The Panini America Quality Control Gallery: 2012-13 Panini Basketball (74 Sweet Pics)

February 28, 2013

Panini America 2012-13 Panini Basketball QC (1)

As far as dramatic, tide-turning declarations go, well, the one I’m about to make isn’t. But after spending some serious alone time with contents of the recently completed Quality Control process for the new 2012-13 Panini Basketball, this is what I can say, beyond the shadow of a doubt: This might be my favorite NBA product of the season.

The reasons why are plentiful, but perhaps none is more poignant or profound than the product’s deft usage of the vaunted Panini knight. It’s on the box. It’s on a few fancily foiled parallels. And it’s die-cut into the rare Knights of the Round one-per-case inserts. But the knight represents just the tip of the lance in terms of 2012-13 Panini Basketball’s myriad likable qualities.

There’s the set-collector-friendly 300-card base set, the affordable price point ($2.99), great photography, deftly designed inserts such as Spirit of the Game, the one-per-case Player of the Year chase, the wicked-cool Rated Rookie Signatures and so much more. Each box delivers two autographs among its 240 cards and a wealth of inserts and parallels.

2012-13 Panini Basketball also marks the introduction of the fantastic five-card Spokesmen Signatures insert that brings together Panini America’s superstar NBA exclusives (Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin, Kyrie Irving and Anthony Davis) on hard-signed, multi-player autograph cards sure to be a hit with anyone lucky enough to pull them. (This particular QC process didn’t deliver any, but we’ve managed to grab images of all five cards for this special sneak preview.)

Enjoy this first look at the new 2012-13 Panini Basketball and let us know your thoughts. The product will hit hobby shops next Wednesday.