Not collecting any cards this season, I decided, in honor of the playoffs, to break a box of the 2014-15 NBA Hoops cards put out by Panini.
The box has 24 packs of twelve and is guaranteed to have two autographs in the box. Let’s take a look at my break.
Base cards (7): Pero Antic, Kevin Martin, Wesley Matthews, Evan Turner, OJ Mayo, Chris Bosh, David Lee
Base Rookies (2): KJ McDaniels, Johnny O’Bryant
Parallel (1): Paul Pierce (Base Green)
Subset (1): Damien Lillard (Picture Perfect)
Patch (1): Tyler Hansborough (Authentics – Red Jersey Patch)
Tyler Hansbrough – Have to go with the jersey card of the former Tar Heel star
Base cards (8): Nick Collison, Brandon Jennings, Kelly Olynyk, Devin Harris, Kirk Hinrich, John Henson, Terrence Ross, Trevor Booker
Base Rookies (2): Glenn Robinson III, Bruno Caboclo
Parallel (1): Kevin Martin (Red Back)
Subset (1): Steve Nash vs. Ricky Rubio (Matchups)
Glenn Robinson III – Not a spectacular card but the rookies are a little harder to pull this is nostalgia of remembering pulling his father’s NBA Hoops rookie card from a pack
Base cards (7): Thaddeus Young, Chase Budinger, Gerald Henderson, Jordan Hill, Jordan Crawford, Marcin Gortat, Eric Bledsoe
Base Rookies (2): James Young, Jordan Adams
Parallel (1): Nick Collison (Red Back)
Subset (2): Rajon Rondo (Courtside), Dirk Nowitzki (Shining Stars)
James Young – The Dirk card is a nice shiny card and I got three different guys named Jordan (Hill, Crawford, Adams) but I was pretty excited to get my first ever James Young card.
Base cards (7): Mirza Teletovic, Jared Sullinger, Kawhi Leonard, Tayshaun Prince, Brandon Wright, Nate Wolters, Serge Ibaka
Base Rookies (2): Julius Randle, Doug McDermott
Parallel (1): Tyler Hansbrough (Base Green)
Subset (1): Joakim Noah (Lights, Cameras, Action)
Autograph (1): George McGinnis
George McGinnis – Although I probably had my highest valued rookies of the box yet in the same pack (Randle and McDermott), have to go with the autograph card
Base cards (7): Joakim Noah, Joe Johnson, Andrea Bargnani, Courtney Lee, Jared Dudley, Patrick Beverly, Tony Snell
Base Rookies (1): PJ Hairston
Parallels (2): Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (Base Gold), Dante Exum (Base Green Rookie)
Subset (2): Deron Williams (Fast Lane), Blake Griffin (Shining Stars)
Dante Exum – One of the highest touted rookies of the class, nice to get a “variant” version of the rookie card
Base cards (7): Jeff Teague, Ty Lawson, Gordon Hayward, Raymond Felton, Zach Randolph, Archie Goodwin
Base Rookies (2): Jerami Grant, Markel Brown
Parallel (1): Andrea Bargnani (Red Back)
Subset (2): Damian Lillard (Moments of Greatness), Manu Ginobili (Courtside)
Caron Butler – No outstanding pulls of the pack so I will go off of looks. I am always a sucker for these “studio shots” of guys in a new uniform. Who knows how random a Butler Pistons card will look a few years down the road anyway?
Base cards (7): Victor Oladipo, Andre Iguodala, Taj Gibson, Shane Larkin, Dwayne Wade, Chris Paul, Ryan Anderson, Bismack Biyombo
Base Rookies (2): Spencer Dinwiddie, Nick Johnson
Parallels (1): Joakim Noah (Red Back)
Subsets (1): Goran Dragic (High Honors)
Goran Dragic – For those who know me, this is no surprise. Goran Dragic’s 2014-15 was one of my personal favorite seasons to watch of a player, as Gogi was my guy and I witnessed a ton of this live, as chronicled on the Culture Crossfire Forums in Live Attendance Phoenix Suns blog.
Base cards (8): Mike Dunleavy, Nerlens Noel, Dion Waiters, Xavier Henry, Tony Allen, Wesley Johnson, Jeff Green, Tobias Harris
Base Rookies (1): Aaron Gordon
Parallels (1): Gerald Wallace (Base Gold)
Subsets (2): Chris Paul/Eric Gordon (Trading Places), James Harden (High Honors)
James Harden – I thought the Summer League Action Shot of Nerlens was cool and always love Flexin’ Tony Allen but that Harden card is way too swag. Also, this is when he won the Sixth Man in OKC and who remembers him wearing that Rocket Red jacket? FORESHADOWING!
Base cards (7): Kobe Bryant, Timofey Mozgov, Michael Carter-Williams, DeJuan Blair, Kevin Garnett, Donatas Motiejunas, Vince Carter, Nene
Base Rookies (2): Kyle Anderson, Jarnell Stokes
Parallels (1): Enes Kanter (Base Green)
Subsets (1): Dwayne Wade (Lights, Cameras, Action)
Vince Carter – Nothing too thrilling this pack, so go with Vince Carter showing off that Old Man Swag in his Memphis debut card.
