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TCC News: Latest Hobby News, Headlines and Articles

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This newsletter contains a small sampling of the hundreds of hobby headlines and dozens of articles available at TCC to keep you informed on the latest hobby happenings.

In addition to the extensive library of headlines and articles, we are always working to add new and helpful resources to our site. We welcome your input and invite you to contact us with any comments, questions or suggestions by clicking here.

Happy collecting,
The TCC Staff

TCC Announcement:
Collectors and high-quality traders: Sign up now!
The Collector Zone is a free community for all trading card collectors - both sports and non-sports. There are forums for all of the major sports, non-sports, autographs and other hobby-related information. In addition, there are areas to trade, buy and sell with other collectors.

With 185 collectors and over 3720 posts in less than 2 months, there's plenty of ways to get involved with the other members - either in discussions or with trading. So, are you ready to join and start meeting other collectors?

Then, simply click here to sign up for the Collector Zone.

In addition, we're offering contests and special giveaways throughout Memorial Day weekend - running through Tuesday, May 31st. The current list of contests/giveaways with prizes still available includes:

NBA Playoffs Prize #1: "Getting to know each other" drawing
Prize: 2004-05 Upper Deck Sweet Shot Basketball - Dwight Howard Sweet Shot Jersey (SSJ-DH) game-used card

NBA Playoffs Prize #5: "And the number is... - Round 2" contest
Prize: 2003-04 Upper Deck Legends Basketball - Gilbert Arenas Signs of a Future Legend (FL-GA) autographed card

NBA Playoffs Prize #9: "Get a Member!" drawing
Prize: 2004-05 Fleer Ultra Basketball - Vince Carter Scoring Kings (SK/VC) game-used card

NBA Playoffs Prize #10: "Heat/Pistons: Guess the Total Points #2" contest
Prize: 2004-05 Upper Deck Black Diamond Basketball - Chauncey Billups Black Diamond Jersey (BDJ-CB) game-used card

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Wow. Over a million sports cards in stock: rookies, game-used, autographed, inserts, unopened boxes, sets, supplies and more. Free Shipping on Orders Over $49.

Featured Sports Cards Article:
Box Bottoms Hard to Find in Top Shape
Dear Babe: In 1990, a friend advised me that a box of baseball cards would be a good investment. I bought a box of 36 packs of Topps cards. It remains unopened. The top of the box has a picture of a Ken Griffey Jr.'s Topps All-Star Rookie card. The players pictured on the box bottom are Wade Boggs, George Brett, Andre Dawson and Dwight Evans.
Kevin Rearden, Herndon, Va.

I wouldn't be trying to cash in on any stock tips from your friend. Unfortunately, the 1990 Topps cards were part of the over productive years of the late 1980s and early 1990s. Unless you got a great deal, the box is probably worth less - $8-$12 - than you paid for it back then. The only card of note in the 1990 set is Sammy Sosa's rookie card No. 692, which lists for $5-$6. Frank Thomas' rookie card (414) is worth $2 unless you come across one without his name on the front. Those list in Tuff Stuff and Beckett for $300-$375. It's my understanding that error cards made it into some factory sets but weren't found in wax packs. As for the box bottom, it's worth $1.50 in top shape, although Boggs' election to the Hall of Fame this year might spark a little interest. The biggest problem with box bottom panels/cards is finding them in top condition. After all, they're box bottoms subject to being crunched, scuffed and in general dinged up. Three of the four panels from 1990 are worth $1-$2. The fourth panel with Nolan Ryan, Cal Ripken, Ryne Sandberg and Jim Rice is worth around $4 thanks to having three Hall of Famers out of the four players pictured with Rice still having an outside chance to make it to Cooperstown.

Read the full article...

Featured Sports Cards Article:
Beckett Game Notes: Wade, Danica, Market Numbers, Thorpe and the New Great One?
Closing the Gap on LeBron in a Flash

While LeBron James looked to be the clear cut fan favorite following the 2003 NBA Draft, he's nearly been caught in the eyes of collectors by the Flash. Dwyane Wade's Rookie Cards debuted well behind James in early-summer '03, but just as Wade has kicked it into high gear during his second NBA season, so have his cards. Here's a look at the values of the key RCs of James and Wade (both from 2003-04 Upper Deck Exquisite Collection, released in summer '04) as tracked by Beckett Basketball:

Aug. 2004 (cards debut shortly after James named ROY)
James $2,500
Wade $550

Nov. 2004 (tip-off of their second season)
James $2,700
Wade $1,000

Feb. 2005 (NBA All-Star Game)
James $2,700
Wade $1,400

July 2005
James $2,900
Wade $2,000

Read the full article...

Sponsor Message:
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Featured Article:
Fleer Stops Trading Card Operations - Out of Business?
Fleer Trading Cards has suspended its operations and will not release any more trading card products in the immediate future, or possibly ever.

