Sunday, December 15, 2019

2019-20 O-Pee-Chee: 18-Pack Break

I had a second chance of diving into some of Upper Deck's 2019-20 O-Pee-Chee cards via a silent auction benefiting youth hockey, so I took another stab at adding another 144 cards to my collection, in addition to the 10 packs from last month.

My initial reaction was that these were nice cards to get signed, but this time around I realized the collation out of the 600-plus-card set is terrible: I already have four sets of triples - Neal Pionk, Deryk Engelland, Seth Jones and Andy Greene - and a bunch of doubles.

At least the inserts were all new, starting with the Blue Border Parallels of Gabriel Landeskog, Nikolaj Ehlers, and Joe Thornton:
As always, I could do without Season Highlights cards, even these of Carey Price and John Tavares:
The five "regular-issue" Marquee Rookies (Blake Lizotte, Taro Hirose, Kevin Stenlund, Victor Olofsson and Ryan Poehling) were nice pulls:
The five Caramel Minis, however, had the most and best name recognition, with Jonathan Toews, Leon Draisaitl, Blake Wheeler, Claude Giroux and Evgeni Malkin:
I also landed eight "regular" Retro cards, of Andreas Athanasiou, Alex Goligoski, Brayden Coburn, Drake Batherson, Cal Clutterbuck, Jonathan Drouin, Matt Niskanen and John Carlson:
As you can see, the background colours don't really follow any pattern: players from the same team can have different ones, and the same can be said for the positions they play.

There were two more Retro cards, however, from other sub-sets, namely Marquee Rookies (Nathan Bastian) and Season Highlights (Jesperi Kotkaniemi):
When I was a kid, the inserts really took away from the main sets, but for OPC, they dive into it so deeply all-in that it becomes the highlight of the set; their 1950s, 1960s and 1970s-inspired designs also have their charm.

The collation tempts me into lowering my initial grade for the set, but I won't go that far as of yet, and the inserts give me so many more autograph options that I'm willing to forget about it. I'm happy with this purchase.

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