Thursday, May 19, 2011

ONE SHEET, ONE SET - 2005/06 Upper Deck Rookie Update

The huge sports collectibles show that passed through town last weekend garnered some great cards for my various collections.

While there were some bigger ticket items, there was a chance to pick up some cheap base and insert cards for my 'One Sheet, One Set' project.

I snagged a couple singles to finish off this sheet and it caught my eye today when deciding which one to focus on.

2005/06 Upper Deck
Rookie Update

OK.....stay with me while I explain this release.

This 277 card set starts off with 100 base cards of current players. The next 95 cards feature the rookies and the final 82 cards highlight multi-player rookie cards (but they have both a rookie and a veteran player on it). Cards 101-275 are all serial numbered (some to 1999, some to 999, some to 499 and a couple of them to 199).

Got it? Good.

Now you can forget all of it as I am only going to be focusing on the base cards from 1-100. :)

This is an eye catching set from a 'first look' standpoint. The colors definitely pop out at you.

Obviously the colors go in conjunction with the team colors and I really like the way this is incorporated into the entire design. They look good in the 9-page sheet.

The front of the card has got some good attention to detail and is more complex than it looks.

We touched on the team colored background, but there is also a slight marbled effect blended into it. It emanates from the center of the card and thus I will refer to it as the 'exploding marble effect'. For the record, I like it.

There is a silver foil Upper Deck logo in the top left and some more silver foil along the bottom highlighting the set name. A little bit of foil texture right at the bottom edge frames the team logo which is over black.

The frame for the player is a simple, but unique shape and has a bit of an embossed border (always in silver). It's got a hint of metal texture to it and works with the foil to create a bit of dynamics.

On the right side is the player name and on the left is the position and player number. The font used for this is not bad (very simple and unobtrusive).

Now on to the photo. Some have decent action shots, but mostly it's the stock full body shot. The player is cutout from the background to allow for three things. The player can be placed on top of the frame (as shown by the head and the stick), the background can be hit with a hint of blur (creating even greater separation) and the background can be given a bit of color overlay (again in the team color).

All three of these elements work really well when combined and meshes the card front together quite nicely.

The back of the card utilizes a number of elements from the front, but is distinct enough to give it a unique feel.

Sadly, the same photo is used. There is no color on the background, but the exploding marble effect remains (it's tough to see on some cards). The card number sits almost awkwardly in the top left corner.

The stats board continues the embossed look, but introduces the team color in the top and bottom border. A nice switch up.

The name font is consistent with the front, but the position utilizes lower case letters. And all of the sudden, the team name makes an appearance...weird.

The simple logo on black remains (nothing special, but not ugly either). And then the stats.

Only 5 years of stats are shown - max. A bit of a waste if you ask me. Look at all of that empty space at the top of the card.

The stats in general are a little lacking. Nothing about where the player was born or when they were drafted. It's tough to find a happy medium between being too simple and cluttered, but I think a little more would have helped.

Lastly, the ever popular row of logos along the bottom. Meh.

Overall, it's a nice looking set. The 100 card base set would make a nice addition to any set builders collection and singles could be had pretty cheap. The most expensive card in the deck is Mario Lemieux (which books at $4.00) and Steve Yzerman and Martin Brodeur (which books at $2.50 each). But I can't see anyone slapping those prices on these cards. Most could be had for a quarter or less.

The card front gets the bulk of the points, while the card back kills a higher rating from me.

3.5 out of 5

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