Wednesday, June 5, 2013

2012-2013 Panini Rookie Anthology Review

It seems like it's been forever since the last Panini hockey release! Today Panini finally gives hockey collectors something to sink their teeth into - 12/13 Rookie Anthology. This is the second year of this brand. Last year, collectors were treated to a product that filled in a few gaps in terms of rookies, players, and product lines. Anthology does the same again this year, but on a much wider scale. This product packs it in by including products that were cancelled because of the lockout. Let's open up a box and see what comes out of it!

Base Card Design -
The base cards in 12/13 Rookie Anthology are spot on for a product of this price range. The base are cleanly done and uncluttered. The curves that frame the photo do a great job of centering the player, and the white background helps the player to really jump off the card. Because this is an upper-mid-range product, I'm glad to see some gold foil applied to the front. It's not a lavish amount of foil, but it's enough to satisfy the notion that these cards have a premium feel to them. Team colors are used as accents on the card; again, they are tastefully done. All together they make up a pleasing looking base card. If I had one complaint about them it would be that they are on the thinner side. Slightly thicker card stock would have been nice, but it's definitely not a deal breaker here.

The back of the base card is standard Panini fare. The backs mimic the front of the card in design, which is a plus, but nothing stands out about it. It's pretty pedestrian. I've noticed recently that Panini backs have been moving toward this simpler design scheme. I'm not sure I like that. Perhaps more attention is being paid to the front, with only an afterthought to the back. I would like to see more pop from Panini in future releases as it pertains to the card back.

Like last year's set, Rookie Treasures auto/memorabilia cards highlight first year players. These super thick (for a) jersey cards look amazing. They have the feel of a card coming from a higher-end release; the design is done so elegantly. The gold foil that borders the card is classy, and reminds me of something that could come from National Treasures or Dominion. Though the cards have sticker autographs, the sticker placement looks natural and appropriate. Each card is serial numbered. The Tyson Barrie above is numbered 103/699. Lower numbered patch versions of these cards can also be found.

Base Card Design Score:

Inserts/Game-Used/Autos -
Rookie Anthology is not really about itself. What I mean by that is that this release is really meant to give collectors pieces of other products that were not available this year. Panini has jammed in cards from Titanium, Elite, Crown Royale, Luxury Suite, Contenders, and the never-been-made-for-hockey-yet Prizm.

Each box of Rookie Anthology comes with a bonus pack of Panini Prizm. Prizm has been a very popular new brand for Panini this past year in other sports. The foil and light refracting technologies found in it have caught collectors by storm. The base Prizm cards share the look as all the other Prizm brands across the other sports. For collectors who like the all-foil look, these will be a real treat to get.

Packs of Prizm contain three cards. Two of the cards will be a standard base and/or rookie while the middle card will be something special. Collectors can find autographs like the Matt Donovan I pulled, or a multitude of limited shiny parallel cards. It will be interesting to see how well hockey collectors receive Prizm. I wonder if it'll be as hot as it has been with the other sports.

From the Elite side of the product comes this Great Outdoors acetate card of Mark Messier. I'm glad to see Panini continuing with it's use of acetate in hockey. It's such a great fit for the sport. These Great Outdoors inserts represent hockey played outdoors. The image used of Mark Messier totally wrapped up is unique for sure. The pairing of the wood grain look and clear acetate is a genius move, and the serial numbering is a great touch as well. This actually might be my favorite looking card in terms of card look and design that I pulled out of this box. Elite is also represented in Rookie Anthology in its more familiar all-foil look. Rookie cards and die-cut rookies feature the fully foiled look along with serial numbering. Check out my video break for a Ryan Hamilton Eilte rookie numbered to 999.

Contenders makes its presence felt in a couple ways. The first is it's Award and Cup Contenders insert sets. These sets are remind me of the similar themed Panini Limited cards released earlier this year and last. It's like the poor man's version of those cards. These cards feature a large image of the trophy and the player. It's cool looking... it's just... well... it was done better in Limited! I'm sort of scratching my head with these guys; I'm wondering why make something so close to something you already came out with?

