Many are referring to 2014-15 Upper Deck Premier Hockey as a warm-up for The Cup. And for good reason. The product is all about the high-end with lots of autographs, patches and low-numbered, premium content.
Much of the attention is on the Acetate Autograph Patch Rookies. These will likely go down as some of the top rookie cards of the year for hockey. Given the cards' construction, on-card autographs and large patch swatches, it'll be interesting to see if The Cup can actually top them.
A handful of stars and Hall of Famers have similar Acetate Autograph Patch cards, although in much smaller quantities. The combination of the strong checklist and the fact that these players don't have much that's similar should make for long-term interest.
Digging deeper into 2014-15 Upper Deck Premier Hockey, other popular elements include inscribed autographs and Mega Patch cards that take up virtually the entire front of the card. The look of these is similar to the popular Prime Colors cards from Panini Prime Hockey.
On the strictly autograph side of things, there are a couple of veteran- and retired-player sets drawing attention. Rinks of Honor uses a book card format to showcase the arena where the featured player starred. In some ways, they're just as much a tribute to the franchise as they are the player. Signature Champions is dedicated entirely to players hoisting the Stanley Cup.
Below is a real-time list of the most-watched 2014-15 Upper Deck Premier Hockey cards currently up for auction on eBay. It might not reflect the most valuable cards, but it does showcase what's drawing the most interest. The list does update on its own so you can check back and see new cards as they're listed.