The website first reported last Wednesday that a source at Fleer said the company has suspended its trading card operations indefinitely until its future can be mapped out. The report said the company has laid off the majority of its work force, although a few employees still remain.

"The trading card operation is suspended and we're not releasing anything new going forward until ownership determines the course of action it wants to take," the source, who requested anonymity, was quoted as saying.

The website for card dealer Georgetown Card Exchange (, which includes sell sheets for upcoming products, is now listing all future Fleer products as "cancelled." Fleer's website - which said nothing about the suspended operations as of this past Friday - still includes a calendar of upcoming product releases, but the company's last actual release appears to have been its 2004-05 Genuine NBA set on April 27. Two baseball sets, Patchworks and Autographics, were due out earlier this month, but have not been released.

Other previously-scheduled Fleer releases that are now listed as cancelled include: Ultra football, Tradition series two baseball, Premium baseball, Tradition football, Sweet Sigs baseball, Showcase football and Greats of the Game basketball.

According to the report, the source said Fleer's decision to suspend operations came as a surprise to most of the employees, although the company was apparently shopped around to potential buyers late last year.

Collectors waiting for redemption cards to be fulfilled from the company will apparently have to keep on waiting, at least for the foreseeable future, as the source quoted by indicated that redemption fulfillment has been suspended along with other trading card operations.

Read the full article...

Featured Article:
Sports Cards: A Little Slice of Vegas
Josh, a typical 13-year-old kid, rushes into his local 7-Eleven with a fist full of money he earned from mowing lawns that day. He quickly walks up to the counter and purchases $30 worth of scratch-off lottery tickets from the store clerk. Josh promptly scratches the tickets, one after another, discarding the losing tickets to the side. Consequentially, one of the tickets produces $50 in winnings. The $50 ticket is immediately turned in for another $50 in tickets and the process is repeated.

Does a 13-year-old boy scratching lottery tickets sound legitimate to you? Well, a similar process occurs daily in the sports card industry. In my opinion, it's hard to see the difference between buying a lottery ticket at a convenience store and a premium pack of collector cards. Sound silly? Not so fast.

Buy a pack of cards or pay your mortgage

Today, it is not odd to see collectors as young as twelve spend $100-$300 on a pack of four or five cards in hope of pulling a card worth thousands of dollars. Anyway you slice it, this is gambling pure and simple. Good luck finding a pack of cards for less than $5 in your local card shop. Just 15 years ago, I remember spending fifty cents for a pack of 20 cards and the packs came with a piece of powdered bubble gum! I looked for my favorite player or the up-and-coming rookies, not a $20,000 card. This forces me to ask the question: Is there really any difference between scratching a lottery ticket from your local 7-Eleven or buying a high-end pack of cards from a hobby shop? Not really.

Still need convincing?

One of the best examples of this "lottery" mentality sweeping the card-collecting market is the LeBron James/Michael Jordan "All-NBA Access Pass" card found in Upper Deck's 2003-04 Exquisite Collection Basketball product line. This card is extremely unique and a true "one-of-one" collector's item. Exquisite basketball initially retailed at $500 for a box of 5 cards and peaked around $700 a box or roughly 1000-1400 times the cost of a pack of cards during my youth. There is no need to do a double take; do the math and that is between $100 and $140 per card.

Read the full article...

Hobby Articles
Check out other recent hobby articles including:

Copies of Copies, Even Great Yanks, Not Too Valuable

Beckett Game Notes: NBA MVPs, Pujols, Brady and Major Hockey Auction

Topps for 50 Years

Deaf-mute Pitcher's Minor League Card a Real 'Fit for a King' Find

An 'Ultimate' Showdown with $100 Hockey Packs

Sculpture Genesis of Historical Jaunt Down Memory Lane
  NBA Veteran Cards Priced to Own

Uncut Sheets Not a Valuable Find if They Lack Stars

From ESPN to McDonald's: Reviewing Hobby Happenings

Ali's Photograph Loses Big Value If It's Unauthorized

New Sets in 1995: The Best & Worst

Ted Williams Prize from Last Opening Day in Washington

All hobby articles...

