Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Guilt-Free Basketball Card Club

I have a problem. I want to continue to buy NBA cards, but they're taking up too much room in my home. I have very limited collecting interests in the NBA: just Blazers cards, former University of Oregon players and one particular set (more on that later.) The problem is, I feel guilty about buying basketball packs any time I buy them because there just isn't the community-wide interest in these cards that there is in baseball. Buying Blazers cards as singles is just not an option for me because the price markup around here is outrageous (expect to pay at least $1 a card for even the worst player on your active roster.) Plus, going that route just isn't as fun, and I'm in this game for fun above all else.

What I'd like to do is continue to buy basketball cards because I like looking at them and scoping them out, but I don't want to keep them. Well, most of them. And that's where you come in. I want to set up a "guilt-free" club, where I no longer feel guilty when I buy cards because I know that all of my Knicks cards are going to Collector Z, my Pacers cards are going to Collector G, and so forth. If there's enough interest in this, I'll set up an official sign-up page. I already have a couple of people in mind as I recently sent all my Celtics cards (sans doubles) to Mark Kaz and have sent Charlotte Bobcats cards in the past to Colbey at Carboard Collections. This doesn't mean that you need to send me basketball cards in return, either.

This is essentially intended to be a free offering, or at least "free-ish". If I've never traded with you before, I would at least require a good faith" send some cards my way first" type of trade for the first offering, but anyone I've dealt with in the past would get these things as long as I have a current address for you, at least until you change your identity because I keep sending you Nate Robinson cards. If there's enough interest, I'll also offer up some exceptions, like picking out a player or group of players rather than a team, or "all cards where Dwyane Wade is getting dunked on." Stuff like that. I've had great experiences with collectors who I've sent cards to out of the blue and vice versa, and my hope would be that if I added a basketball team to a few people's trade stacks that it would catch on and do great things for my storage space.

In the meantime, I mentioned a particular set above that I've secretly wanted to collect for awhile. When I first heard about Panini reviving the Donruss line for basketball cards and making it a pseudo tribute to 1984 Donruss baseball, I was skeptical. I was very skeptical. As it turns out, I fell in love with it almost instantly. Full bleed photos, a much thicker than usual (for Panini) card stock, team cards, Rated Rookies (?!)... what's not to love? It's also a big enough set that there's actually more than each team's top 2 or 3 players to collect, but not so burdensome that you'd have to buy boxes and boxes. (I think?)

As I mentioned, one of my collecting interests is former UO players. This extends to football as well. Currently, Aaron Brooks and Luke Ridnour are the only players consistently found in current sets that went to UO. Ivan Johnson is another active player whose last school was Oregon, but he was kicked off the team almost 7 years ago and only recently showed up in the NBA. Terrell Brandon was a high level PG in the '90s and Blair Rasmussen was a serviceable center in the '80s, but other than that only a smattering of other Ducks have NBA cards as success at the next level has been fairly scarce.

There are parallels in this set. I haven't decided what to do with them yet, but I may hang onto some of them. I have pulled a few green ones (which might be a retail only thing?) and a blue one numbered to 49 (happened to be a Laker which I couldn't bear to scan).

The one that got away...

These Production Line inserts are fun. I mostly have bought jumbo rack packs so far, which are an insanely good deal in comparison to the single packs. There's four of these in each jumbo. I wish these had stayed on the shelf for longer than a week or two around here. If it wasn't for me snagging some of these jumbos at the card show this month from Retail Guy, I probably would have eventually given up on this set.

See? Rated Rookie! I know they didn't completely nail the logo, but still...

I will probably try to trade or sell the hits. This one is numbered to 399. I know very little about which players people are hot after in terms of basketball cards. I just know which ones are actually good.

I actually got this Wade jersey card in my very first pack. Unless I traded it away for some reason, it should be filed away somewhere. It'll likely go up for sale or trade at some point. I don't remember if it's numbered or not.

People rip on the classic Donruss '80s card backs all the time, but this still gives me warm and fuzzies for some strange reason.

I'll have a want list up for this set soon. In the meantime, drop me a comment if this sounds at all like something you'd be into. I have plenty of '90s cards (hoo...ray?) and am accumulating a fair amount of recent stuff as well.


  1. Don't feel bad...I buy basketball cards even though I don't collect any players, teams, or sets.

    I'm pretty sure that makes it a disease.

  2. I'm not much into Basketball cards either, but this club idea of yours sounds fun. I'm only Bullets/Wizards with a little 60s and 70s vintage (though you probably won't run into much of those).

    On some of the online forums I had been in a few of the "Team Trader clubs" (for Football and Baseball) which was a similar theme. I was even in charge of one or two of them during better times when I was on the ball with this type of stuff. :)

  3. That is the exact setup I am looking ot get to: All my Indians cards go to ____, all my Mets go to _____, etc. I am starting with so many, though, that getting the first ones out is taking a while....

    If you feel like throwing some Hornets or old N.O. Jazz cards in with whatever you were going to send me, I'll find them a good home here in NOLA. I know a few people who LOVE the Hornets, and I love the Jazz!

    I'll try and get a bunch of stuff mailed out Saturday, so you should have something from me next week.

  4. They did a nice job bringing back Donruss. Similar to you, a few weeks back I was surprised to find a few jumbo retail packs on sale for $2.99. Needless to say I was excited

  5. It is true; I received a whole truck-load of Celtics cards from Mr. Madding recently. I was in my glory!

    Thanks again!!

  6. I'm in the same predicament. I may steal this idea at some point. Any Blazers I find in new packs are yours. We got a box of Donruss free from Panini back when they sent us stuff. I imagine we could float some of those your way if you get a list.


Comments are highly encouraged, but then again, so is eating your fruits and vegetables.