It’s not uncommon in this scene for a post like this to start “So I was at Target today…” And that’s where this post starts.
Went to the Target in Dedham, MA today with my partner. We were there to pick up some stuff off our brother/sister-in-law’s baby shower registry. I shot over to where the cards are usually located (on the peg board wall at the end of check out) and I was actually confused. There was nothing. I saw an end cap with a gaunt selection of Magic, Pokemon and Yugioh. And honestly, it may have only been Pokemon and Yugioh. I did eventually find a small selection of Topps 2019 baseball (series 1 and 2), some repack boxes of football and basketball, and some blaster boxes of 2019-20 Upper Deck MVP hockey. I’m starting to get into the mood for hockey, we’re getting ready to pick our games for our partial Providence Bruins season ticket plan. So I felt like it was time to open up some hockey cards. I haven’t done any research on Upper Deck hockey this season, but I like opening cards.
I was only a couple packs in when I realized that MVP is equivalent to Topps’ Big League set baseball set. Clearly developed and marketed for younger fans. It looks like an easy set to complete. The cards are very well designed, but stripped down.
The base set design looks like it might be mildly inspired by stock Twitch overlays. There are relatively few insert sets. Doesn’t look like there are any relic cards to chase and only one set of authentic autographs (all numbered to 25).
There are a couple different stamped auto parallels, which will condition younger fans to be excited to hit an auto card. Based on the odds list, each box should be worth about a hit and a half per pack. Which for 8 card packs is pretty high.
Design continuity is pretty good through the cards I saw. The auto parallels feature the base design with either a white or black area for silver or gold signatures. The subsets (Supernova, Lazer Shot and Net Crashers) stand out but still fit the design of the base set. The Stanley Cup Edition subset is a very nicely designed 100 card sub, but stylistically are the only cards that have a truly unique design from the base.
The back of the cards feature some nicely presented, but basic bio & stat information. I do like the phonetic spelling for each player’s name. The card quality is also incredibly high. Full color, high gloss on both sides for all cards with really nice image quality.
My only complaint is on the puzzle piece cards. They stamp the front of the card with the card number, team/NHL/NHLPA logos and the back of card legal information right in the middle of the front of the card.
Overall, this is a great set to introduce your kid to collecting hockey cards. Might also be a good set for IP/TTM autograph collectors. The images are great and bright and would show an autograph very nicely.