2013 Fleer Retro Basketball: Where Do We Go From Here?

Upper Deck purchased the license for Fleer products years ago, with a desire to pick up on the history built by the brand before their bankruptcy in the middle 2000s. Funny enough, they never really used it appropriately until the release of Fleer Retro back in the middle of last year. It turned out to be one of the biggest surprises of the year, with some cards being worth thousands of dollars.

Not surprisingly, Upper Deck brought it back for another year, this time with added designs from other years of the Metal and Skybox brands. Although I think the precious metal gems are VASTLY improved in the choice of their available designs, the rest of the set is not as strong.

2013 Fleer Retro Michael Jordan Auto SSP

2013 Fleer Retro Michael Jordan Precious Metal Gems Blue /100

2013 Fleer Retro LeBron James Fresh Ink Auto

Here is the thing, the 1990s was when Skybox and Fleer were as strong as they ever were, and yet I don’t see much going on here that really say this year will perform similarly to 2012. Since Fleer Retro has already been done in both Football and Hockey as well, its only a matter of time before they have to figure out how to make this product last more than a few years.

Additionally, with no true timeframe on these products because the rookies are rarely involved, I have no idea why there wouldn’t be more on card autos. There is zero reason why Upper Deck isn’t planning in advance to get the cards to the players to sign on card. Think about how incredible this set could be with more on card autos.

The true gem of the product is the buyback autos that are back for another year, but they are so rare that it might not even be worth mentioning. They are truly impressive for the ones that have popped up so far, but again, these are about as rare as they come.

I will say, its unfortunate that this isn’t officially licensed by the leagues, because I honestly believe the potential is limited otherwise.

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