Archive for Los Angeles Lakers

What’s in that box? “Basketball Floor Box” edition

Posted in Box / Pack Break, Newspaperman with tags , , , , , , , , on June 19, 2016 by Cardboard Icons

By now if you’re a frequent visitor of the sports card aisle at Target you’ve seen these not-so-fancy looking repack boxes distributed by Fairfield. The boxes show you a piece of wood and boast that the lumber is a piece of game-used floor from the 2011 NBA All-Star Game.

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For $12.99 you get a piece of floor, three packs, a memorabilia card, a Kevin Durant rookie, and a pack of Teenymates. I’m not a basketball collector really, but I will say that the floor piece intrigued me. The Target I was at had two of these boxes, one of these had a plain piece of wood and the other had a two-tone piece that appeared to have some paint on it. I decided that I was intrigued enough to buy it and bring this post to you to share what was inside.

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We’ll start with the wood.  Funny enough when I opened the box the wood tumbled into my hand and I immediately thought it was a piece of a train track from my son’s toy bin. I wondered if there was any stamp of authenticity, but there was none.  Instead I later found in the box a small folded COA that spells out that the floor is from the Staples Center, home of the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers.  The COA references “nbalab.com” which is Web site I’d never heard. And even to this day if you type up the address, you get a stale home screen, the words “Coming Soon” in the corner, and some verbiage about what the site hopes to bring to the world. In short, I’m still not sure if there is a direct association with the NBA other than the use of the logo and the three initials in the name. What does this mean about the authenticity? Got me. I guess if we have questions we can just e-mail Bill, as it says on the COA. Personally, I’ll take it for what it appears to be: A unique piece of wood purported to be from the NBA all-star game and from the court on which legend Kobe Bryant played. What’s it worth?  Less than $12.99.

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My memorabilia card came in the form of a 2008-09 Upper Deck Ben Gordon white swatch, which feels like some sort of patch and not your basic fabric. That’s a win … I suppose.

The Durant rookie is a 2007-08 Topps Retail factory Set Orange exclusive. They can be had for about $4 on COMC.com … if they were mint, which this one is not due to the fact that it bounced around inside the package.

My three packs actually surprised me as two of them were 2014-15 Prizm retail. I was fully expecting three 1990-91 Hoops packs. Only one of those Hoops packs made it into this box and both Prizm packs had Prizm parallels, which is a win I suppose. The Hoops pack was what you’d expect — a bit of a memory flashback from when I was a kid. And while not much of anything in that set is worth anything, I did get a Michael Jordan base card, which is always fun to see.

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I’ll spare your time with the Teenymates. Move along, nothing to see there.

Would I buy another? Probably not, but that doesn’t mean you should buy one if the piece of purported floor intrigues you.

Thrift Treasures 70: `National’ finds, Bargain Bin — Any item a buck #1

Posted in Thrift Treasures with tags , , , , , , on August 5, 2014 by Cardboard Icons

IMG_2283Well, I just got back from The National Sports Collectors Convention, which was held in Cleveland this weekend.  I was working for Beckett during the event, so I did not get a chance to sift through all of the bargains that were out there to be had.  It should be noted that I did notice quite a few people digging through dime and quarter boxes.  I love seeing this.  These are my favorites. Good for you guys.

Anyhow, I did manage to make a few minor purchases along the way. I”m going to break my finds up into some short posts so that they are easier to read.  In this one I will showcase three items that I acquired from an interesting dealer.  I managed to find this dealer in 2012 at the show in Baltimore, where I unearthed some fantastic autographed 3×5 cards as shown here.

Well, this time the seller had a ton, almost literally 2,000 pounds, of small paper items that were sports related.  There were lots of match book covers, sports schedules, bumper stickers, etc.  He also had a bunch of press photos and these photo sheets, shown below.

I could have spent the entire day at this booth, but I gave it about 10 minutes and located three press photo sheets that struck my fancy.

If you’re unfamiliar with the newspaper production process, allow me to share how these worked.  Before digital photography and digital layout programs, a lot of the newspaper design was done by hand.  Producers would cut the pictures, advertisements, etc. and lay them out on paper, using wax to adhere the items to mockups.  The mockups were then sent to the press room, where the items then were eventually etched into a plate, which was then used to produce the items that were delivered to the front door.  The process is a little more detailed than that, but you get the point.

At the beginning of each season, newspapers would receive player press packets which included pictures — mugshots — of the guys on the roster.  The mugshots then could be used for publication at any point during the season; designers would use a grease pencil to show how images should be cropped; and they crossed-out certain players on any given day to ensure that the right player’s image was being used with the story.  Having worked in newspapers before, I saw a lot of these.  But rarely would I see them outside of the newsroom.

Well, this dealer had a bunch of them.  Almost every team, from the late 1980s through the mud 1990s.  It was clear that some had already been purchased as many key players appeared to be missing.  But in my limited hunt I decided these were must-owns.

We start with the 1993 San Francisco Giants press photo that features on Barry Bonds.  I live in the San Francisco Bay Area, and I clearly remember what  big deal it was when the Giants acquired Bonds. Kind of neat to see a young Bonds on this photo, as well as Rod Beck and Bud Black, who is referred to as “Buddy” Black here.

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Secondly, we’ll go with the 1990 Boston Red Sox photo, which highlights one Roger Clemens, my favorite player of all time.  1990 was a good and bad year for the Red Sox.  They won the American League East and went head to head against the Oakland Athletics in the American League Championship Series.  In that series, Roger Clemens was famously ejected from game in Oakland. Given that Clemens’ picture is the one the user of this item was focusing on, it’s fun to think that this sheet could have been used to create a story for that playoff game for some newspaper somewhere. Given these facts, and the inclusion of stars Mike Greenwell and Wade Boggs, it seemed like an item that had to come home from Cleveland.

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And lastly, we have a 1986-87 Los Angeles Lakers sheet that highlights Magic Johnson, but also includes some fantastic Lakers players from the 1980s, most notably Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and James Worthy. The Lakers won the NBA title that season and the MVP of the regular season, as well as the NBA finals, was none other than … Magic Johnson, who was the person whom the designer wanted int he newspaper the next day.

IMG_2278I wish I had spent more time digging through these bins.  I really like these player photo sheets.

Total cost of these treasures: $3.

To see more Thrift Treasures posts, click HERE

Card of the Day: 1997 Bowman Chrome Promo Sheet

Posted in Card of the Day with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 1, 2008 by Cardboard Icons

OK, so technically this is a promo sheet and not a card. Sue me. Mario over at Wax Heaven got me thinking the other day about the popularity of Bowman Chrome — a topic that I’m sure has been covered ad nauseum throughout the blogosphere — but I figured this would give me an opportunity to drag out the original promo sheet for the inaugural product and add my two cents. Continue reading