Food, Cars, and Underwear – In 1998 $26,000 Could’ve Gotten You One Of These MJ Cards

Walmart, Target, and Kohl’s have seen an increase in foot traffic recently.  Underwear can be thanked for that.  Michael Jordan has been a key spokesman for Hanes for 30 years.  To celebrate, Hanes teamed-up with Upper Deck who created a special set of cards.  These exclusive cards can only be found in specially marked Hanes products.  Upper Deck went with the 1988-89 Fleer Basketball design.  (10) Michael Jordan autographs have been thrown in.  They fall 1:108,625 packs.  A complete base set consists of (50) cards with Red and Blue Foil parallels.  All-Star inserts which have Gold Foil parallels are also possible to pull.

Over the years we’ve seen some incredible sales of Michael Jordan cards.  His 1986-87 Fleer rookie is a hobby icon.  Recently a 1997 Metal Universe Precious Metal Gems Green #’ed/10 parallel of his sold for $350,100.  Collectors go crazy for his stuff.  I can’t wait to see what one of those Hanes autographs sells for.  My guess is $500-$1,000.

In 1998, one of the more interesting Michael Jordan cards was created.  A Chevy dealership in Chicago worked with Upper Deck and produced a small 2-card set.  How were you suppose to obtain one of these cards?  That’s simple.  All you needed to do was purchase a new 1998 Chevy Blazer for $26,000.  Along with the keys to your new purchase, you’ed be handed one of the two cards.  It doesn’t end there folks.  Those cards came with a nice little perk.  You could exchange them for a dinner in a glassed-in room at Michael Jordan’s Restaurant.

Either not many people purchased Chevy Blazers from that dealership, or they did and decided to cash-in on the dinner offer.  Very few of these cards exist today.  Restaurant staff most likely threw them away.

Condition can be a big issue.  They were handled a lot.  Gem mint examples can sell for $600 per card.

Reprints also are a problem.  Based on the reprints I’ve seen, ones of Michael Jordan in the “looking down” pose have a black border around the edge on both the front and back.  Reprints of the “smiling” pose seem to just have this border on the reverse.

Michael Jordan’s Restaurant is still open.  According to the cards, you’re suppose to call 312-644-DUNK (3865) ext. 227 to make reservations.  I called the number, but its been disconnected.  Their new number is (630) 828-2932.

I’d love to see someone pull up to his restaurant today in their 1998 Chevy Blazer, whip out one of these cards, and ask for their meal.

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Flashback Product of the Week: 1991 Panini Action Cards 100 Dream Cars

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During the early 90’s, Panini of Canada had a division called Action Cards.  Action Cards produced a handful of card products based on very expensive cars.  One of their earliest products is the 100 Dream Cars set.  Its pretty straight forward meaning it doesn’t contain any chase cards or SPs.  Each card in the set features a full color photo on the front with a short description on the back.  Boxes contain 36 packs, and you can barely give them away to collectors.  Sealed boxes can easily be found for under $10.00.  Action Cards went on to produce a few more Dream Cars and Antique Cars sets, but eventually flamed out.

You know, I’m surprised one of today’s manufacturers doesn’t bring this idea back.  I’m not saying create an entire product based on cars, but they could throw some relics in their stranger sets.  People like you and me will probably never be able to afford to own fancy cars like this.  But wouldn’t it be cool to own a card with a piece in it?  At least you could tell people that you own part of a Lamborghini 🙂  That would bring the ladies running.

Flashback Product of the Week: 1970 Topps Mini Model Cars

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The Topps name has never really been associated with any type of racing product.  They’ve issued various products based on cars, boats, and even trains, but 1970 Topps Mini Model Cars has to be one of their crazier sets.

Inside each pack you’ll find one model car that needs to put together.  They are made out of very cheap material, and look nothing like what is pictured on the package.  Along with the model car came an insert card.  When all twenty-one insert cards are placed on the floor it creates a race rack.  Some packs contain Soda Fountain Car cards.  Not too much is known about these, but it looks like they might have leaded into another product with its own line of toy cars.

Surprisingly this product didn’t survive.  The cars aren’t worth much.  Collectors are more attached to the packaging than anything.  Sealed boxes can sell for around $100.00.

For further information about 1970 Topps Mini Model Cars, check out The Topps Archives.