Monday, August 26, 2013

2013 Fan Expo Canada Sports Review

Always intrigued with Fan Expo Canada, this year they made it a little harder to pass up by adding a Sports Show. Over twenty plus sports guests signing and providing photo ops along with vendors and sports companies this was looking like it was going to challenge the semi-annual Sport Card Expo.
The cost to get into the show was only $10 which is a decent price and well received from others I spoke with. Panini and Upper Deck both had booths setup at the show. Vendors were spread out among many rows with corporate booths and setups in between.
Upper Deck had a front and center area where they were taking photos for personalized trading cards of fans at the show. They had a mini Stanley Cup and only Toronto Maple Leafs jerseys to put on in the photo. If you came with your own jersey on or just wanted a card in our street cloths than this worked out well. However if you were looking at another hockey team to put a jersey on of you were out of luck. If this setup comes to the Expo in November I hope they bring a few other teams to use in the photos.
They also handed out post cards of Nail Yakupov and Wayne Gretzky. Both are over sized cards but have blank backs to them, would have been great to have something on the back of the cards. No pack wrapper redemption's either for Upper Deck, their booth seemed to focus on the make your own card than anything else. Very cool concept but should have combined it with a wrapper redemption or more for collectors.

Frameworth had a nice setup. Their items are always nice, if just browsing through the pictures or picking one out they have the best captured photography to display for a collector.
Panini had a big setup at the show. Displaying some of the Prime hockey hits pulled from recent breaks as well as some redemption items to be had during the weekends wrapper redemption program. They had staff on hand to answer any questions and help with the redemption breaks.
I participated in the wrapper redemption which I purchased a box of Rookie Anthology to receive 10 redemption packs. Both the Rookie Anthology box and my wrapper redemption packs did very well. Came away with 6 hits from the Anthology box and the redemption packs gave me a set of the Franchise Greats, 3 Lava Flow cards, some of the Top Hot Rookies and a Grigorenko relic.
I also met Karvin Cheung from Panini for the first time. He is the Director of product development (NHL/NBA) at Panini. Really nice guy to chat about the hobby with and knows his stuff about anything Panini for hockey and basketball. Panini has always had a great representation at any show recently and they continue to provide the best to collectors.

One of the cool things I saw at the show was Hulk Hogan step up to his autograph area and show off his "pythons" to the crowd. The crowd loved it and was cool to see a guy you use to watch on TV or at a WWF (at the time) event. Was close enough to get a snap shot of him, dude is still really ripped!
Overall I think the show could have been better in the sense of a card collectors perspective. It had some great companies spread out across the rows with some unique and cool items but I find it lacked in the card collecting area. Now this was a sports show so I didn't expect it to be rows of card dealers, but I did expect it to have more than it did. I was a little disappointed with a couple of tables that seemed to not have any items for sale on their tables and were bare. A couple of other tables I felt like I was at a flea market and not a sports show. This I hope changes for the next show in 2014. In the end it was ok in the books of a sports show. I didn't pick up anything other than the 1 box of Anthology for the redemption's but again didn't intend to pick up anything else unless something stood out. Always first year shows have some improvements to be had and things to consider for the next show and I'm sure next year will be better and I will again attend. When it comes back in 2014 I'll be checking out the entire FanExpo and not just the sports side to experience the entire show as a whole. 

2 comments:

  1. I totally missed this show because the GF wanted to go to Cancun. Oh please I'd rather be at a card show! Really.
    Good info for next year and I have a heads up already.

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