2015 National Sports Collectors Convention Guide, Exclusive Cards & More

2015 National Sports Collectors Convention Guide, Exclusive Cards & More

Overview

As far as shows go, the National Sports Collectors Convention is the biggest in all the hobby. The annual event draws thousands of collectors from all over the United States and even some from different corners of the globe. There are so many dealers that covering the show in one day can be daunting. Running Wednesday, July 29 to Sunday, August 2 in Chicago, the 2015 National Sports Collectors Convention appears to be no different.

View full details on the 2016 National Sports Collectors Convention.

In addition to the more than 600 dealers on hand, collectors will have a chance to get autographs from players in all major sports. It's also a place to snag exclusive cards not available anywhere else.

But ask virtually all who have been to the National before, and they'll tell you the same thing. As cool as the cards and memorabilia are, it's the people that make the trip. This is especially true in today's digital world where you might not have a lot of local collecting buddies but have lots on Twitter, Facebook and online group breaks. The National provides plenty of opportunity to meet up and hang out.

Important 2015 National Sports Collectors Convention Details

National Sports Collectors Convention website

NSCC mobile app

Date: Wednesday, July 29 to Sunday, August 2

Where is it?: Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, IL.

Here's a map that shows the convention center as well as its proximity to hotels.

Hours:

  • Wednesday, July 29: 4PM to 8PM (sneak peek)
  • Thursday, July 30: 10AM to 6PM
  • Friday, July 31: 10AM to 6PM
  • Saturday, August 1: 10AM to 6PM
  • Sunday, August 2: 10AM to 5PM

Admission:

There are plenty of options for admission. If you're only planning to go for one day, there's basic admission. Various levels of VIP packages come with other perks like cards and other freebies, autographs from select guests and more. The best value is probably the Super VIP as it not only has more autograph opportunities but parking passes as well, which can add up.

All-Access VIP and Super VIP packages let holders go to the front of the autograph lines, which can get long for some signers.

Kids under 12 get free general admission throughout the 2015 National.

Complete details on admission prices and packages, as well as pre-orders, can be found on the National's website.

  • General Admission: $18/day in advance, $22/day at the show
  • Children (12 and under): Free
  • VIP Package: $129 in advance, $139 at the show
  • Super VIP Package: $179 in advance, $189 at the show
  • All-Access VIP: $229
  • All-Access Super VIP: $279

Other Events

Plenty is happening in Chicago during the 2015 National. Here are some of the special events that might be of interest:

Sports:

  • Chicago Cubs vs. Colorado Rockies - July 29
  • Manchester United vs. Paris Saint Germain - July 29
  • Chicago White Sox vs. New York Yankees - July 31 - Aug 2
  • Chicago Sky vs. Los Angeles Sparks July 31
  • Chicago Red Stars vs. FC Kansas City - Aug 1

Entertainment:

  • Shania Twain - July 29 at the Allstate Arena
  • Kevin Hart - July 30 at the United Center
  • Lollapallooza - July 31 - Aug 2
  • Hall & Oates - July 31 at RiverEdge Park
  • Kelly Clarkson - Aug 1 at Allstate Arena
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Exclusive Cards

2015 National Sports Collectors Convention Exclusive Cards

National-exclusive cards normally come in two forms. Small sets are included with VIP packages. Manufacturers usually have some sort of wrapper redemption or incentive for buying packs and boxes at the show. These come with separate exclusives.

Click on the link next to the company names below to shop for NSCC cards on eBay.

Leaf - Shop for 2015 NSCC Cards

Similar to the other manufacturers, Leaf has several options available to collectors at the 2015 NSCC.

VIP

VIP ticket holders will receive an exclusive group of rookie players from the world of baseball, football and hockey. There are also Silver (PR=500), Pink (PR=200), Gold (#/100) and Blue (#/25) parallels.

  • Brett Hundley
  • Bryce Petty
  • Connor McDavid
  • Dylan Strome
  • Jameis Winston
  • Kyle Schwarber
  • Marcus Mariota
  • Melvin Gordon
  • Mitchell Marner
  • Todd Gurley
  • Yoan Moncada

2015 Leaf National Sports Collectors Convention VIP McDavid

Wrapper Redemption

Additionally, collectors who open current boxes of Leaf products at their booth (#858) will receive special packs. For each box of 2015 Leaf Legends of Sport, 2015 Leaf Clear Football, 2015 Leaf Pop Century, 20115 Leaf In The Game Used, or 2015 Leaf Masterworks: Sports Edition, collectors will receive one pack that includes cards with the 1990 Leaf Baseball design. Autographs fall 1:7 packs.

