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Draft Day Items Offered on eBay

by Paul Angilly
July 6, 2004

Pacific Trading Cards has joined forces with Beckett.com to take advantage of Pacificís official trading card sponsorship with the NHL Entry Draft and offer a series of unique draft-related collectible packages through eBay auctions.

The auctions include autographed jerseys and the NHL Draft main stage nameplates for players taken in recent drafts, including this yearís. The auctions began in late June and are continuing now with memorabilia from the NHL Draft held June 26-27 in Raleigh, N.C. The auctions can be found by going to the Beckett.com eBay store at http://stores.ebay.com/Beckett-com-Store.

Each auction includes an official NHL game jersey, with no name or number, signed on draft day by one of the top picks. Also included is the actual nameplate used on the draft board when the player was chosen by his NHL team. The signed jerseys are certified by Beckett Authentic (with a Beckett seal and COA), and also comes with a letter of authenticity from Pacific Trading Cards.

Most of the auctions had opening bids of approximately $300. Items from the 2001 and 2002 NHL drafts were available in late June and items from the 2004 NHL Entry Draft are currently available.

For basketball fans, Fleer Trading Cards is offering collectors a chance to obtain memorabilia from the NBA Draft -- but instead of selling it to the highest bidder, the items are being offered through redemption cards found in the recently released ultra-premium 2003-04 Flair Final Edition NBA trading card set.

Fleer has taken the actual items used in the 2003 lottery selection and the 2003 NBA Draft and framed them together to make a eight different one-of-one pieces. Each framed piece contains the lottery ping pong ball and the team logo placard from the lottery selection show, along with the playerís name and team logo placard from the actual 2003 NBA Draft.

The eight players available are Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade, Chris Kaman, Mike Sweetney, Jarvis Hayes, Mickael Pietrus and Marcus Banks.

Each one-pack box of Flair Final Edition contains 12 cards, including at least one autographed card numbered to 200 or less, three game-worn memorabilia cards numbered to 250 or less and one rookie card numbered to 799. Soon after release, boxes/packs were selling on eBay for $50 to $96 each.

Fleer also has the exclusive rights to items used in the 2004 NBA Draft on June 24, and will make those items available as part of one of its 2004-05 NBA sets.

Arena Football, Take Three: According to a report on the Arena Football League web site, Upper Deck and the AFL have agreed to an exclusive multi-year deal to produce arena football trading cards.

The AFL recently completed its 2004 season with ArenaBowl XVIII held June 27. The report regarding the trading card deal did not indicate when AFL cards would be available, although it is unlikely that any set would be released before next season.

Although the report stated, "This agreement marks the first-ever pact between the AFL and a sports trading card and memorabilia company," it actually is the third such deal announced over the past four years -- with little so far to show for it.

Back in 2001, Pacific Trading Cards had announced that it would be the exclusive licensee for the Arena Football League, but that reported three-year deal never resulted in any cards being made except for some promos.

Early last year, the AFL announced a new partnership with Donruss/Playoff to produce trading cards on a team-by-team basis for the 2003 season. Again that deal obviously fell through, although Donruss did make a nine-card sheet of AFL stars (eight players and a checklist) that was available only with the 2003 ArenaBowl official program.

According to the report, Upper Deckís agreement allows for card set co-mingling opportunities with past AFL stars, such as Michael Lewis, Tommy Maddox and Kurt Warner. Cards of league commentators and announcers, as well as stars from arenafootball2, the AFLís developmental league, will also be co-mingled into sets.

According to an article by Matthew Pickut on the ArenaFan web site, Upper Deck has already been preparing for next year by collecting game-used items, such as jerseys, to include on memorabilia cards in the set. Prototypes featuring announcers have been created for display on NBC, which has broadcast Arena Football League games for the past two years.

Although many AFL and af2 teams have issued team sets over the years (including a five-card Connecticut Coyotes team set in 1995), there has never been a major league-wide issue. Upper Deck could change that -- if it follows through where Pacific and Donruss/Playoff failed.

Pacific CFL is Back: Pacific is making Canadian Football League cards for the second straight year, with its 2004 Pacific-brand set recently released. Last yearís sets (Pacific brand and Atomic) both proved to be surprisingly popular sellers on eBay and this yearís first offering has also drawn lots of bidding -- with the 110-card base set selling for as much as $40.

Boxes are selling for about $65 each, with 30 packs per box. In addition to the base cards, the following insert sets are available: authentic game-worn jerseys (15 cards, 1:15 packs -- two per box), "Division Collision" (9 cards, 1:11 packs), "Grey Expectations" (6 cards, 1:16 packs), "Maximum Overdrive" (8 cards, 1:16 packs) and red-foil parallels (110 cards, 1 per pack).

Also randomly inserted are autographed "Division Collision" cards, which have been very hot sellers on eBay, with some selling for more than $30 each.

Pacific picked up the CFL license last year after losing its license to produce NFL cards. Pacific had been a major NFL card producer from 1991 through 2002.

CFL cards have also been made by a Canadian company called Jogo every year since 1981. Topps and its Canadian affiliate O-Pee-Chee produced CFL cards from 1958 through 1972. A defunct company called All-World issued CFL sets in 1991 and 1992, in addition to making an NFL set in 1992 -- the last time a company made both NFL and CFL sets in the same year.

About the author
Paul Angilly is a sports reporter for The Bristol Press in Connecticut, and has been collecting sports cards and memorabilia for 30 years. He is not a dealer, nor does he make a profit from buying and selling cards. His weekly sports card and memorabilia collecting column appears each week in The Bristol Press and several other daily newspapers in Connecticut.

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