Over the weekend I received a hobby box of 2010-2011 Playoff Contenders Patches basketball from Panini to review. I did the break live on UStream and a couple of people popped in to check out what was in the box and we had a few laughs.
I scanned all the inserts, parallels, and box hits so everyone can see what the cards look like and what you can pull from a hobby box. Each box contains 20 packs, 5 cards per pack, and 4 certified autographs. Not a bad ratio of autos to packs if you ask me.
First, here are the base cards which I happen to like. The design is not your typical action shot but an action shot on a static background with the "ticket stub" on the side. They kind of remind me of the old Fleer Authentix cards, which I also liked. The design is simple, yet different from what we have seen in the last couple of years so I think it works.
I'm not going to lie, I am sick of this pose on every Carlos Boozer card. I am fairly certain Panini could have drummed up another picture of this guy.
The base set is 100 cards, and in this box I got 81/100 plus one double. So if you are a set builder this is a great selling point.
Next up will be the Starting Blocks inserts, which also have a die-cut version that is serial numbered
Noah and Johnson
Hansbrough and George
Flynn and Johnson
Evans and Casspi
Young and Holiday die cut
One-Two Punch inserts
Gordon and Wallace
Harris and Lopez
Anthony and Nene
Rookie of the Year Contenders cards which have a base and die-cut version. The die-cut version is serial numbered to 99.
Season Ticket inserts which are die-cut cards, the gold lettering cards are serial numbered to 99.
The Panini Times, Place in History inserts, die-cut version is serial numbered to 49.
Andrew Bogut /49
Finally we have the hits. While I am not a fan of manufactured patches, Panini makes no mention of each box having 4 "dual" relic/autographs which I am happy about. The patches on these cards serve more to be something extra/something to enhance the look of the card without the "Tom Foolery" of the manufactured patch mess. Rather than stamping a giant logo, they take it a step further and give you a bright fabric logo.
I did end up with one redemption, which is kind of a disappointment when you pull one of those from any product. It has been redeemed and we shall wait to see how long it takes. I am still waiting on a redemption from Limited (Lamar Odom auto).
Joakim Noah auto /15 (I am pleased despite the fact that it's a redemption.)
The boxes right now are around $105 and with 4 autographs and a ton of inserts per box I think you do get a pretty good deal for the money. However.... if you aren't interested in collecting draft pick autos and would prefer to get veteran players autographs, this product isn't for you.
The only thing about this set that I dislike is the over use of the foil. Now, don't get me wrong you all know how much us women LOVE shiny cards (read: bite me) but basically every insert is like that and it really doesn't need to be. The die-cuts in foil would have been enough to still make this set visually appealing and worth the price point per box.
Some of the "shiny" cards in the scans look damaged for some reason or another, but in person they aren't. The way they look from the scans is that the edges are missing foil but that's not the case. All the cards were fine out of the packs, the edges look a little wavy on some and maybe that is what came through on the scans.
Overall, this is a really fun product if you enjoy pulling autos. This is also the perfect box to buy if you are a player collector because you have plenty of chances to hit an insert or serial numbered card of a guy you collect.