Monday, March 2, 2015

2014 Upper Deck March Madness basketball blaster

Sport:  Basketball
Product:  2014 Upper Deck March Madness blaster
Break Date:  February 27, 2015
Hit Breakdown:   No guaranteed hits
Summary:  I'm mainly a basketball collector, and my personal collection revolves around Florida Gator alumni, so I was pretty excited for Upper Deck's March Madness product to hit shelves. I know that buying blasters is generally way more miss than hit when it comes to landing an autograph or something, but that didn't stop me from having my wife pick one up when she was at Target.

I knew from looking at the checklist that there weren't a few of my Gators in the product; in fact, Patric Young is it, I think. But, the odds on the box state that there is one auto for every 24 packs, so at the very least you have a decent enough chance of pulling something nice.

This blaster, though, didn't deliver. In fact, it didn't deliver anything.

There are two kinds of people who buy sports cards - those who do it to flip what they pull for money, and those that are collectors. I tend to gravitate towards the collector-type, so not pulling an autograph wasn't a big deal. But I can say for certainty that anyone who is indeed trying to make a buck should probably stay away from March Madness.

My gripe comes with the product as a whole. I opened 12 packs with nothing to show for it - no parallels and no autograph. It was 12 packs worth of base cards (and no Patric Young). There are short prints in the set, but they come one per pack – I'm not really certain how you can call something that's one per pack a short print. The Sepia parallels are supposed to be 1:6 packs, but I didn't pull any (although those odds may be for hoppy, not retail).

I did pull two of the Bracketology scratch-off game cards, but the game itself seems really hard to win. If I read correctly you need to nail the exact region and seeding in order to win anything. I pulled St. John's and UCLA. At 20-9, St. John's should get into the tourney and UCLA seems like it also at 18-12. However, if I had pulled, say, my Florida Gators I'd have had a useless piece of cardboard because there's no shot at them getting into the NCAA tournament shy of winning the conference tournament, and with Kentucky in the SEC, that seems like a pipe dream.

On the plus side, once again Upper Deck designed a strong product, aesthetically. The photos are great, and the player name overlays and the card back look really nice.

But, outside of that, there's no real reason to pick this product up, I don't think. I'll always buy something once to give it a shot, but I can say with relative certainty that this will be the only shot I take at March Madness. I'd be better served just buying the Patric Young auto and base card off eBay - it'd be cheaper than the $19.99 price tag on the box. If I had pulled an auto I know this review would be different, but as it stands, it's the worst break I've had, and the only reason the product on the whole got a C was because of the 1:24 auto odds.

Grade for the product:  C
Grade for the break:  D-

Bracketology Scratch-Off:  St. John's, UCLA

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