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Panini Peek: 2010-11 Contenders Hockey

January 14, 2011

In this history-making season of hockey firsts for Panini America, perhaps no other product on the release calendar has received as much pre-release anticipation as 2010-11 Contenders.

It’s a product with a proud, universally embraced lineage in the other sports that most hockey collectors hoped — with crossed fingers —  would make its way to the ice. In late March, it will.

“Hockey collectors tend to be pretty narrowly focused on our own stuff — most of us collect hockey and nothing else — but every now and then, we’ll run across a chase set or a brand from another sport that makes us wonder what it would be like to see something similar in hockey,” says Al Muir, Panini America’s Hockey Brand Manager. “I always felt that way about Contenders. I mean, it’s an instantly identifiable brand — nothing else looks quite like it — and I think that will make it compelling to hockey collectors who are looking for something unique to pursue. Add that to the brand’s legacy of value thanks to the Rookie Tickets subset and it was the most obvious choice from Panini’s stable of brands to make the transition to hockey.”

To say the least, the product will begin with a bang, delivering four autographs per box, including at least three on-card Rookie Ticket autographs, the brand’s calling cards. Each box also will yield nine additional insert cards from a truly unique roster that includes the likes of Leather Larceny, The Great Outdoors, Against the Glass, Draft Tandems, Lottery Winners, Rookie of the Year Contenders and more.

Some of the inserts are worth a closer look:

  • Leather Larceny captures the game’s top puck-stoppers flashing the glove on leather stock (#’d to 1,000 with autographed versions #’d to 50).
  • Against the Glass acetate cards put collectors in the front row for the most bone-crunching action in sports.
  • The Great Outdoors will warm up collections with the best photography from one of the NHL’s signature events, the Winter Classic (#’d to 1,000 with autographed versions #’d to 50).
  • NHL Ink provides a pair of signatures from some of hockey’s hottest names.
  • Lottery Winners delivers the most coveted prospects in the sport selected over the last five years. 

But arguably the most riveting and appealing inclusion of the entire product is the Golden Ticket insert, a revolutionary development in the trading card industry — 1/1 trading cards made with 11 grams of real gold. (Stay tuned for more details on these.)

“Contenders as a brand has a lot going for it, but there’s no way hockey collectors would accept a pre-fab release that was lifted directly from a previous football or basketball program,” Muir says. “This will be recognizable as a Contenders release, but our team knew it had to feel like a hockey set, so we came up with some great concepts. The Great Outdoors is certainly one of them. So is Against The Glass, a chase set that really makes the most of acetate, and Leather Larceny. These are all elements that really couldn’t be done for the other sports, and that’s what made them so vital for a hockey’s first Contenders.”

Stay tuned to The Knight’s Lance for the latest updates on 2010-11 Contenders Hockey.

15 Comments leave one →
  1. January 14, 2011 11:31 am

    Sounds like another winning product. I’m very intrigued to see what these Leather Larceny cards will look like. As a Carey Price collector I can safely say that you guys will have a lot of great photos to choose from for the final product. 🙂

    Will The Great Outdoors subset be featuring all of the NHL’s outdoor games to date, and is there any chance that we’ll be seeing any shots from the forthcoming Heritage Classic?

  2. January 14, 2011 11:56 am

    I normally steer clear of high-end products–more of a set builder, and less of a GU collector.

    But FOUR autographs per box? Sweet!

    Can you hint at/around what the SRP will be, so I can start saving money / selling blood 🙂

  3. Gordie Fall permalink
    January 14, 2011 12:09 pm

    That Recchi has the 2008 Winter Classic logo….not the 2010 logo.

  4. Ernest Hebert permalink
    January 14, 2011 12:58 pm

    You guys are killing me……….the products are just getting better and better……..the photo of Recchi with just about the whole ice view is sensational ……..the colors on the tickets superb real glad you decided to go with color rather than the standard foil look on previous issues (the other sports)…….I just had a real good feeling with Panini America in Hockey things were going to get better for us the collector……..this one really sparks……..can’t wait to get my hands on some of these…….just one little thing that I would have liked to see a little different the playoff contenders logo on the bottom that curve I would have changed it makes me think to much of football maybe two diagonal lines going through with a puck…..just a thought……..

  5. Ernest Hebert permalink
    January 14, 2011 1:02 pm

    Another thought the shape encasing Playoff being in the shape of a net………

  6. January 14, 2011 1:14 pm

    This looks great. One of the best products I’ve seen regardless of sport. Love the 4 auto’s per box including 3 on-card, and who doesn’t like gold? Those could be some of the most sought after cards in the hobby this year. Very Cool!!!

  7. January 14, 2011 4:56 pm

    I hope that Ott card isn’t the only picture from five years ago, because that would just be weird

  8. January 14, 2011 5:47 pm

    No Foil board, right? The football contenders looked like they wouldn’t be foil board and they looked awesome, but now it’s looking like they’re foil.

    Please just say these words, “There is NO FOIL BOARD in this product!”


  9. Barrie G permalink
    January 14, 2011 10:17 pm

    You know how I know Panini is doing great things?

    Collectors I used to see ALWAYS on “another card company’s” Facebook page are now here giving you guys props.

    Way to go Panini, THAT is a great sign of how to get it done in the hockey hobby! 😉

  10. hupe royalty permalink
    January 17, 2011 6:59 pm

    I REALLY like the design on that Mark Recchi card. The photography is excellent. The design is outstanding. I hope you use that concept for basketball products.

  11. mike wagner permalink
    January 31, 2011 5:08 pm

    i want a box of all your products. Like everything i see. Still trying to put together my certified set. Great sets!!! Great autos!!! Mike


  1. Panini Peek: 2010-11 Contenders Hockey - Blowout Cards Forums
  2. The Routing Table This Week: Contenders Hockey, National Treasures Football « The Official Panini America Blog
  3. The Quality Control Gallery: 2010-11 Playoff Contenders Hockey (Second of Two Parts) « The Official Panini America Blog
  4. Preview: Panini Contenders Hockey « – Sports Card Blog – Your Source of Hobby News, Reviews, Previews, and Opinion

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