2015 Leaf National Sports Collectors Convention Wrapper Autograph Federer

Case Break

Finally, collectors who break a case of any of the products noted above will receive a bonus autograph pack. Each pack is guaranteed to contain a signed card that is numbered to ten or less.

Panini - Shop for 2015 NSCC Cards

VIP Set

Panini is including six cards for VIP pass holders. All are rookies in their respective sports:

  • Kris Bryant
  • Marcus Mariota
  • Jahlil Okarfor
  • Joc Pederson
  • Karl-Anthony Towns
  • Jameis Winston

Wrapper Redemption

As with past years, Panini has created a comprehensive release for their wrapper redemption set. Besides a base set, there are several inserts, memorabilia cards and more. View full details on the set here.

Super Break - Shop for 2015 NSCC Cards

Super Break has a six-card promo set for VIP pass holders. Done in partnership with Onyx Authenticated, the checklist includes the following baseball prospects:

  • Yadier Alvarez
  • Greg Bird
  • Rafael Devers
  • Derek Fisher
  • Luis Severino
  • Bradley Zimmer

2015 Super Break NSCC Rafael Devers 2015 Super Break NSCC Alvarez

Topps - Shop for 2015 NSCC Cards

Box Redemptions

Topps has a couple of different redemption programs going.

Allen & Ginter - Shop for A&G cards on eBay

Those opening a box of 2015 Topps Allen & Ginter Baseball at the Topps booth get a special pack of of Allen & Ginter die-cut cards. Autographs are randomly inserted. Full details here.

2015 Topps NSCC AG Die-Cut Kris Bryant 2015 Topps NSCC AG Die-Cut Sayers

Gypsy Queen

Several other boxes are eligible for a three-card pack of 2015 Gypsy Queen cards of Kris Bryant, Byron Buxton and Carlos Correa. Each has parallels as well, including Silver (#/100), Gold (#/25), Red (#/5) and Black (1/1). A full list of eligible products for the Gypsy Queen cards can be seen on the Topps website.

VIP

Topps' VIP cards have been confirmed as the following five players:

  • Ernie Banks
  • Al Kaline
  • Willie Mays
  • Jackie Robinson
  • Ted Williams

Those with VIP passes get four of the cards, which means they'll have to track down and deal to complete the set.

The cards are based on the 1953 Bowman Color design.

Exclusives

Topps also has special 5x7 versions of their High Tek line with limited print runs. The cards feature a NSCC logo and include both baseball and football subjects.

2015 Topps NSCC National Sports Collectors Convention High Tek Jameis

Upper Deck - Shop for 2015 NSCC Cards

Upper Deck has three separate programs happening at the 2015 National, all of which revolve around the return of the Prominent Cuts brand.

VIP

Those with VIP tickets get a five-card set featuring Jerome Bettis, Wayne Gretzky, Michael Jordan, Jonathan Toews and Tiger Woods.

2015 Upper Deck NSCC Prominent Cuts VIP Toews

Wrapper Redemption

Those who make a qualifying pack purchase from a certified Diamond Dealer at the show get a pack with different Prominent Cuts cards. This set covers several sports and dips into entertainment as well.

Unlike previous years where certain players were available on specific days, this year everything is distributed at random.

Base Wrapper Promo Set Checklist

20 cards

2015 Upper Deck NSCC Prominent Cuts Maria Sharapova 2015 Upper Deck NSCC Prominent Cuts Stephen Curry

NSCC-1 Marian Hossa
NSCC-2 Mario Andretti
NSCC-3 Nikola Mirotic
NSCC-4 Brad Richards
NSCC-5 Joe Theismann
NSCC-6 Patrick Sharp
NSCC-7 Patrick Kane
NSCC-8 Denis Savard
NSCC-9 Horace Grant
NSCC-10 Tim Brown
NSCC-11 Corey Crawford
NSCC-12 Danica Patrick
NSCC-13 Maria Sharapova
NSCC-14 LeBron James
NSCC-15 Stephen Curry
NSCC-16 Stan Lee
NSCC-17 Ken Griffey Jr.
NSCC-18 Oscar De La Hoya
NSCC-19 Shaquille O`Neal
NSCC-20 Georges St-Pierre

Wrapper redemption packs have a limited number of autographs. Also randomly inserted are six one-of-one cut signature cards featuring autographs of deceased players from the Chicago area.

