Panini Contenders 2016 Box Break

Basketball Draft Picks 2016

Panini Contenders Draft Picks Box Break is my way to kick off the 2016-17 card collecting season.

Panini Contenders 2016 sealed box
The product at hand

I usually stick to the NBA product but these $20 Blaster Boxes avaialble in the register sections of Wal-Mart and Target boast “Find 2 Autographs Per Box On Average”.  For $20, with my primary target being autograph collecting, I thought I would try this out.  $20 for 42 cards, supposedly at least two autographs, let’s go.

Open box of Panini Contenders 2016

Contenders 2016 in-pack

Inside you will find seven packs of six.  Here is my breakdown:


Pack 1

Stephen Zimmerman (Game Day)

Henry Ellenson (Class Reunion)

Stanley Johnson (Season Ticket)

Brice Johnson/ Marcus Paige (Collegiate Connections)

Wade Baldwin IV (School Colors)

Stephen Curry (Old School Colors)

PC16 Pack 1

Pick of the Pack

A few of the recent draft class, a few now-NBA vets.  No stars of the guys on first time guys but that Stephen Curry guy is doing alright.  Remember back in the day when every card in the set would be like 25 cent value at best in Beckett Magazine but Michael Jordan’s would be like $3 at the lowest? That’s how I see this.  Heck, at this rate, this Steph may wind up better than these projected autographs.

Stephen Curry Old School Colors


Pack 2

Wade Baldwin IV (Game Day)

Jamal Murray (Class Reunion)

Joel Embiid (Season Ticket)

Tyler Ulis/ Jamal Murray (Collegiate Connection)

Dejounte Murray (School Colors)

Paul George (Old School Colors)

PC Pack 2

Pick of the Pack

Paul George would be the easy choice being the current biggest star in the pack.  I’m happy to get my first card of Phoenix Suns rookie and Devin Booker’s Best Friend, Tyler Ulis but to me, I have to Trust the Process.  I really dig the Joel Embiid card.

Joel Embiid Season Ticket

Pack 3

Dejounte Murray (Game Day)

Ben Simmons (Class Reunion)

Daniel Hamilton (Draft Ticket – autograph)

Jaylen Brown / Tyrone Wallace (Collegiate Connection)

Tyler Ulis (School Colors)

Kyrie Irving (Old School Colors)

PC Pack 3

Pick of the Pack

So this may be the best pack yet.  Got a lot of stars but of course the autograph card is the one guy I wasn’t familiar with…  My first Ben Simmons card, 3rd pick for Boston Jaylen Brown, a solo Tyler Ulis, another Dejounte Murray, oh yeah, NBA Finals star Kyrie Irving.  Still will go with the autograph card as the pick – Daniel Hamilton, the 56th pick in the 2016 Draft.  Hamilton’s signature looks a lot like Doron Lamb’s.  Denver drafted Hamilton out of UConn and essentially sold his draft rights to the Thunder.  As of the start of November, Hamilton is playing for the D-League affiliate of OKC, the Oklahoma City Blue.

Daniel Hamilton Draft Ticket Autograph

Pack 4

Tyler Ulis (Game Day)

Brandon Ingram (Class Reunion)

Andre Drummond (Season Ticket)

Damian Jones/ Wade Baldwin IV (Collegiate Connections)

Deyonta Davis (School Colors)

Kevin Durant (Old School Colors)

PC Pack 4

Pick of the Pack

Really glad to see my first Brandon Ingram.  Getting the top stars already with a few packs to go is nice.  Going to go with the former NBA MVP Kevin Durant as the pick, partly for the same reasons as the Curry pick but also to show off the picture of Baby Durant (without looking up his old BlackPlanet page)

Kevin Durant Old School Colors

Pack 5

Deyonta Davis (Game Day)

Buddy Hield (Class Reunion)

Jalen Reynolds (College Ticket – autograph)

Ben Simmons / Tim Quarterman (Collegiate Connections)

Jakob Poeltl (School Colors)

Karl-Anthony Towns (Old School Colors)

PC Pack 5

Pick of the Pack

Though my first KAT card is very hard to pass on, I always defer to the autograph – even if it is another not-as-recognizable name.  Jalen Reynolds from Xavier.  Jalen went undrafted in the 2016 NBA Draft and I can’t track his current whereabouts.  There was an article in June mentioning the Summer League and Jalen working out for 16 NBA teams so only time will tell where he surfaces.

Jalen Reynolds College Ticket autograph

Here’s some highlights of Jalen dunking

Pack 6

Jakob Poeltl (Game Day)

Kris Dunn (Class Reunion)

Kyle Korver (Season Ticket)

Denzel Valentine / Deyonta Davis (Collegiate Connections)

Marquese Chriss (School Colors)

Jimmy Butler (Old School Colors)

PC Pack 6

Pick of the Pack

Good to see an appearance by Jimmy Buckets and the Suns’ youngest Marquese Chriss but I got to go with my guy, Kris Dunn.  I was in on Dunn before all the pre-draft hype and glad to finally have a Panini Contenders card of him in my possession.

Kris Dunn Class Reunion

Pack 7

Marquese Chriss (Game Day)

Jaylen Brown (Class Reunion)

D’Angelo Russell (Season Ticket)

Jamal Murray / Skal Labissiere (Collegiate Connections)

Henry Ellenson (School Colors)

DeMarcus Cousins (Old School Colors)

PC Pack 7

Pick of the Pack

Always good to see Boogie Cousins, I like the Chriss and Brown cards for personal reasons but there is something that really stands out with the D’Angelo Russell card in the Ohio State gear.  Plus, not being a Lakers fan, this is likely the card I’d try to get signed if the opportunity ever arose.

DAngelo Russell Season Ticket

Overall Satisfaction

I’m fairly satisfied with this Panini Contenders purchase.  At $20 a box, I feel I got some decent cards of both the latest rookie class and existing stars.  Heck, I got more of the big names than I have in some of my more recent NBA box breaks.  The autographs weren’t huge names but getting two in a $20 box is nice and who knows, may be worth picking up another here and there and if one solid name was pulled, would be worth it.

I wouldn’t drop a ton of money but for a quick fix on an afternoon out, this is a great choice.


Written by B. Patrick

Currently residing in Phoenix, Arizona, B. Patrick's interests include comedy, basketball, wrestling, comic books and can change as quickly as a butterfly flaps its wings.

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