Hobby Musings: 2019 NSCC redemption promos pack a punch – One of the most anticipated parts of the National Sports Collectors Convention for attendees are the wrapper redemption promos. They offered by the card manufactures as incentives for buying certain sealed products. With a variety of items including autographed cards and signed memorabilia, they offer buyers some exciting extras to get at the National.
Topps brought back its popular Bowman cards for the Chicago show. The checklist featured a good mix of rookies, veterans and retired legends. In addition to the base cards, collectors could also find randomly inserted numbered parallels and autographs.
The packs were so popular that Topps had incredibly long lines of people each day to receive them. While I didn’t pull any autographs in the three packs I had, I did come away with a nice Andrew McCutchen parallel numbered to 25 and a Roger Clemens gold card numbered to 50. Checking the cards out, it’s easy to see why they are so popular. The cards bear the Bowman design with a heavier feel and a shine and quite frankly, they really are nicely designed. It’s a set I’d love to put together, and the resell values on eBay have been fairly strong so far.
Panini also brought back an old National favorite with its silver packs. The company offered a wide array of products across their licenses at various price points in order to get the packs. Doing so allowed buyers a good variety of boxes to choose from, and they didn’t have to break the bank in order to get them.
The big name to pull in this year’s packs was No. 1 NBA draft pick Zion Williamson. With his cards going for big money, attendees were scooping up silver packs like crazy. Some vendors were selling sealed silver packs in the $8-10 range, another testament to their popularity this year. While I didn’t pull a Zion card in the packs I busted, I did get multiple numbered parallels in my packs, including a nice Marvin Bagley card. My big hit was a Luka Doncic jersey card numbered to 50. Carrying a little bit of shine, the memorabilia swatch was noted as being event worn.
Upper Deck featured its black packs and case break incentives. Both proved to be immensely popular and were quickly sold out. Being out of black packs heading into Saturday, Upper Deck came up with some creative thinking on the fly. Customers who bought two boxes of select UD products were instead given a raffle ticket and the chance to redeem for something. The raffle ticket items included an Upper Deck Hawaiian shirt and another box of sealed product. One lucky collector even came away with a baseball signed by both Wayne Gretzky and Kevin Smith. While it may have been disappointing for some to not get the packs, kudos to Upper Deck for offering up some pretty nice consolation prizes.
Upper Deck also did well by its customers for the redemptions in terms of buy-in points. Unlike the other companies, you didn’t have to buy a sealed box to get redemption packs. Collectors were able to get a black pack for as little as a handful of packs from a product like Goodwin Champions.
Each pack included four cards. Two were Top Shelf Rookies cards and the other two were Prominent Cuts cards featuring some of Upper Deck’s notable spokespeople. I hit a Victor Robles autograph in the last pack I opened. Numbered to 75, the card featured a sticker autograph.
Like Upper Deck, Leaf offered a nice variety of redemption items at both the box and case level. Brian Gray and company did a nice job with their 1992-themed cards. Offering a 12-card case as a redemption, Leaf created a variety of colored parallels in addition to the base silver cards. My own case had an even mix of numbered parallels along with the silver cards. The best parallel I pulled was a Bo Jackson numbered to 3. I also came away with a cool Barry Sanders numbered to 7. My only wish with these was that I had an additional lot or two to open.
Breaking a case offered collectors the chance to get a special box with an encapsulated 1/1 autograph in it. As they did last year, Leaf created one heck of a checklist for these, including Cubs legend Sammy Sosa. My own box yielded Hall of Famer Hakeem Olajuwon. The cards came encapsulated in a holder, which is a good bonus for collectors who opened them at the show and wanted something safer to take them home in.
Overall, all of the card companies did a nice job again in providing value for their customers with the redemption packs and items they offered. The redemptions are definitely a highlight of the show for many attendees. As such, it’s nice to see the manufacturers not take that for granted and strive to continue providing as much value as possible in them.
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