While Upper Deck receives a lot of negativity for a lot of different things, there are two things that they do right: Hockey and Goodwin Champions. I have been collecting this set for the previous two releases (2009 and 2011), but truthfully, I didn't even know they were doing a 2012 release until just a couple of weeks ago. Even still, I was considering skipping this year, due to an attempt at scaling down the amount of sets I am trying to collect.
My hopes of trimming Goodwin Champions off of my radar were quickly dashed when I started seeing boxes being opened. The Daily Dimwit pulled relics of Wendell Clark and Dale Hawerchuk and a SUPER RARE Steven Stamkos auto, and Nachos Grande pulled a Brendan Shanahan relic. This product appeared to me to be LOADED with hockey, which was all the convincing I needed.
I picked up just one box, and although I didn't pull any hockey hits, I was ECSTATIC to find a David Robinson 1/1 printing plate. With all the different cards of all the different athletes, I would say I got pretty lucky in pulling a plate from such a big superstar. The other great thing about the plate is that it is the black variation, which gives it the most true-to-form look from a visual perspective.
Now the back of the plate actually says that the plate was used in the production of the card, but I have two questions related to that. 1. Do companies even use printing plates in production anymore? I would imagine they would have a bit more of an advanced method. 2. If the plate was used to put the ink on the cardboard, wouldn't the plate image need to be in reverse? The one I have here is in the same direction as the card. Maybe there's a different method they use that allows the wording and photo to be going in the same direction.
My three promised hits, which usually work out to be 1 auto and 2 relics, were baseball player Aaron Altherr football player Tim Brown, and soccer player Brian Ching. The Tim Brown is actually a pretty decent pull, but I've never heard of the other two.
Each box also has a World Traveler jumbo box topper, which focuses on a different country. Mine is the Czech Republic. Not much else to say about it.
The only non-parallel insert is Military Machines, which gives information on different vehicles used by the U.S. Military. Mine were the M4 Sherman and F105 Thunderchie. I won't be pursuing these, so if anyone wants them, let me know.
Another thing I like about Goodwin is that there isn't a mini in EVERY pack. While I don't hate them, I really have no use for them, so if I can get less minis and more cards for the base set, I consider that a good thing.
I pulled 11 hockey card for the base set, which means that either I got a good box, or there are THAT MANY hockey players in 2012 Goodwin Champions. Either way, I was happy to see such a large hockey presence in my box.
First box in, and I was very happy with what I pulled. I get the feeling that I'll be buying a LOT of this over the next couple of months.