Buzz 12 in 12: Busting a 2011 Topps American Pie blaster box (Hour 5)

Do you like Buzz Breaks? Today’s your day then as we launch 12 in 12 — a series of a dozen breaks of past wax boxes and wax packs in a dozen hours. We’ll post one every hour on the hour all day long today … this is Hour 5.

12in12-logo-smallerThe box: 2011 Topps American Pie trading cards blaster box
The cost:

What’s inside this one? Keep reading …

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Dick Enberg’s legendary career includes very few card appearances

One of the familiar voices in all of the sports world — a long-time broadcaster for NBC, CBS and ESPN who covered Wimbledon 28 times, covered 10 Super Bowls and covered eight NCAA men’s basketball championships along with much, much more — has been silenced.

Dick Enberg was 82.

Despite a Hall of Fame career and plenty of time in homes on TV since the 1960s when he covered John Wooden‘s UCLA Bruins, he’s only got a handful of sports card appearances from the past — and, of those, really only one is easy to find.

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Legend of ‘The Nature Boy’ Ric Flair takes real turn tonight on ESPN

He styled. He profiled. He wrestled around the world and made millions “Woooooooooo!”

The limousine riding and jet flying is a bit less chaotic these days, but the boisterous story of “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair — or, really, the real-life story of Richard Fliehr — will get the spotlight tonight at 10 p.m. on ESPN.

It’s a 30 For 30 documentary that’s been in the works for months — long before his recent health scare nearly ended his life at age 68. It’s a piece that promises to explore the man, the myth, the legend — and where that’s led him to today. (And to be the man, you still have to beat the man … he’s not done yet.)

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Board Buzz: Must-read threads on the Blowout Forums (Oct. 17)

The Blowout Cards Forums are where thousands of collectors converge daily to discuss, well, a little bit of everything. Here are a few threads about collecting and more that you should check out right now.

What’s Buzzing Today: Big pulls, big possibilities in MLB and “the world’s greatest forger.”

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Board Buzz: Must-read threads on the Blowout Forums (Aug. 10)

The Blowout Cards Forums are where thousands of collectors converge daily to discuss, well, a little bit of everything. Here are a few threads about collecting and more that you should check out right now.

What’s Buzzing Today: A huge autograph steal that you can get in on, big breaks, quirky cards, unusual autograph items & plenty more.

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Buzz 12 in 12: Busting a 2001 Topps XFL football hobby box (Hour 2)


Do you like Buzz Breaks? Today’s your day then as we launch 12 in 12 — a series of a dozen breaks of past wax boxes and wax packs in a dozen hours. We’ll post one every hour on the hour all day long today … and this is Hour 2.

12in12-logo-smallerThe pack: 2001 Topps XFL football cards (hobby box) 
The cost now: 
The cost then: $1.99/pack, $47.76/box

What’s inside this box? Keep reading …

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Maybe you have the Honus Wagner of Nintendo games sitting at home …


A little-known Nintendo game then is a well-known Nintendo game now — at least to serious collectors who are known to fork over plenty of cash for it.

It’s Stadium Events, and it’s a game that’s so serious for collectors that in its original packaging it evokes comparisons to someone you might know if you’re into baseball cards.

“I never had a Honus Wagner,” said Tod Curtis, a Bedford, Ind.-based orthodontist, who seriously collects NES games and was interviewed as part of an ESPN The Magazine story on this game and its legacy. “That’s what this game is to this hobby. I don’t know how many Honus Wagner cards are out there compared to how many Stadium Events there are. If the game is really that rare, you can see in 20 years it coming up at Christie’s, where people are going to pay $900,000.”

The story is a fascinating one with plenty of parallels to the card-collecting world, and, not surprisingly, the tale has prompted the attempted sale of a high-grade copy of the game.

You probably won’t believe the asking price right now on eBay. 

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Veteran ESPN voice and broadcaster John Saunders dies at 61


One of ESPN’s longest-running on-air talents and a memorable voice for countless sports moments has been silenced as John Saunders has died. He was 61.

The Canadian was a junior hockey All-Star and played one game at Western Michigan before a career in broadcasting that began in 1978. He joined ESPN in December 1986 where he had worked ever since as a SportsCenter anchor, studio host and the lead for shows such as The Sports Reporters.

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If Tom Jackson calls it a career, maybe he’ll have time for cardboard

Tom-Jackson-1997-Upper-Deck-LegendsHe’s been in the public eye as an NFL player and ESPN analyst every year since 1973, but Tom Jackson may finally have time to do something he’s rarely done before.

Sign autographs for a card company and appear on some football cards.

The New York Daily News is reporting that Jackson may be leaving ESPN, where he’s been part of NFL broadcasts since 1987. It’s been a successful run, and, in 2015, he received the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Pete Rozelle Radio-Television Award which honors “longtime exceptional contributions to radio and television in professional football.”

Jackson’s NFL career ended the season before his ESPN arrival and it’s a career that’s rarely seen on cardboard despite an explosion in card products in all those years since.

