Bob is a longtime member of the Florida sports media, having served as a reporter and copy editor for more than 30 years. His true sports passion, however, is the history of the various games, exhibited by his in-depth book reviews and hobby of collecting cards and other sports memorabilia. He blogs for TBO.com on both subjects, transferring his work for the Tampa Tribune to the realm of cyberspace.
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Panini’s Starting 5 promotion begins today
Posted Dec 1, 2012 by Bob D'Angelo
Updated Mar 27, 2013 at 10:16 PM
Here’s a starting lineup that even NBA commissioner David Stern might even find palatable.
Panini America’s Starting 5 program is returning after a year’s absence, and more than 250 hobby shops nationwide are participating in the promotion, which began today.
Each week during the month of December, five players will be designated as that week’s Starting 5. Collectors who pull the cards of those five players at their local hobby shop will win a special pack of Panini Starting 5 cards. And Panini will up the ante during the fourth week of December, issuing gold packs that will include randomly inserted autographs and a special contest card in every pack. Those cards could contain prizes for items like Panini’s Rated Rookie T-shirts and Panini Authentic memorabilia.
But check with your local hobby shop dealer. I called a few shops — not all — today. Triple Play in South Tampa is not doing the promotion while at Mike’s Sports Connection in Largo, the dealer had not heard of it.
If you want to drive to Polk County, then Lakeland Sports Cards at 3114 S. Florida Ave. will have it when the shop reopens on Wednesday (it is closed Sunday through Tuesday).
As part of the promotion, Panini is urging collectors to go to PaniniStarting5.com and enter in a sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to the 2013 NBA All-Star Game. Another big prize is a trip to the 2013 NBA rookie photo shoot.
Here is the starting lineup for this week (Dec. 1-8): Kyrie Irving, Brandon Knight, Harrison Barnes, Thomas Robinson and Austin Rivers.
For the week of Dec. 9-15, the players are Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Derrick Williams, Jared Sullinger.
and Andre Drummond. Here are the starters for Dec. 16-22: John Henson, Bradley Beal, Dion Waiters, Kawhi Leonard and Iman Shumpert.
And for the final week (Dec. 23-29), your starters will be Bryant, Blake Griffin, Kevin Durant, Griffin (from packs of 2011-12 Limited Basketball) and Durant (from packs of 2011-12 Gold Standard Basketball).
Those are some fairly impressive starting fives. That should make the holiday season more fun for collectors, too.