I still find it baffling that Panini can succeed with this product without Jordan or Lebron Autos. I also find it baffling that people will pay the extra money JUST because the player quality in a box is much more increased over a product like National Treasures. Although there are logos for the first time this year in Flawless, and the design does look great, it seems overpriced for content that is available in other products. To this day, no Flawless set has offered anything that is so unique that it makes up for the price tag. I guess a better collation rate of big names is worth paying the extra money to a lot of people. I dont get it personally.
Even with all my reservations, this is definitely “one of those products” that is more of an event each year:
Now, at 1650 per box, you would expect that hitting a Wiggins patch auto would net you more money than hitting one out of Treasures, especially considering it A) Looks a million times better, and B) is lower numbered on the base parallel. That isnt the way it looks to be working out, especially once the initial release bump cools off. Similarly, if you dont hit one of the nicer rookies in your box, its going to be more and more likely you will take greater than a 40% loss overall. That isnt terrible for a high end product in the least, but again, basketball is just a crazy sport.
NOTE: I havent seen Jabari Parker with any listed autographs yet. That is concerning to me if he is not on the checklist.
Similarly, there are some really questionable names on this checklist, something that Panini has made a name for themselves on with sets of this cost. Although the overall collation provides better hits at a much better rate than a box of treasures, man some of these non-RC players are shitty as hell. They definitely do not belong on this checklist and I would argue that even having them as part of NT would be a slap in the face.
My favorite cards in the whole product are the momentous auto patches, which like NT feature a horizontal orientation and a 1×2 patch. The cards are easily some of the better looking cards I have seen come out of a Panini product this year. The issue is that they look almost identical to ones you can pull out of NT, which again seems odd to me. Although the ones in NT are rookies /10, Flawless should offer something unique. It should offer something that isnt available anywhere else. I feel so strongly about this, even though as said before, the cards look really fucking cool. If I am going to spend the money, I feel like I should get something that is special – more than just a better chance of getting the Durants and Shaqs. If Jordan or Lebron were to make their debut, we would have a different story, but that isnt the case.
I have said over and over again, that I know people love this product. I know people will PAY for this product, so I cant fault Panini for trotting it out year after year. That being said, I dont think we have seen anywhere close to what COULD have been done with it. If Upper Deck ever gets a license back, there will be some serious fireworks if they decide to try their hand. Obviously, that isnt in the cards at the moment.