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Buzz Break: 2016 Topps Allen & Ginter baseball cards (blaster box)

s-l1600-2From time to time, Buzz will break a box of something and post the results here. Like this and want to see more? Or maybe there’s a box you’d want to see busted? Send Buzz an email at

The box: 2016 Topps Allen & Ginter baseball cards (blaster box)
MazaraWhere to buy:

Packs per box: 8
Cards per pack: 6
Cards in this box: 47
Base set completion: 
26 of 300 (9 percent)
Duplicates: 0

Notables on base cards – Tom Glavine, Robinson Cano, Monica Abbott, Jacob deGrom, Michelle Steele

Rookie Cards (9) – Nomar Mazara, Stephen Piscotty, Aaron Nola, Guido Knudson, Zach Lee, Dustin Garneau, Hector Olivera, Raul Mondesi, Richie Shaffer

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ESPN’s Jessica Mendoza gets a 2016 Topps Allen & Ginter baseball card

MendozaShe’s a former Stanford softball All-American and a member of the U.S. Olympic team that won gold in Athens. She’s a former fastpitch softball pro and a pioneer for women in the broadcast booth for ESPN as its first female analyst for MLB games.

She’s Jessica Mendoza and she’s going to be found in packs of 2016 Topps Allen & Ginter.

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Father’s Day is perfect day to learn more about Ernie Johnson

ernie-johnson-voices-of-game-autoYou probably know him as the host of Inside the NBA, the postgame show for NBA on TNT broadcasts, but there’s a lot you may not know about Ernie Johnson that are perfect for this Father’s Day.

Ernie-Johnson-1954-BowmanThose around the Atlanta area may know that he’s the son of a former Milwaukee Braves pitcher and long-time Atlanta Braves announcer, Ernie Johnson Sr., who, after a nine-year MLB career, covered the team for more than 30 years. He’s one of 29 members of the Atlanta Braves Hall of Fame after he was inducted in 2001.

The father appears on nearly 30 baseball cards with his Rookie Card coming in the 1954 Bowman set and his final regular-issue card in the 1960 Topps set. The son appears on just two cards — one in the 1990-91 Hoops Announcers set, which is a rare card for its era, and the 2014-15 Panini Threads Voices of the Game autograph above.

But all of this isn’t why Father’s Day is the perfect time to learn more about a broadcaster and three-time Emmy Award winner we’ve heard plenty from since 1989.

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Will “O.J.: Made in America” spark new interest in O.J. Simpson cards?

O.J.Simpson-1970-Topps-Rookie-CardThere’s no doubt that even after years out of the spotlight that O.J. Simpson remains one of the more-controversial and polarizing people on the planet, and we’ll get a new wave of discussion about the retired and incarcerated football star with the premiere of O.J.: Made in America, which is a five-part ESPN Films documentary, tonight on ABC.

01-oj-made-in-americaSimpson, of course, is behind bars for armed robbery and kidnapping after an altercation with a memorabilia dealer back in 2007. His acquittal in the deaths of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman — and the 1997 civil suit found Simpson liable for their deaths — will be one of the main focuses of the nearly eight-hour series.

Will the new story spark any added interest in his key cards? It’s very possible and people are seemingly already interested to some degree. His 1970 Topps Rookie Card (above) actually surged in value back during the first trial and there were non-NFL-licensed card companies that actually had him sign autographs while in jail. According to one advance account of the new documentary, those autographs signed in jail are discussed in the series.

“O.J. had only been in jail for two or three days when, per his agent Mike Gilbert, he gave instructions to start ‘marketing and merchandising and generating a lot of money,'” reads one advance review. “Gilbert and memorabilia dealer Bruce Fromong brought in fabric numbers for O.J. to sign, which would later be sewn into jerseys, and leather panels that would eventually become footballs. Demand, says Fromong, was through the roof, and as photographs reveal, an O.J. autograph signed from behind bars could go for hundreds of dollars.

“‘He sat in jail,’ says Fromong, ‘and we did $3-million dollars in autographs.’ One photograph of O.J. and Johnnie Cochran got both their signatures. ‘I look back,’ says Gilbert, ‘and think, this sucked. I can’t believe we did this.’”

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#DearPeyton videos look back at legendary QB’s hand-written habit

#DearPeytonFuture Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning had a habit of sorts through the years that a collector just might find interesting — and now it’s part of a viral video ad campaign and tribute to the former Vols, Colts and Broncos signal-caller.

His habit? He writes letters.

ESPN reporter Chris Mortensen takes a moment to discuss his letter from Manning as he battles cancer. Pam Frenzel recaps the moments her late son shared with the QB. Manning’s past coaches recap moments that prompted correspondence. His family members, his teammates and others also revisit their moments via Gatorade‘s series of videos.

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Michelle Beadle is staying at ESPN — who else there needs an auto?

Michelle-Beadle-Auto1ESPN announced today that it has signed Michelle Beadle to a new multi-year deal to keep her on the airwaves with SportsNation and a new national radio show.

Beadle is one of a small number of ESPN personalities who are non-athetes to appear on certified autographs as she’s appeared on cards from Panini America and Topps in recent years.

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