I’m sure many of you are aware of the huge prices being paid for 1986 Fleer Basketball PSA 10’s, but this one blew me away. There were two Johnny Moore, #76 in the set, PSA 10’s that sold over the weekend on eBay for $15,103.00 and $14,329.00 respectively. I took a look at the PSA population report and only 35 have been graded gem mint by them, making it the lowest number of any card in the set.
There are many other “commons” in the set with populations not too far off from the Johnny Moore, but they don’t seem to command the kind of prices that the Moore does. The next lowest amount of PSA 10 grades are #67 Jeff Malone and #132 Checklist. There have been several recent sales of the checklist ranging from $6,999.00 to $8.100.00. You’ll also notice how a BGS 9.5 closing price is compared to a PSA in the picture below.
Recent Jeff Malone sales have ranged from $,1500.00 to $2,400.00. It makes sense to me that the checklist would carry a premium for two reasons. 1. It’s the last card in the set and likely could have had rubber band damage from kids putting them around their cards. 2. Many were likely marked with ink by set builders. These are two reasons you see checklist cards and first/last cards in sets carrying a premium throughout the years.
I’m not well versed enough to understand why the Johnny Moore commands such a high premium other than it being the card with the least amount of PSA 10’s. Possibly tough centering, print marks or something similar. I just don’t know.
What I do know is that there are treasures in 1986 Fleer Basketball beyond Jordan and the other big name rookies that have been fueled by the PSA pop report. Opening a wax pack of this product doesn’t seem as crazy to me anymore after seeing some of the prices on graded common cards. I knew this was going on in vintage sets, but I really didn’t realize how crazy 1986 Fleer Basketball prices had gotten. I suppose 1986 is “vintage” now too. Doesn’t seem that way for someone that was 10 years old at the time though.
Last week I placed an order with Dave & Adam’s Card World who I frequently shop with. I ordered a case of 2014 Topps Update Baseball mega boxes and 48 2013 Topps Update retail jumbo rack packs (I’ll post results of this breaks once I open them). It was a typical order for me. I tend to lean more towards discounted retail product for set building. I made sure to spend at least $200 to get the free 3-day UPS shipping, a great promotion of theirs.
Another great promotion that they have is a free gift with every order. It’s nothing amazing, usually your choice of several different retail products. The choices get better as your order total increases. Since I typically spend around $200 to $300 per order, the free gift is around $4 to $10 in value. On this occasion, I chose a pack of 2014 Upper Deck 25h Anniversary cards.
2014 Upper Deck 25th Anniversary packs were given out at the Industry Summit that year. The Industry Summit is a yearly event where manufacturers interface with retailers. All the heavy hitters give presentations and have giveaways such as this pack. Since this event is exclusive, you typically see some big hits coming out of the packs/boxes from this event. However, Dave & Adam’s sell these packs on their site 10 for $39.95, so I wasn’t expecting much. There are 5 cards per pack and it’s a multi-sport product. The base card design is a throwback to 1989 Upper Deck Baseball. I expected to get 5 base cards and simply move on to breaking my Topps Update products. Well, to my surprise, I pulled one of the best cards I’ve ever pulled in my life.
So yeah, that happened. A Michael Jordan autograph numbered /25. The numbering doesn’t even matter honestly. I’ve always wanted a Jordan autograph, but it’s just not anything that I’ve ever saved up for and purchased. I don’t have to do that now. I’m still kind of in shock as I type this the next morning. Of all the places one could pull a Jordan autograph, mine came from a $4 (free for me) pack. Unbelievable.
Just a quick follow-up to my 2014 Topps Platinum Football Retail Value Pack Case Break post from about 2 weeks ago. If you read that post, you’ll know that we pulled several redemption cards from the case. I entered them the day after we busted the case and they’ve already arrived today. Not bad service from Topps there.
So the cards are a Veteran Auto Patch of Ryan Mathews numbered 100/172, a Rookie Refractor Auto of Devin Street, a Rookie Patch Auto of Aaron Donald and a Rookie Patch Auto of Jeremy Hill. Donald and Hill are both promising players, so I was happy to see that those had been signed and would be available for shipping. I was even more happy when I opened the bubble mailer today and saw the patches on those two. 3-color on Donald and the Nike swoosh on the Hill. Topps hooked me up on the patches.