Hobby News and Headlines
5/27/05 - The Value of That Box of Baseball Cards Your Mom Tossed? If You're a Child of the '50s, Try $6,500
5/27/05 - 3 Doors Down Rocks the Races
5/25/05 - 2005 Reebok NFL Players Rookie Premiere Presented by EA Sports
5/25/05 - Topps and The Wayans Bros. Take "Yo Mama" Insults To All-New Platform
5/24/05 - Heritage Sports Collectibles May Signature Auction Realizes Record Prices
5/19/05 - Upper Deck Entertainment Joins Forces with Rainbow SRL and 4Kids Entertainment to Create New Winx Club™ Trading Card Game For Girls
5/19/05 - Wild Things - Madagascar Sets Sail for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series
5/19/05 - Topps, PSA and eBay Team to Offer Unique Star Wars Collectibles
5/17/05 - The Topps Company, Inc. Responds to Market Rumors
5/16/05 - The KONAMI Corporation and Upper Deck Entertainment Invites Yu-Gi-Oh! TRADING CARD GAME Fans to Take a 'Sneak Preview' At New 'Lost Millennium' Expansion Set
5/16/05 - Top Draft Picks Make Debut in Los Angeles at the Reebok NFL Players Rookie Premiere Presented by EA SPORTS
5/16/05 - Star Wars Is Top Choice of Collectors
5/16/05 - 2005 Topps Football - The Product...Celebrating 50 Years
5/13/05 - Chevy Rock & Roll 400 - Chevrolet Teams with Gretchen Wilson, Nickelback, Green Day and More to Entertain Fans
5/13/05 - Geppi's Memorabilia Road Show to Auction Remarkable Items from the Bert Padell Collection
5/13/05 - 4Kids Entertainment and Upper Deck Entertainment Team to Create Unique Winx Club Trading Card Game for Girls
5/13/05 - The KONAMI Corporation and Upper Deck Entertainment Unleash 'Fury' and 'Destruction' in May with New Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game Structure Decks
5/12/05 - A Night Under the Lights - Action Performance Opens Its Doors for a Special Fan Appreciation Night
5/11/05 - Major League Licensor Clears Up Major Confusion
5/11/05 - Upper Deck Authenticated Unveils First Ever Washington Nationals Patch Collectibles Line
5/11/05 - Topps Football 50th Anniversary Plans Unveiled
5/11/05 - McFarlane Toys Creates National Exclusive Nomar Garciaparra Figure
5/9/05 - Action Performance Reports Second Quarter 2005 Results
5/9/05 - Pokémon Trading Card Game Sponsors Kids Free Day - July 29
5/7/05 - Mr. Baseball LLC Produces Wooden Baseball Cards for Hoboken Birthday Celebration
5/6/05 - Happy Mother’s Day - This Weekend, NASCAR® Stars Take a Moment to Remember Mom in Darlington
5/6/05 - MLB, MLBPA Partnership with Cartoon Network Begins Second Season
5/5/05 - Pope Benedict XVI is Featured in the Newest Limited Edition Trading Cards by Paradigm Trading Cards
5/4/05 - Baseball Cards Going For Big Bucks on
5/3/05 - Action Performance to Broadcast Review of Fiscal Second Quarter 2005 Financial Results
5/3/05 - The Green Lantern Corps Ignites Upper Deck Entertainment's Vs. System™ in May With New and Powerful Expansion Set
5/3/05 - Pope John Paul II Card Sells For $8,100
5/3/05 - 960 Players in 2005 Topps Total Baseball
5/2/05 - PSA/DNA Begins Grading Of Bats
5/1/05 - SAGE Autographed Football Unveiled
4/29/05 - Donruss/Playoff, Fleer, Topps and Upper Deck All to Exhibit at the 26th National
4/28/05 - Rare Boston Celtics "Sweet 16" Autographed Photo Available at the Heritage Sports Signature Auction, May 14
4/28/05 - Paid Inc.'s Rotman Auction to Host Autograph Authentication Day with PSA/DNA
4/28/05 - Tricia Helfer, Katee Sackhoff Sign Cards For "Battlestar Galactica Premiere Edition" Card Series
4/27/05 - In The Game's Baron Bedesky Is Moving On
4/27/05 - Topps Chrome Series 2 Features Autographed Rookie Cards
4/26/05 - Collectors Universe Hires Mark Humphries as Vice President of Corporate Development
4/25/05 - #1 Pick Alex Smith Highlights Topps Draft Picks & Prospects
4/22/05 - Score Entertainment to Release Autographs From One of the Most Influential Manga Writers, Rumiko Takahashi
4/21/05 - Paradigm Trading Cards Announces Limited Edition Trading Cards Commemorating Pope John Paul II
4/20/05 - This Year's Award-Winning Finest NBA is Loaded
4/20/05 - Inkworks Named Non-Sports Card Vendor of the Year
4/20/05 - Family Guy: Season One Premium Trading Cards from Inkworks
4/20/05 - Renowned Card Stacker To Build Famous Star Wars Cityscape Using Only Star Wars Trading Cards and 'The Force'
4/19/05 - Pop Warner Team from Belton Wins Grand Prize in Upper Deck's National Promotion with Chiefs' Priest Holmes
4/19/05 - Topps Celebrates Home Run History with Barry Bonds
4/18/05 - In The Game Announces Wrapper Redemption Program for the 2005 Toronto Spring Expo
4/18/05 - Topps Inks Deal With Andrew Bogut
4/15/05 - Sold Out HIT 2005 Football Goes Live

All hobby headlines...

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