Base cards(7): Jonas Valanciunas, JJ Hickson, Kyrie Irving, Kris Humphries, Blake Griffin, John Salmons, Goran Dragic
Base Rookies (2): Jusuf Nurkic, Cleanthony Early
Parallels (1): Timofey Mozgov (Base Green)
Subsets (2): Kevin Durant (Picture Perfect), Marcin Gortat (Road to the Finals)
Marcin Gortat – While the Durant card is a nice one, have to go with the limited Marcin Gortat. The Round to the Finals set chronicles matchups from last year’s playoffs with there being limited number of cards for Round 1, even more limited for Round 2 and so forth. This Marcin is Round 2 – 846/999.
Base cards (8): Paul Pierce, Kyle Korver, Enes Kanter, Jamal Crawford, Jason Smith, JJ Redick, Jose Calderon, John Wall
Base Rookies (1): Shabazz Napier
Parallels (1): Boris Diaw (Base Gold)
Subsets (2): Chris Paul vs. Steph Curry (Matchups), John Starks/Latrell Sprewell (Trading Places)
John Starks/Latrell Sprewell – I was not expecting to get either one of these players in this box, so I give them this by default. Especially with Aztec Warriors Era John Starks. Hope this card gives Sprewell enough royalties to get his repossessed boat back.
Base cards(7): Derrick Williams, Brandon Bass, Dorell Wright, Richard Jefferson, Khris Middleton, Thabo Sefolosha, Danilo Gallinari
Base Rookies (2): Adreian Payne, Mitch McGary
Parallels (2): Pero Antic (Red Back), Tony Parker (Artist Proof)
Subsets (1): Ricky Rubio (Lights, Camera, Action)
Tony Parker – Artist Proof is the parallel set limited to /99 apiece. A future Hall of Famer numbered 40/99, has to be the pick here.
Base cards (7): Paul Millsap, Klay Thompson, Tiago Splitter, Jae Crowder, Terrence Jones, Kosta Koufos, Jrue Holiday
Base Rookies (1): Rodney Hood
Parallels (1): Greg Monroe (Base Gold)
Subsets (3): Chris Bosh (End 2 End), Tony Parker (Fastlane), Timofey Mozgov (Moments of Greatness)
Timofey Mozgov – Mozgov was a weird dude when I met him before a game once but I dug it. Been rooting for him since tearing it up with Cleveland and will definitely love this card of him getting 29 Rebounds in the arena of the worst nightmares of Monty Williams.
Base cards(7): Trey Burke, Tony Parker, Tristan Thompson, Mo Willias, Carmelo Anthony, Danny Granger, Tyreke Evans
Base Rookies (1): Elfrid Payton
Parallels (2): Kyle Korver (Base Green), Tyler Zeller (Base Silver)
Subsets (2): Mike Dunleavy (Road to the Finals), Kobe Bryant (High Honors)
Mike Dunleavy – This may be one of the top packs of this box. All the box cards are fairly big names, the lone rookie is a Rookie of the Year Contender (Payton), a Base Green of Korver in what may have been his finest season in the pros. The Base Silver of Tyler Zeller is my first, as these are numbered to /399 (013/399). The Kobe card is a very nice card of him with his lone MVP award but the Dunleavy card just looks really nice. A Round 1 card, this is numbered 1860/2014.
Base cards (8): Maurice Harkless, JR Smith, Louis Williams, Brandon Knight, Mario Chalmers, Chris Kaman, Will Bynum, Martell Webster
Base Rookies (1): Cameron Bairstow
Parallels (2): Tyler Zeller (Base Gold), Cory Jefferson (Red Back – Rookie)
Subsets (1): Dirk Nowitzki (Picture Perfect)
Dirk Nowitzki – I really dug the base Mario Chalmers card, as it really feels like a retro Hoops card (and Mario is even wearing a throwback uniform on the card) but the Picture Perfect set is really nice and we should honor the set as well as the former MVP/Hasselhoff Enthusiast.
Base cards (8): Kemba Walker, Manu Ginobili, Russell Westbrook, Roy Hibbert, Marvin Williams, Luol Deng, Channing Frye, Isaiah Thomas
Base Rookies (2): Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker
Parallels (1): Wesley Matthews (Red Back)
Subsets (1): John Wall (Picture Perfect)
Andrew Wiggins/Jabari Parker – I am going to cop out and do a co-pull. Yes, Wiggins will be Rookie of the Year after Jabari had the injury early this season but I can only imagine if I got a pack as a kid and pulled the 1st and 2nd pick, especially ones as highly touted as these two.
Base cards (7): Derrick Rose, Tyler Hansbrough, Miles Plumlee, Carlos Boozer, Mike Conley, Francisco Garcia, Otto Porter
Base Rookies (2): TJ Warren, Gary Harris
Parallel (1): Joe Johnson (Red Back)
Subsets (2): Andre Iguodala (Class Action), Tim Duncan (Road to the Finals)
Tim Duncan – The Iguodala Class Action card is a really, really nice looking card but like always, “boring” Tim Duncan ruins everything. A 1st Round Road to the Finals card, this Timmy is 1052/2014.
