But since you’re really here to enjoy what’s rolling out the door at Colorado’s Best Card Shop, here’s what I can’t keep in stock these days –
1) 2017 Panini Contenders NFL – Seemingly the old standard is back for another year of domination. With the standard 5-6 autographed cards per box with one on card signature, collectors once again are digging this brand.
With all the injuries to the rookie class, there was some concern before it released, but even in spite of Contenders Optic being announced, it is well above cost on the wholesale market and multiple boxes are being sold daily in spite of it having been on the market for about a month now.
DeShawn, Christian and Leonard all seemingly have great staying power in spite of one not making it through the season and the others not making it to the Super Bowl.
2) 2017 Bowman Draft Picks & Prospects MLB – BDP&P is one of those interesting releases where I usually see a strong run out of the gate and then it slows down until the next “can’t miss” play starts not missing. This year, there has been no slow down and so far at least the Jumbo version is moving significantly better than the Super Jumbo version. I’m not sure if price is a major determination, but the Jumbos with three autographs per box seem to be the way to go over the Supers, which have one autographed card in each pack.
Already prospects like Royce Lewis, Brendan McKay, MacKenzie Moore, Austin Beck and others have had singles go well into the four-digit range and here’s to hoping that the interest in them stays right where it is for some time.
3) 17/18 SP Game Used NHL – For the second straight year, Upper Deck has employed the six card per pack style instead of the multiple packs per box format and for the second straight year, it is moving incredibly well. While Brock Boeser did not come into the league with as much fanfare as Connor McDavid and Auston Matthews did the past two years, his emergence as an impact rookie is softening the blow of two of the top rookies not having autographs in this or any UD NHL release.
The Draft Day Marks rookie autographed lettermen in particular have not only been plentiful at my shop but have helped inspire box and even case purchases. Of course the addition of possible autographed cards from Gretzky, Matthews, Yzerman, Selanne, Crosby, Stamkos, Kane, MacKinnon and more do not hurt either.
4) 2018 Leaf Best Of Sports Mixed Sports – Some people hope to come back in their next lives as a world-class athlete, others aspire for political glory. My hopes are a bit simpler and possibly realistic as I would like to be the single
card buyer for and “Best Of” release offered by Leaf. Most of the “Best Of” products are single sport specific, but in this instance the four major sports are accompanied by boxing, soccer and other sports (probably since there is no checklist).
I recently opened up three packs for one of my collectors who could not make it into the shop and found a cool David Robinson autographed relic, a Rocky Marciano graded single from the 1950s and a PSA 7 1968 Topps Mickey Mantle. Boxes are in the $170 range and include a buyback single paired up with a Leaf Insert card of an impressive player from the Leaf stable and others.
5) 17/18 Panini Revolution NBA – Yeah, this one caught me a little bit by surprise. The last few years, Revolution has been a real challenge release for me mostly I believe because it is one of the very few releases each year that does not offer the guarantee of either an autograph or relic in each box. Sure 2017/18 releases are enjoying a very extended honeymoon period thanks to some impact rookies and I went a little deeper than I had in previous years with it, but I did not expect the case breaking fever that has come with Revolution.
The “old school” shop owner in me is encouraged that collectors are finding favor with a release that does not exclusively rely on a bevy of autos and relics. The Showstoppers, Vortex, Galactic, and Liftoff insert sets and the harder to find parallels of them seem to be performing as well if not better than the possible signed versions. While I don’t think we’re going to forget how cool autos are (and yes there are six signed cards per 16 box master case), it is fun to fly through boxes without two, three or four hits per.
I’m already looking ahead to 1/31 when 2018 Topps Series 1 MLB hits as well as meeting up again with my hobby brothers and sisters both in Arizona with Topps as well as Texas with Beckett. Yes, I do let this little hobby rule my life, but I happen to love it and being able to share it with you all is just the little LCS cherry on top.
Mike Fruitman owns Mike’s Stadium Sportscards in Aurora, CO. His column focuses on what products are selling best in hobby shops. He’s got thousands of cards for sale on COMC.com under the ID cardmn5150. 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]