I can’t remember having a retail case break this good in a long time. I was happy enough hitting that Odell Beckham gold auto and the other cards detailed in the previous post, but getting these today made it that much better.
Blowout Cards (www.blowoutcards.com) had these boxes on sale last week for $15.16 per box (limit 3). At that price, I figured what the heck. They have two autographs and 6 prizm cards per box. Even after paying shipping, it was still cheaper than buying 3 blaster boxes of something at Wal-Mart or Target.
I’ve always enjoyed Prizm products. However, I’d never buy them at full price. You can typically get a steep discount a year from release, except maybe on some years of basketball. The products are always loaded with numbered cards, parallels and at least an auto per box. That even goes for many of their retail boxes through the years.
Let’s see how we did on our three boxes.
Well, you can’t win them all. It was cool that we pulled so many low numbered prizm cards. The two tie dyed are numbered /49, the blue is /75, the purple is /99 and the two camo are /199. This is what I was saying I love about Prizm. A non-autographed low numbered prizm can really save a break. That didn’t happen here, but player collectors will pay good money for the right player.
The other thing I enjoy about this set is the NFL players in their NCAA uniforms. I know that doesn’t appeal to everyone, but I enjoy it. There’s plenty of that in this set if you’re into it. It’s a whopping 250-card set with at least half of the cards being NFL players. The other half being players from the 2015 Draft.
The downside to this product is that the insert sets are huge, one of them (Stained Glass) being 100 cards. Those are one per box, so it’s not realistic for the average person to put a master set of this together from breaking boxes/cases. Even putting a base set together would take 6 boxes worth of base and hope for perfect collation.
Overall, I dig this product for the price. Anything over $15 to $20 per box, I wouldn’t touch it.
UPDATE (5/11/16): The Kam Chancellor tie dyed prizm sold for $16.50 on eBay via best offer, so that paid for one of the boxes alone. I sent all the other cards pictured into COMC with a recent submission, so it will be a bit for I sell any of those.
For the last few years I’ve been dabbling in the Topps digital card apps. Mainly, I log in every day to get coins and then I wait for something worthwhile to spend them on. I don’t really participate in any of the games on the sports apps. I also rarely spend real money in the apps unless it’s to get access to a pack that I couldn’t get otherwise. This is usually a .99 cent charge to buy the cheapest coin bundle.
The Topps digital apps are Topps Bunt (baseball), Topps Huddle (football), Topps Kick (soccer) and Star Wars Card Trader. Each app has been out for several years and they only seem to be growing year after year.
There are some collectors out there that spend serious money in the apps and on eBay. Yes, eBay. There is a huge digital card secondary market on eBay if you weren’t aware. These cards only exist in the apps. There is no physical card component to these like there is for Upper Deck’s ePack. However, you can trade and that’s how you’re able to sell these on eBay. They’re listed like any other card, but the standard appears to be offering them as “local pickup only” so that there isn’t any shipping/tracking required. Once your card sells and you get paid, then you trade it to your buyer within the app. They will give you their username in the app as part of the transaction. Easy as that.
Want examples of digital cards selling for real money, well here you go:
I got lucky and pulled these Kenta Maeda signature cards in the Topps Bunt app. The odds to pull the blue signature were 1:15 packs and the red was 1:75 packs. The packs cost 50,000 coins each. To put that in perspective, you get 10,000 coins per day for logging into the app. I had saved up just over 500K coins waiting for something worthwhile to spend the coins on. As you can see, I crushed the odds, which is why I say I got lucky. The blue signature sold for $16.00 and the red sold for $73.00. This is within minutes of me listing them. That’s $89.00 in real money for digital cards.
I pulled both of these Larry Fitzgerald signature cards in the Topps Huddle app a few weeks ago. The black was 1:5 odds and the red was 1:25 odds. I ended up pulling two black and one red. The packs were 100,000 coins each and again I got lucky pulling the three cards in a total of five packs. I only had 500K coins to spend. I sold the red for $16 and the blacks for $4 each. That’s a total of $24 in real money for digital cards. In case you’re wondering, the Huddle market is softer than the Bunt market.
I have plenty of other sales examples from both of these apps and the Topps Kick and Star Wars Card Trader apps that I’ll share over time. Maybe I’ll make a habit of posting my good sales in the apps.