2015 NSCC Prominent Cuts Autographs Set Checklist

18 cards

2015 Upper Deck NSCC Prominent Cuts Autograph Joe Theisman

NSCC-1 Bobby Hull #/ 20
NSCC-2 Teuvo Teravainen #/ 70
NSCC-3 Horace Grant #/ 30
NSCC-4 Denis Savard #/ 15
NSCC-5 Tim Brown #/ 10
NSCC-6 Andrew Shaw #/ 70
NSCC-7 Johnny Oduya #/ 43
NSCC-8 Georges St-Pierre #/ 15
NSCC-9 Joe Theismann #/ 20
NSCC-10 Daniel Carcillo #/ 70
NSCC-11 Trevor van Riemsdyk #/ 70
NSCC-12 Mario Andretti #/ 5
PC-GM George Mikan #/ 1
PC-GS Gloria Swanson #/ 1
PC-HC Harry Caray #/ 1
PC-RG Red Grange #/ 1
PC-RS Ron Santo #/ 1
PC-WP Walter Payton #/ 1

Case Break

Upper Deck has some additional bonuses available to those busting a qualifying case at the show. In addition to ten of the wrapper redemption packs, these come with a raffle ticket good for a piece of memorabilia, special VIP autograph, box of cards and more. These items are available immediately at the show.

2015 NSCC Prominent Cuts Case Breaker VIP Autographs Set Checklist

5 cards

2015 Upper Deck NSCC Prominent Cuts Autograph Michael Jordan

VIP-1 Jonathan Toews #/ 10
VIP-2 Jerome Bettis #/ 7
VIP-3 Wayne Gretzky #/ 5
VIP-4 Michael Jordan #/ 1
VIP-5 Tiger Woods #/ 2

Complete details for Upper Deck's promotions at the 2015 National Sports Collectors Convention as well as other plans they have scheduled can be seen on their blog.

Beckett - Shop for 2015 NSCC Cards

Beckett Media has a set of 15 past covers, many with a Chicago theme, redone as cards. These will be available at select booths throughout the convention floor.

Every day, the first 50 people to collect the full set can head over to the Beckett booth and receive one of ten autograph cards. These use different covers from the main set.

Stay tuned for more additions as they're announced.

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Autograph Guests

2015 National Sports Collectors Convention Autograph Signers

TriStar is once again heading up the autograph pavilion at the 2015 National. Select signers are included with VIP packages, however, they majority cost extra.

Below is a list of signers planned for the event. For full details, schedules, prices and pre-sales, check out TriStar's website.

Baseball Autograph Guests

  • Derek Bell
  • Johnny Bench
  • Craig Biggio
  • Wade Boggs
  • Lou Brock
  • Bill Buckner
  • Jim Bunning
  • John Candelaria
  • Rod Carew
  • Steve Carlton
  • Roger Clemens
  • Cecil Cooper
  • Andre Dawson
  • Dennis Eckersley
  • Carlton Fisk
  • Bob Gibson
  • Tom Glavine
  • Tom Gordon
  • Ben Grieve
  • Whitey Herzog
  • Eric Hinske
  • Todd Hollandsworth
  • Reggie Jackson
  • Fergie Jenkins
  • Randy Johnson
  • Barry Larkin
  • Tony LaRussa
  • Pedro Martinez
  • Jon Matlack
  • Bill Mazeroski
  • Joe Morgan
  • Eddie Murray
  • Jim Palmer
  • Rafael Palmeiro
  • Tony Perez
  • Mike Piazza
  • Tim Raines
  • Manny Ramirez
  • Jim Rice
  • Cal Ripken Jr.
  • Brooks Robinson
  • Frank Robinson
  • Pete Rose
  • Manny Sanguillen
  • Ozzie Smith
  • John Smoltz
  • Bruce Sutter
  • Frank Thomas
  • Joe Torre
  • Dontrelle Willis
  • Maury Wills
  • Mookie Wilson
  • Dave Winfield
  • Robin Yount

Basketball Autograph Guests

  • Nate Archibald
  • John Havlicek
  • Allen Iverson
  • Joakim Noah
  • Scottie Pippen
  • Dennis Rodman
  • Isiah Thomas
  • Dominique Wilkins

Football Autograph Guests

  • Lem Barney
  • Fred Biletnikoff
  • Curley Culp
  • Dermontti Dawson
  • Dan Dierdorf
  • Vince Ferragamo
  • Randy Gradishar
  • Bob Griese
  • Ray Guy
  • Lou Holtz
  • Paul Hornung
  • Dexter Jackson
  • Rickey Jackson
  • Jim Kelly
  • Jim Langer
  • Steve Largent
  • Marv Levy
  • Bob Lilly
  • John Randle
  • John Riggins
  • Willie Roaf
  • Barry Sanders
  • Gale Sayers
  • Bruce Smith
  • Emmitt Smith
  • Jan Stenerud
  • Lawrence Taylor
  • Thurman Thomas
  • Mick Tingelhoff
  • Brian Urlacher
  • Randy White
  • Aeneas Williams