Contenders Legacies are the other cards from the Panini Contenders segment of Rookie Anthology. I much prefer these to the Award Contenders cards - they are much more in-line with what could be found in Contenders boxes when they debuted during the 2010/11 season. These Legacies insert cards have much class to them. The black and white photo goes with the 'legacy' theme perfectly. I'm sure they won't fetch a high dollar amount, but collectors who enjoy finding star players from the past will appreciate these beautiful cards. Each card is serial numbered to 999.

The standard jersey cards found in Rookie Anthology are the Game Worn Gear cards originally from Titanium. Panini has updated the look of these memorabilia cards so that the metal plating in the background is more pronounced. It's an improvement from its original design, but seeing as it's called 'Titanium', some metallic foil may have been an appropriate addition. Most Game Worn Gear cards are unnumbered plain jersey swatches, but there are prime and patch variations with limited numbering on them like the Timonen piece shown above. Though I didn't get one, the jersey numbered Titanium rookie cards have been inserted as well. Last year's true Titanium rookie cards commanded some pretty insane prices on the secondary market. They were difficult to find, and the same holds true here. If you get one, you've gotten yourself a very sweet pull.

Luxury Suite brings autographs and memorabilia like this Adam Graves stick card to Anthology. Luxury Suite did not do well on the secondary market when it came out in 2010/11, but the cards were very nice looking. It's great to see that Panini has not abandoned the brand entirely. The Luxury Suite cards, like the Rookie Treasures, impart a higher-end feel to the set.

Last but not least, Crown Royale puts its unique card types into the mix. This Alec Martinez patch card is an example of the All the King's Men memorabilia set. I wish the patch was nicer, but I can't complain too much about getting a card numbered to just 10. Also from Crown Royale are the Rookie Silhouette cards. These cards have been darlings of the hobby since their introduction two years ago. I'm sure collectors will again go wild for them this year. They should be among the hottest cards to find in Rookie Anthology.

There is just so much to find in Rookie Anthology. You'd really need to bust a case to get a good sampling of all the inserts, game-used, and autographed cards available. Though I was able to pull a large variety of cards in my box, it's only scratching the surface of what is in the product. See what I did there?

Inserts/Game-Used/Autos Score:

Overall Rating -
I haven't seen a new Panini hockey product in a long while, and I didn't know what to expect at all from Rookie Anthology. I was actually preparing to be underwhelmed.

That didn't happen.

Rookie Anthology was a great break. It was full of fun and full of value. For the price, Rookie Anthology is a winner. I was amazed at the possibilities of cards to find within boxes. The bonus Prizm pack added even more value to the product.

Today during it's initial release I've been able to see quite a bit of breaks over various internet sites. Many collectors have had similar positive experiences with Rookie Anthology. I can't say that there are a ton of absolute monster hits to be found, but with this product, Panini seems to be giving out solid overall value.

I recommend 2012/13 Rookie Anthology to all collectors either by the box or by the pack. It's price is relatively affordable in both forms. Let me know what you pull out of it! I'd love to hear what you got and what your thoughts about this product were in the comments section.

Overall Rating:

Check out my break of 12/13 Rookie Anthology from D&P Sportscards:


  1. Looks good this year all of the boxes that don't come out in one is nice to see what the year would have looked liked

    1. it looked great love to break it my self great box blacksheep love your vid

      youtube canucks rule

  2. I love rookie anthology. Tons of hits!The design is clean and what I like about it is all of the inserts are numbered.

    youtube name: vancanuckman1234

  3. I really wasn't expecting much out of rookie anthology this year, but it actually looks to be really good! May have to pick up some packs myself :)

    Youtube: MrCardCollector97

  4. I have watched many breaks of this today, I love it more than the 11-12 Anthology. I like how they were able to keep all the cancelled products and not remove them entirely.

    Titanium, Elite, Contenders, Crown Royal what more can you ask for out of 1 product?

