While doing some Black Friday shopping last week, I stopped by my LCS to pick up a few things. I've already written about by Black Friday packs and the Rookies and Stars Football box I had to purchase to get them. Here's the box of hockey cards I picked up to go along with it.
With the 2012-13 hockey card year so young, pretty much the only products out there are Score, Certified, Upper Deck, and Artifacts. I've purchased Certified and Artifacts already, and enjoyed both, but being a Panini guy, I decided to go with another (this would be my third) box of Certified.
Without further ado, here are the hits:
I must be perfectly honest, I was pretty disappointed in the hits at first. There's a Freshman Signatures autograph, which is fine, but my other auto was one I just pulled a couple of weeks ago!!! The relics were ok, but nothing too spectacular.
My opinion soon turned when I did a little more research. If you'll notice, the Dylan Prout and Frans Nielsen card have some low serial numbers (/50 and /75). As it turns out, I had stumbled upon a "Hot Box."
I haven't been able to nail down any concrete details of what a Hot Box entails, but from what I understand, it basically ensures that your box is filled with rarer-than-usual inserts, like the Prout and Nielsen.
What it also means is that every pack contains special refractory Hot Box parallels in place of the base cards. Here's a look at the regular (left) and Hot Box (right) versions.
I'm not sure how I feel about this, as it basically ensures that NONE of these "base" cards can be put toward the base set that I'm building. On the other hand, they can be flipped on Ebay for a decent amount, which would allow me to purchase those base cards, plus a few extras.
I also got two other "Hot Box" cards, a mirror gold Taylor Hall and a Riley Sheahan rookie card. The Hall might not be a Hot Box card, and its rarity (14/25) may be coincidental, but the Sheahan (91/99) is definitely a Hot Box variation.
I also received three non-Hot Box Inserts: Mike Bossy Immortals 818/999, Henrik Zetterberg Certified Stars 78/999, and Stephen Weiss/Martin Brodeur 230/99.
While I won't be collecting the set of Hot Box parallels and won't be including them in the base set I'm working on, I am keeping these 6 for my player collections. I also pulled a Ryan Getzlaf that will be heading over to Greg Z. The other 35 will be hitting Ebay at some point soon.