Monday, December 23, 2013

Cardboard Commentary #40 (More Lamenting!)

A couple weeks ago, I wrote that I was lamenting the fact that the Upper Deck Team Canada set was available only to Canadian collectors and stores. Well... the lamenting continues as there appears to be more Canada-centric marketing from the card companies. A few days ago, Upper Deck released their team-specific Edmonton Oilers product, and as far as I know, the only place to get this is in Canada. And to join in on the Canada-only fun, Panini has released Dominion... EARLY IN CANADA. It's out for you (if you're in Canada) but not for me! Argggghh!!!

In this modern age of purchasing, you would think getting any sort of product you wanted couldn't be that hard. You really just have to go online, look for an internet storefront, purchase what you want, and BAM, it arrives via international shipping. Well, that doesn't apply to cards, I guess. Canada has been the recipient of some very sweet products recently that US buyers cannot easily get their hands on. See... Upper Deck has set some very specific rules about who can sell there cards, and to whom. Card stores who have Upper Deck's blessing to sell their cards, can only sell within the country.

So products like Upper Deck Team Canada and the recently released Edmonton Oilers Collection can be found up north, but not here in the United States. In fact, Upper Deck's rule is that their Canadian dealers cannot sell ANY of their products outside of Canada until a year has past... A YEAR!!! That's just nuts to me! I'm sure it has to do with some sort of protecting the retailer mumbo jumbo that they have reasoned out... but for me... IT'S NUTS! I really wanted to try a box of both of those products.

The only way I think I could have gotten those is by getting someone to purchase a box for me up in Canada, and then have them ship it to me in the United States. It's do-able, but it's also a big hassle. It's not like I don't have connections in Canada, but still, I just think it's too much trouble for such a thing.

For products like Team Canada and the Oilers Collection, I can see why they would be slated for Canada-only release. Both of those products are very Canadian-centric. By limiting the production, Upper Deck has actually created a product that will be somewhat rare and difficult to find in the following years. Upper Deck has had success with this format in the past.

What I don't get is Panini's decision with Dominion. Dominion should be released today (Dec. 23rd)... and I guess it was... but only in Canada! This mainstream product has been giving the green light in Canada, but won't be in the United States for purchase until January 3rd!!! That's not until NEXT YEAR!!! Which isn't that long from now... but long enough. I know many US retailers that would be very unhappy with this. Why would Panini make this move? You got me! I have no idea.

I just know that it is very hard to wait on a product and want to bust it while many people already have the opportunity to do so. When Dominion is finally released in the US, US collectors will have already seen it, and I think won't be so excited about it. I know that I personally won't be as eager to bust it knowing that I didn't have the opportunity to open it on its release day. And let me tell you... January 3rd is a long ways off. Dominion interest will have cooled considerably and the excitement worn off by the time that day rolls around.

So as all of this happens... I just lament these facts.

What do you guys think of what's going on at the moment in cards in regards to recently released products being Canada-favored? I mean, it must be nice for those of you in Canada... but I think it has an overall negative effect. I'd love to hear your thoughts!


  1. I totally see why it'd suck for the US missing the release date of Dominion because the cards will have lost their initial appeal; ebay sellers might miss out on selling singles while they're hot.... But for the people who just collect, like me, it's not a big deal b/c, I wouldn't mind waiting since dominion doesn't look that great honustly.

    As for the 2 products not available to the US, now that sucks. I Feel for the loss there.

    Btw, Canadadians get another exclusive product this time from Panini called Boxing Day packs on Dec. 26th.

    Maybe hockey cards have been selling way better in Canada than the US, that's why they're doing it.


  2. I was wondering why the release date for Dominion on Dave & Adam's had been bumped back, a truly bizarre decision. Given I have to ship it all across the pacific, doesn't affect me too much, but it does kinda sting when breaks are being posted where guys are pulling 1/1s, knowing you never had a chance at opening that box.

    That said, having seen a few breaks, its dulled my anticipation, there's a definite drop in quality. No tins, no mini-boxes, and a double rookie class that seems to be watering down the whole thing; twice as many scrubs to pad boxes out with. Oh and redemptions, lots of redemptions. And one dinged corner, no doubt due to the cheaper packaging.

    Get what you pay for I guess, it is a lot cheaper I suppose. Wonder what Panini's new high end product will be.

    - Reebz0r

    1. timeless treasures hockey version will be Panini's new high end i think i heard

  3. Wow, the trend continues... Panini just announced on their blog that 13-14 Titanium will be Canada exclusive and that US collectors will have to buy through Panini's online store.

    - reebz0r

    1. yep, i saw that too. i heard it was because us distributors didn't want to buy into titanium because of low selling hockey. i wonder if that's true. seems like a logical thing for panini to do if that's the case.