    The prizm packs I like a lot as I am a fan of that technology, I like how each one of those packs includes a base, regular rookie and a special insert rookie either blue, red, gold I believe, Auto, Auto Numbered, and Rainbow.

    I love the great outdoors cards I like the clean design and how they are see through just like the Elite Intensity.

    The design of the contenders products are nice like the hart, Vezina, and Stanley Cup. The colours on the card work well with the black background.

    LA Kings certainly have the most hits out of this product with the Kings of Men, great stuff.

    The Luxury Suites are nice cards how they are all Sticks, some even have autographs from what I have seen.

    My favourite part of the product is the Sillohettes that comes 4 per case. Some are numbered some are not numbered. Some are auto and some are not. Some are even 1 of 1. The design on those cards are out of this world. Clean, Big, Bold.

    This product is a must for anyone that is for sure.
    I rate this product for this year a big 10/10

    Youtube: Starnsfan00

  5. What a great product. That is all I can really say right now. I absolutely love it. It is so vast. I mean, how many products have been put into this? Five? Six maybe? I don't know. But it is fantastic. The kinds of hits are what seem to be endless. I just went out to my expensive LCS to buy a pack and got two hits in one pack. I'd say that's not bad. Already I am having a good experience with this product. The base design is stellar. Everything is stellar in my opinion. It seems the whole "Bonus Pack" thing is starting to catch on too. It seems to work with Rookie Anthology as well. I am really liking this. Did I say that already? I don't know, someone keep count for me. Anyways, another great review by you Luke. I hope you enjoyed my short little love rant and I sure enjoyed your write-up.

    Take care and keep the good work rolling.

  6. This product is one of the best out there for hockey and is really cool since you can get rookies, legends and current stars and is a great product to buy if you just started collecting. YT: TeamRGHQ2Sports (Great Review By The Way)

  7. I really enjoy Rookie Anthology because of the design and the hits are phenomenal. The inserts are looking great, like how they include Prizm Hockey, because it is a fun set to collect. This year if my cousin doesn't take any, I will try to complete the base set of it. Panini did a really good job with this product. 10/10

    Youtube: jtayl132

  8. I rate this 10/10 you got 7 hits, and a bunch of numberd cards in a box. 2 patches, a stick rookie auto jersey, rookie auto, asitate auto, 2 jerseys. Lets out it this way you get 2 jersey cards from ud series 1 for the same price.

    Better then artifacts


  9. I also didnt expect to see much from this product but was pleasantly surprised. Love the variety of what you can hit, product looks awesome!

    YT: 49ersfan619

  10. Always great seeing this product come out, can't complain with ( I believe ) 5 or 6 different products inserted in it? Very cool. Base cards look very unique as well as the hits.

    YouTube username : DMoffattHockeyTimes

  11. Thanks for the give away... I thought the product delivered. Well done Panini. Can't wait for Sp-authentic next Wednesday.


  12. Cant wait to buy a box for myself in the upcoming week looks like a good product

    YouTube username : WesThePest

  13. I thought it was a really good upgrade for Anthology.. Lots of nice cards like the Luxury Suite, Crown Royale and Titanium.. I got into a break last night and hit 4 cards.. I also love the look to the Prizm pack.. Im looking forward to eventually buying a box.

    Youtube Username: Daazelwurm

  14. Sweet product, u get a lot for your money, I love the base

  15. I loved rokkie anthology last year and i think i'll like it again only because of all the products that go in to it and also it is not all rokkies for hits.


  16. i love rookie anthology it is a great product!
    Youtube- Irbehockey cardcolect

  17. Love the look and value for rookie anthology, comparing the product to last years the rookies were better but the cards and the product itself is awesome.
    Youtube: Graboguru

  18. great break love your vids keep em up

    youtube canucks rule

  19. This product looks awesome! Panini really stepped up there design this year. I also like how they put contenders and other sets in this product.

    Youtube: Sports149

  20. Not a fan of the design this year and really not a fan of the Mixed Bag approach.
    The game worn gear looks especially bad.
    The quality of the pieces seems solid though.