Base cards (7): Giannis Antetokounmpo, Derrick Favors, Josh Smith, Shaun Livingston, DeAndre Jordan, Corey Brewer, Anthony Davis
Base Rookies (1): Thanasis Antetokounmpo
Parallels (2): Miles Plumlee (Base Green), Kyrie Irving (Base Silver)
Subsets (2): Andrew Wiggins (Faces of the Future), DeAndre Jordan (Moments of Greatness)
Andrew Wiggins – Despite two DJ cards and getting both Antetokounmpo brothers in one pack, it came down to the Wiggins and the Kyrie. The Kyrie Base Silver may be more valuable, as the elite Kyrie is numbered 183/399 but the Andrew Wiggins card is very, very nice.
Base cards (7): Damian Lillard, Andrew Nicholson, Andrei Kirilenko, Jameer Nelson, Udonis Haslem, Luis Scola, Brook Lopez
Base Rookies (1): Alec Brown
Parallels (2): Jason Thompson (Base Gold), Jerami Grant (Base Gold – Rookie)
Subsets (2): Klay Thompson (Class Action), LeBron James (Road to the Finals)
LeBron James – Just like the Iggy, the Klay Class Action is very nice but I can’t overlook a numbered card of the King. LeBron 1st Round Road to the Finals, it is numbered 0877/2014.
Base cards (7): Markieff Morris, Stephen Curry, Nicolas Batum, Nikola Pekovic, Ian Mahinmi, Brian Roberts, Alex Len
Base Rookies (1): Nik Stauskas
Parallels (2): Michael Carter-Williams (Base Green), Joe Harris (Base Silver)
Subsets (1): Kyrie Irving vs. Steph Curry (Matchups)
Autographs (1): PJ Hairston
PJ Hairston – Joe Harris is a rookie numbered 270/399 and a couple solid bases. Autograph card still gets the bump as the top in the pack.
Base cards (8): Marc Gasol, Carl Landry, Arron Afflalo, Shelvin Mack, Hollis Thompson, Gorgui Dieng, Al-Faruq Aminu, Gerald Green
Base Rookies (2): Zach LaVine, Tyler Ennis
Parallels (1): Derrick Williams (Red Back)
Subsets (1): Carmelo Anthony (Lights, Cameras, Action)
Zach LaVine – Another fairly quiet pack but I will go with the 2015 Slam Dunk Champion
Base cards (7): Tim Duncan, CJ McCollum, Al Jefferson, Kyle Lowry, LeBron James, Samuel Dalembert, Jarrett Jack
Base Rookies (1): Noah Vonleh
Parallels (2): Kobe Bryant (Base Green), Jason Smith (Base Silver- 060/399)
Subsets (2): Chris Paul (Shining Stars), Kawhi Leonard (Faces of the Future)
Chris Paul – While the Kawhi card is very nice, going to show some love showcasing this nice card of CP3
Base cards (8): Tyson Chandler, Steve Novak, Harrison Barnes, Robin Lopez, Lance Stephenson, Kevin Love, Jason Terry, DeMar DeRozan
Base Rookies (1): Marcus Smart
Parallels (2): Kevin Durant (Base Gold), Jarnell Stokes (Base Gold – Rookie)
Subsets (1): Joel Embiid (Dreams)
Joel Embiid – The 76ers big man is way too entertaining to omit when I get my first card of him.
Base cards (7): Chuck Hayes, Ray McCallum, Wilson Chandler, Draymond Green, Norris Cole, Chris Copeland, Bradley Beal
Base Rookies (1): Dante Exum
Parallels (2): Steven Adams (Base Gold), Joe Harris (Red Back – Rookie)
Subsets (2): Mike Scott (Road to the Finals), Russell Westbrook (Picture Perfect)
Mike Scott – I’ve been a Mike Scott fan, dating back to my Spotted on the Pine article about him for this very site before he got the attention he gets with the Hawks now (http://culturecrossfire.com/sports/basketball/spotted-on-the-pine-mike-scott/#.VTxd1SFViko). Another 1st Round in the Road to the Finals, this card is numbered 0235/2014.
Wrapping up the box break, I didn’t get any duplicates as I don’t count the variants as duplicates. That is a positive to me.
Out of the 300-card base set, I got 213. A 71% completion rate seems okay but seeing this a set more dedicated to set building then the more expensive product, this continues to disappoint for me. I guess I get why the company would not want someone to get one box and be done but odds are I will still find it cheaper and more efficient to seek out the 87 cards I need from sellers individually then buying more boxes and packs.
As an autograph collector, the pulls were disappointing. The trend of getting legends to sign the cards has been moved into just getting old timers as well. McGinnis and Hairston were solid cards but nothing to justify the price of the box break as opposed to getting the set outright.
Overall, I would recommend the product. There are some nice cards and a wide-variety of players involved, which I appreciate. My experience with the hobby box wasn’t super exciting but I always have fun opening these larger boxes, as opposed to the high-end product where you get 20 cards or less and are done.