2015-16 SP AUTHENTIC HOCKEY DELIVERS THE MOST VALUABLE RC OF CONNOR McDAVID TO DATE
The following was taken from a recent post by Stephen Laroche | Beckett Hockey Editor
Arriving Wednesday, June 29th, 2015-16 Upper Deck SP Authentic continues the line of the hockey season's most anticipated releases. On average, there are three autographs per box and at least one serial-numbered chase card. Upper Deck has added a few new autograph concepts, including signed booklets, and each case is expected to yield a pair of hard-signed patch autographs.
2015-16 Upper Deck SP Authentic Hockey has a small 100-card base set that is augmented by several subsets. Authentic Moments and All-Time Moments return at a rate of 1:13 packs with multi-player versions seeded once in every 50 packs. Added to the lineup are SP Legends (1:5), but the big draw, as always, are the Future Watch rookie cards. Coming in both unsigned and autographed editions that are numbered to 999, this season’s freshman lineup is sure to be adequately represented. Some of the Future Watch cards will come with an Inscription variation (/50). Finally, there are 30 Franchise Icons (/199) cards.
All of these cards will also have parallels. Future Watch Limited Autographs (/100) are more plentiful than the regular and Future Watch Limited (/25). Franchise Icons Limited are numbered to just 10.
Digging back 20 years into this brand’s legacy are the 1995-96 SP Retro inserts. With a design that still stands up today, regular veteran players come twice per box on average while SP Retro Legends (1:60) and SP Retro Premier Prospects (1:12) are tougher pulls. Should the cards be reproduced on the foil stock that the originals were printed on, they could be chased by collectors who loved the set when it first arrived in card stores.
Upper Deck successfully integrated the idea of adding more cards to the flagship Upper Deck release and there will once again be an Update Set inserted into 2015-16 Upper Deck SP Authentic Hockey. Picking up where 2015-16 Upper Deck Series 2 Hockey left off, there will be veteran players reflecting late-season trades (1:6.5 packs) along with missed rookies for the Young Guns subset (1:12.5). Each of these cards also has an Exclusives (/100) and High Gloss (/10) parallel.
Sign of the Times has been a mainstay inside packs of SP Authentic since it was re-branded back from its predecessor Upper Deck SP in 1997-98. This year, the line continues with single signatures coming in two tiers (1:60 and 1:140) that also have Inscribed variations (varied numbering). Multi-signature Sign of the Times are going to be limited in nature this season with Duals being the most plentiful (/25) and they become tougher as hobbyists look for Trios (/15), Quads (/10), Sixes (/6), and Eighths (/5).
New to 2015-16 Upper Deck SP Authentic Hockey are Sign of the Times Rookies. Produced in three levels of scarcity (/99, /199, or /299), some have the Inscription version like the veteran Sign of the Times cards. There are some other concepts making their debut this season and include Global Chirography (1:180), Great White North (1:240), and Scripted Stoppers (1:480) while Marks of Distinction Gold Spectrum (/25) and Immortal Inks (/10) return as long-odds hits.
Rounding out the signed cards are Limited Autographs for the regular cards (/25 or /99), SP Legends (varied numbers), Authentic Moments (1:1,000 for single players, 1:18,000 for multiple players), and All-Time Moments (1:2,000 for single players, 1:13,333 for multiple players). As a new twist, there are Authentic Moments booklets (1:5,000) that can create a buzz. The 1995-96 Retro cards also get a Gold Autograph treatment with regular players (1:640), legends (1:6,400), and Premier Prospects (1:320) putting their pens down on cards with an old-school feel.
SP Authentic has not traditionally been the place to find a plethora of memorabilia cards, but there are some to be found in 2015-16. Future Watch Limited Patches (/100) have long been a hobby favorite and this year, they have a 2005-06 Retro parallel which looks back to the rookie season of stars like Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin. Several base set cards will also have a Limited Autograph Patch that comes in three different tiers numbered to either 100, 25, or 10.