The Beckett Blog


Upper Deck takes aim at fairway with new releases by Chris Olds
January 31, 2011, 8:59 pm
Filed under: Golf, NHL, Upper Deck | Tags: , , , ,

By Chris Olds | Editor

Upper Deck has its sights set on a return to the golf world sometime soon and a pair of future products will include a golf card first and a big batch of Tiger Woods.

Those are things that golf fans — who have been without a set of their own since 2005 — will undoubtedly appreciate.

Up first, is a first — Bubba Watson‘s first Upper Deck golf card. It will appear in 2011 Goodwin Champions, which will arrive later this year.

Upper Deck’s Sports Marketing and Social Media Manager Chris Carlin had additional details.

“We’ve reached a deal with the 2011 Farmers Insurance Open winner for image rights and autographs,” he said. “That’s kind of big news as many were wondering if we would ever produce Goodwin Champions again. The last Goodwin Champions set had a lot of very unique and innovative trading card inserts sets, so we are very excited to bring that product back with even more bells and whistles that will be announced in the coming months.

“Watson’s first autograph cards will appear in 2011 Upper Deck Ultimate Champions, a cross-sport product with a high-end look and feel.”

The second item — a whole lot of Tiger — can be seen after the jump.

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First Look: 2010 Upper Deck World of Sports by Tracy Hackler

Upper Deck officials recently unveiled preliminary information and images for the company’s newest multisport product, Upper Deck World of Sports, due out in December.

As you might imagine, the product’s key calling cards will revolve around longtime company exclusives Michael Jordan, LeBron James and Tiger Woods. But the product also is slated to includes stars from such sports as baseball, hockey, soccer, mixed martial arts, extreme sports, Olympic sports and even lacrosse.

The 400-card base set is bolstered such insert sets as Athletes of the World Signatures, Sports National Dual, Triple and Quad Signatures, All Sport Apparel and Clear Competitors.

In addition to including a stable of traditional signature inclusions (Jordan, James, Woods, Sidney Crosby, Wayne Gretzky), the preliminary World of Sports autograph checklist also calls for the likes of Pete Rose, figure skaters Nancy Kerrigan and Sasha Cohen and MMA legend Randy Couture.

Product promotional literature promises an average of two autographs and one memorabilia card per box (and one multi-signed card per case).

Stay tuned to Beckett.com for additional information on this product.

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Famous Fabrics Second Edition Impresses — Without a License by Tracy Hackler

What In The Game patriarch Dr. Brian Price lacks in big-time league licensing, he more than makes up for by continuing to push the creative envelope when it comes to high-end multisport, multi-generational products.

For the latest case in point, look no further than Famous Fabrics Second Edition, a simply majestic memorabilia-card marvel from Price’s Creative Cardboard Concepts label due to drop next week at the National Sports Collectors Convention in Baltimore.

Devoid of player photography and the always-welcomed stamp of approval that player and league licensing affords, the product manages to sparkle anyway thanks to the historic nature of its content and the innovative high points of its development.

The checklist alone is arguably the most comprehensive ever assembled in terms of sports and eras touched. No less than 20 sports or disciplines are represented (the big four plus mixed martial arts, golf, boxing, soccer, horse racing, poker, professional wrestling, auto racing, bicycling, gymnastics, tennis, volleyball, swimming, ice skating, coaching, announcing and even dare-deviling). The fact that Price and his people even managed to acquire memorabilia for such a far-reaching roster is a commendable feat in and of itself.

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Upper Deck Commemorates Tiger’s Return with New Memorabilia by Tracy Hackler

As one of the only companies that stood by Tiger Woods during the scandal-laden treachery of his last four months, Upper Deck was understandably thrilled by his ballyhooed return to competitive golf at this week’s Masters.

Woods’ fired a like-he-never-left 4-under 68 in Thursday’s opening round that left him just two strokes off the lead — and likely added a good share of names to the waiting list for a handful of new Upper Deck Authenticated Woods items.

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Upper Deck maintains its support of Tiger Woods by Chris Olds
February 19, 2010, 2:45 pm
Filed under: Golf, Upper Deck | Tags: , , , , ,

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

With Tiger Woods’ first public comments about his transgressions on Friday, there will be plenty of discussion about Woods’ future with sponsors and with other business ties.

His largest tie that collectors would be concerned with — his deal with Upper Deck as a company spokesman — remains secure as the company will continue to support the golfer.

“Upper Deck continues to stand by Tiger Woods and wishes him all the best on his road to recovery,” Upper Deck Spokesman Terry Melia said in a statement on Friday. “Our exclusive autographed memorabilia contract with Tiger remains intact.”

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball and Beckett Graded Card Investor. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at colds@beckett.com.



Sneak Preview Gallery: 2010 Famous Fabrics First Edition by Tracy Hackler

Dr. Brian Price — the Canadian sports card manufacturer who’s delivered memorable products from such memorable brands as In The Game, Be A Player and Sportkings — recently unveiled a whole host of images from Famous Fabrics First Edition, the newest product from his newest company, Creative Cardboard Concepts.

True to the name of its front company, Famous Fabrics delivers a creative, multisport twist on the memorabilia card concept by presenting an extremely limited product with seemingly countless unique themes and pairings.

With an overall production run of just 400 10-pack boxes, every one-card pack of Famous Fabrics includes a slabbed memorabilia or cut-signature card limited to either nine copies (Silver) or one copy (Gold).

Due out Feb. 24, Famous Fabrics incorporates legends from a bevy of sports, including baseball, basketball, football, hockey, boxing, golf, track and field, horse racing, soccer, swimming and more. Such a wide talent pool helps the product shine on poignant themed inserts such as  The Year, Rookie of the Year, MVP and Cityscapes. In addition, Famous Fabrics includes a veritable locker room full of memorabilia types, including jerseys, trunks, bats, skates, cleats, hats and gloves.

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Is there a right way to do sticker autographs? by Chris Olds

TRISTAR's new line of autographed Total Nonstop Action wrestling photos appears to use stickers. Does it make sense? Perhaps.

There’s no question that the sticker autograph is a sticking point for many a collector.

They often loathe them because they want something that someone held signed, because they want an autograph that can accentuate the image that it is affixed to, because they want a signature that is not cut off by the edge of a sticker that’s smaller than the item it’s affixed to.

But collectors also don’t want to wait on redemption cards — an inevitable byproduct of on-card signatures. But collectors also don’t want to receive cards with dinged corners, either. (This just in, many athletes don’t treasure corners on their cards as much as you do … ) This, in turn, has spawned the letter patch autographs, the manufactured logo autographs, the Sweet Spot autographs and so on …

There are advantages for companies to get stickers (and non-card items) signed — primarily pertaining to the issues above — but it’s also one of asset management. What does a company do when there are cards left over after redemptions are fulfilled (something that also costs money)? They’ve cost the company something — yet aren’t necessarily usable in a future product.

Stickers or other types of autographs on the other hand can be used later down the line if a lineup changes or a deadline is missed or if redemptions go unfulfilled — something that saves the company money, which is more important than ever as a shrinking industry continues to weather a poor economy in a world where costs for autographs aren’t shrinking. (Even though they probably should be.) Every company uses them — and it’s become en vogue to tout when they aren’t, likely when it’s time to move some products.

So, we have to ask — is there a right way to do sticker autographs?

Read more after the jump.

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