I’m not one to judge people for what they collect. While this may not be my cup of tea, I can see why people do collect and spend money in these apps. There are some great designs and opening the digital packs really is the same thrilling experience as opening a physical pack. My only concern is what happens if/when Topps no longer supports these apps? The real world value of these cards only exists within these apps. All the money that people spent on these digital cards is suddenly gone. This may be a post for another time because I have a lot more thoughts on this.
For now, the apps are thriving. Topps has hired a whole team of designers and mobile developers in Florida to support and grow their digital business. How long it will last no one knows.
News quickly spread on Sunday that the 2016 Bowman Chrome Kenta Maeda Superfractor Auto redemption had been posted on eBay. It was listed for $14,999.99. Well, news came this morning that the card had sold for a cool $7,000.00. Here’s the proof:
This is arguably the biggest hit in the product besides the Yoan Moncada Superfractor Auto. It will be interesting to see what that one ends up going for. For now, everyone will hold their breath and hope that it ends up surfacing in one of their breaks.
I’m pretty late putting my thoughts out there on this product, but with the tweet below being sent out yesterday I felt like now would be a good time.
For those that aren’t aware, Upper Deck made 2015-16 Series 1 Hockey available through a new outlet this year, Upper Deck ePack (www.upperdeckepack.com). In a nutshell, you purchase your digital ePack’s and open them online. These are hobby packs and the odds are exactly the same as if you purchased hobby packs/boxes/cases from your local card shop or online shop. There are two unique insert sets only available in ePack, Code to Greatness and Instant Impressions. Everything else is the same.
Here’s the difference, the base cards (non-inserts) don’t really exist unless you get 10 of the same player. Once you get 10 of one player, you can convert those 10 base cards into 1 foil version of that same card. The same concept goes for the Young Guns, except it only takes 5 of one player in those to convert to 1 foil card. The Young Guns are also considered an insert, so those are available to you without converting into a foil card. As you can imagine, you have to open quite a bit of product in order to make a complete foil set.
Pricing through ePack is as follows: $3.99 for a single pack, $89.99 for a 24-pack box and $1,049.99 for a 12-box case. This price has stayed consistent throughout and has remained fair compared to prices on the secondary market. Series 1 has a very strong rookie class highlighted by Connor McDavid, so the demand has consistently been high for this product.
You have a couple options for getting your cards from the Upper Deck ePack site. You can have the cards shipped to you directly from the ePack site or you can transfer your cards to your COMC (comc.com) account and sell them or ship them to yourself later from there. In either scenario, COMC is doing the shipping. They have received all the cards from Upper Deck and do the fulfillment.
Recently Upper Deck released their second product on the ePack site, 2015-16 Upper Deck MVP Hockey. Once again, there is “convert” element and unique inserts to the ePack packs. But once again, odds and the set match the core hobby product otherwise.
Another key addition to the ePack site since its inception has been the addition of a trading platform. There is also a forum to communicate with other members in order to post want lists. This really helped collectors interested in completing the foil set to accomplish that goal.
My personal experience with ePack has been a good one. I opened a lot of the Series 1 product and took advantage of the trading platform to eventually complete my foil set. I love the convenience of opening packs whenever I want from my PC, phone or tablet. My experience having cards shipped directly from the ePack site or after transfer to COMC has been positive as well. If you’re shipping a large number of cards, the shipping does get very pricey as it’s .25 cents per card plus a small flat fee.
Once I got all of my foil cards in hand I sent some of the key Young Guns in for grading. Overall, the condition of the cards from coming ePack is similar to what you’d get if you’d bought cards and opened hobby boxes yourself. Some have small issues, but overall they’re mostly mint to gem mint. You’ll see some pictures of my foil set below with the graded Young Guns.
The issue I see with this moving forward is that there’s not another Connor McDavid to drive demand and keep people buying product at full retail prices. Series 2 with the Eichel rookie is down to around $50 per box on the secondary market at the moment and it hasn’t been released on ePack yet. It was supposed to have been released by now, but I suspect the softer secondary market has a lot to do with why it hasn’t. Even MVP is overpriced on ePack at $56.99 per box. The secondary market is around $35. I can’t imagine it’s selling very well for Upper Deck on the ePack site. This will be the question moving forward, will Upper Deck adjust the ePack pricing based on the secondary market, or leave it at full retail and risk it not selling. It will be interesting to see how that shakes out. They do have plans to continue releasing more products, including SPx, on ePack.