Hockey Autograph Guests

  • Ed Belfour
  • Chris Chelios
  • Tony Esposito
  • Bobby Hull

1980 US Olympic Hockey Team

  • Neal Broten
  • Dave Christian
  • Steve Christoff
  • Jim Craig
  • Mike Eruzione
  • John Harrington
  • Steve Janaszak
  • Mark Johnson
  • Rob McClanahan
  • Ken Morrow
  • Jack O'Callahan
  • Craig Patrick
  • Mike Ramsey
  • Buzz Schneider
  • Dave Silk
  • Eric Strobel
  • Phil Verchota
  • Mark Wells

Boxing Autograph Guests

  • Mike Tyson

Tennis Autograph Guests

  • Jimmy Connors
  • Ivan Lendl

Wrestling Autograph Guests

  • Ric Flair
  • Hulk Hogan
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Special Events

National Vintage Break

Saturday, August 1

The National Vintage Break is like a case break but with high-end cards and memorabilia. Presented by Heritage Auctions and RippingWax.com, there are 15 total slots available. Each costs $2,500.

Those participating will have an opportunity to walk away with one of the following:

  • Signed baseball from the cast of The Pride of the Yankees including Babe Ruth and Gary Cooper
  • Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris signed baseball
  • Lou Gehrig signed album page
  • Jackie Robinson signed 1955 World Series Greatest Thrill questionnaire
  • Ted Williams signed baseball bat
  • Michael Jordan signed rookie-style 1984 jersey
  • Albert Pujols game-used bat from 2010
  • Signed Wayne Gretzky game-used hockey stick
  • Mickey Mantle signed baseball bat
  • 500 Home Run Club multi-signed baseball
  • Ty Cobb signed 1932 check
  • Autographed Michael Jordan & Muhammad Ali over-sized photo
  • PSA 3 1909-11 T206 Sweet Caporal Ty Cobb, Red portrait
  • SGC 70 1933 Goudey Lou Gehrig #92
  • PSA 7 1961 Topps Mickey Mantle #300

When the break begins, slots will be randomed off and then a live draft of the items will take place.

Panini VIP Party

Saturday, August 1

Panini's VIP Party returns for another year at the 2015 National Sports Collectors Convention. Happening Saturday, August 1, it's by invitation only. Past VIP parties have been highlighted by appearances from several big-name athletes.

To get on the list, collectors need to spend $7,500 in select unopened product from one of five dealers at the National.

Besides getting into the party, you also get autographed photos from all of the celebrity guests, 500 Panini National Silver packs, and exclusive Gold VIP packs.

Topps Q&A

Saturday, August 1

Members of the Topps staff will be on hand for an informal question-and-answer session on Saturday morning. Slated to run for two hours, those in attendance will have a chance to see what's happening with the company and speak directly with key decision-makers about the company's direction and any concerns they might have.

Space is limited to 150 people. A sign-up is available at the Topps booth.


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User Comments

  1. I have never been to this event, but I will be in Chicago during the event. However, I will only be able to attend the sneak preview on Wednesday. Will all the booths, dealers etc. be available on Wednesday? For instance, will the Beckett cover cards be available?

  2. Greg You’d have to check with the National’s organizers for exact details for which booths are open and which aren’t. I think the cover cards are Thursday to Sunday.

  3. I’ve also never been but will be up there for other reasons as its going on and plan to go for a day. Do you bring your own cards to trade/sell or is it only buying from official dealers? What can an average joe card collector do at the Panini, Topps and UD booths without a VIP pass?

  4. Branden K Different manufacturers have different rules for their programs. For wrapper redemptions, it’s best to plan to just buy stuff at the show. Panini, UD and Topps should all have cards for non-MVPs. Most will be wrapper redemptions, though there are plenty of giveaways normally as well and other activities.

  5. I attended several years ago in Chicago with a group of friends. Absolutely the best time ever. Take a camera!! so many cool things on the side! The stuff they don’t advertise is often more fun and less attended than the main events. I spend about 15 minutes chatting with Jerry from Survivor and had no idea they were there. The gals from adult type cards makers are also great with photo ops when approached nicely!

  6. I wish the National Card Convention would come to Orlando, Florida. There’s so much to do there along with the convention, like Disney, Universal, Marvel, Islands of Adventure, Sea World, Aquatic, Wet & Wild, Malls, Orlando Magic. Nice Weather. I just think it would be a great spot & probably more fun than the same two (Cleveland, & Chicago).

  7. Is there a checklist for the ginter die cuts? Love them.

  8. Patrick Not yet. I do know there are 100 cards in the set.

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