    Youtube: Sven Greg

  21. Looks amazing....just wish I could afford to buy a box though.
    Youtube - NotSo CasualGamer

  22. By far best break for yoyr buck box

  23. Rookie Anthology is great every year but I think this year they put it over the top. All inserts are numbered, more hits, clean design and better hits in my opinion. I just want to say that I started in YouTube almost a year ago and the first thing I did was subscribe to you. And what your doing is great. Keep It Up! rkesler101

  24. Great product, I love the variety of the jerseys/autos and inserts. Might have to pick some up myself.

    YouTube Username: MrHockeynut77

  25. This product looks amazing! Yeah there are many thing that they could change but for that price this product is pretty insane! Of course i wouldnt go for set but insert cards looks nice, silhouettes look great especially with autographs!

    YT martinspridstavlaet

  26. I think it looks great this year. Some of the hits I've seen have been sick! Great break luke!
    YouTube name - CUB3Jsg22

  27. Great product. Very underpriced product.Younger kids should really look to get this product by the box or by the pack. Youtube username is Erik Karlsson

  28. I was really impressed with last year's Anthology and this one is no different. Love the base designs and especially, like you said, the Great Outdoors acetate cards. Also, the Rookie Treasures look better than ever! Great review and I love the new website pic of your YT setup!

    YT - blackhawks61895

  29. Rookie Anthology impressed me this year from what I have seen so far. Before the release, I read comments from bloggers that said stay away from 12/13 anthology because it is going to be the same as last years anthology. This statement is false and this years product is very well put together. Hits come by the handful in this product, hopefully the price stays the same and doesnt sky rocket.

    YT- bmurphy1325

  30. The product looks awesome! My favourite part is that it is like buying 4 products in one boz. Also, the designs on all the cards look awesome. Cannot wait to get my hands on it.

    YT: VanCityCollectibles
    SCF: WeberCollector6

  31. Looks very nice this year. I saw the preview boxes that Panini opened and I wasn't impressed but they must have been dud boxes. I think these are great for group breaks because of all the hits!

    YT: SuckYourHeadphones

  32. Fantastic product. One of the best buys in terms of hits per box. Picked up my first box last night, and got 6 hits, including an Aaron Ness Rookie Treasures /99, and a Michael Hutchinson Luxury Suite /25.

  33. the product looks way better than last year!i also think the product is under price for what you get in the boxes.i also how finally got prizm in hockey!

    youtube name:evan8white

  34. sorry use old youtube name on accented my youtube name is:alwamwejwemw breaks

  35. Loved the look of these cards and did not expect to see the great pulls that you got from this box. I'm even getting excited over the base designs! YouTube : XXOpTiMUsSMuRFXx

  36. This looks to be the best hocke product of the year so my opinion anyways. The amount of value packed in each box is incredible. Especially since the lockout caused brands not to be produced, this product is really packed with nice cards!

    Youtube: 14opc

  37. I really like these cards. Luke your box was amazing and I might just have to buy one myself. Youtube: Skid00123

  38. Great product! Many awesome inserts and hits! Panini always does great with its Rookie Anthology boxes! Nice review Luke!

    YT: Thesens8

  39. Anthology this year is really nice, but what to expect when you put in hits from all the cancelled products into one? Still you get at least one really nice card/box, and a good amount of hits. For a Product with a pretty low price like Anthology I Think that's a very good value. My probably favourite set in Antholology in terms of card design is the "Great outdoors"-set. I'm actually in love with that design. And there's also sweet looking hits to be pulled, and Prizm-card which look even better than I first thought!

    Youtube: Majlfp

  40. I love rookie anthology this year. I love how they added all the other sets that got canceled into the product. One thing I think they should have done is they should have made it rookie anthology, contenders, crown royale, titanium and elite base randomly sorted in the packs instead of just the one. I also love how Carter Ashton has so many cards so now I have more for the PC to chase.

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