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Ryan Tedards - @SportsCardNews


The business could use a Priceline, Kayak style website where a potential buyer can browse spots for sale from MANY breakers. So many times I see Breakers in their "room" trying to hawk spots that are still left in a break. "15 spots left guys!" Yet, usually the breakers only have 25 people in the room. That break has no chance of filling up.

It would be next to impossible to set up a third party affiliate site because Breakers don't use a standardized ordering system on their own websites. A big percentage of hotel rooms and flights are ordered off Expedia, Priceline, Bookings, Hotels Tonight etc. All of these work the same way. The webmaster gets a percentage of the sale of the hotel room/flight. I haven't met very many people in the sports card world who would be capable of pulling off a site like this, but it is badly needed for Group Breakers. 

Revenue vs Profit

These Breakers don't make real profits for themselves. Period. Sure, many of them have million dollar accounts with wholesalers such as GTS, Peach State and Gold River. Think about how expensive these products are and you can see how revenue gets into the seven figures fairly easily. But at the end of the day, I bet if you saw the tax returns of ALL BREAKERS they would appear more lower/middle class. Don't confuse revenue with profit.

Take a look at the Revenue/Profit chart for online giant Amazon. For the entire history of the company, Amazon loses money or barely edges out a couple bucks profit per quarter. Public stock of Amazon has shot through the roof because if they can improve the operating margins by just a percent or two the profit could soar. In addition, Amazon stock holders typically believe in the leadership of CEO Jeff Bezos.

Amazon Revenue - Profit
Chart From: International Business Times

Panini & Your Distributor: My Buddy & Me

Your distributor and Panini are bending you guys over backwards. That's why you're not making any money. They wine and dine you with VIP Parties at the National, but behind the scenes they are scheming how to dump all this unwanted product on you. This comes in the form of Black Friday, Fathers Day and VIP parties where they require you to buy countless junk products to get a few promo packs and hang out with some (paid) models. They even try and get some of you to open card stores to fully take advantage of these promos. Is opening a store a good idea? I wonder how many distributors or Panini employees would open a card store right now.

On the rare chance a product is good, you get hit with allocations that are just a way to preserve the profit for Panini and their real "buddy", the distributor. Trust me, Panini is just trying to make their distributors "whole". They do this by buttering you guys up enough to buy this crappy product. The distributor and Panini know there will be some other group breaker who will come along if you go broke. You really mean next to nothing to them.

If Panini just spent all this money on making better products maybe your margins would improve? Besides, don't most you breakers make most of your money on Topps products? Do you even know what percentage Topps and Panini is to your business? Doubt it.


I want to make something very clear. I would trust Doug & Dan from MojoBreak WITH MY LIFE. Let that sink in for a second. WITH MY LIFE. In my "normal" life outside of sports cards there might be a small handful of people who I would say that about. I would do anything for Doug & Dan. I've never heard one bad word about them. Ever. Period.

Me thinking so high of Doug & Dan is nothing new to them. I've hung out with them at events like the Las Vegas Industry Summit & National Shows. I've hung out with their friends and employees Mike, Shane, and Carlos. They recently brought on two people to help with breaks, Lori and Billy. I would bend over backwards for Lori, Billy, Mike, Shane, Carlos, Doug, and Dan. I've hung out with all of them. I'm 100% certain they know how I feel about them.

I DO A 2 HOUR PODCAST WITH DOUG & DAN A FEW TIMES A MONTH. I freely admit (brag) that I don't have a "real" job, you think doing a 2 hour scheduled podcast is appealing to me? Heck no. Funny thing is, I can't wait until Tuesday to talk to Doug & Dan. It's fun. If anyone else in the industry asked me to do a regular podcast with them? The answer would be heck no.

I Love (Card) Business Like You Love National Treasures

I'm interested in the business of sports cards. Period. I'm FASCINATED BY IT. If there were 1,000 new sports card stores that (for some reason) opened across the U.S. you can bet I would hit the road and check them out. And Tweet about them. And make videos about them. I've bought & re-sold (flipped) 55,885 cards on COMC because I AM FASCINATED BY HIS INNOVATIVE WEBSITE WHERE I CAN BUY AND RE-SELL CARDS BY JUST CLICKING BUTTONS.

The first time I started paying close attention to Group Breakers, it seemed like a good many of them were involved in illegal online raffles. CLEARLY ILLEGAL RAFFLES (sue me). So from the start, I'm alarmed at how "shady" some of the business was. And you can bet your *** I was now REALLY INTERESTED in what was going on. Seems like some bad apples still exist in the Group Breaking world too.

I spend countless hours researching scandals in the online poker world such as Lock, Full Tilt and Absolute/Ultimate Bet. Countless hours and I DON'T EVEN PLAY POKER. If something shady is happening in the sports card world, I will be interested and I sure as hell might say something about it. That won't change.

Related Articles:

Interview with Brian Gray
The licensing game is changing and Breakers will be directly impacted. More than most in the industry to be honest. Better start paying attention, and unfortunately Gray doesn't have good news for you.


2014 NSCC Cleveland Boxes

Links From The NSCC In Cleveland

Tweeters Worth Following:

Camera IconPhotographs  
Sports Card Radio
Ryan Tedards - Sports Card Radio
Sports Collectors Daily
Rich Mueller - Sports Collectors Daily
Blog Icon Blogs From NSCC  
National Has Begun
July 30, 2014 - Sports Card Info
Day 1 News & Notes
July 30, 2014 - Sports Collectors Daily
Kris Bryant BGS 10
July 30, 2014 - Beckett
Beckett Magazine Cover Cards
July 30, 2014 - Beckett
TV IconVideos From NSCC  
2014 NSCC Video Playlist
July 30 - July 3 - Sports Card Radio
Blowout Cards Booth
August 1, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
DA Card World Booth
August 1, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
TriStar Autograph Pavilion 
August 1, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
Day 2 - Walk Around Show Floor
July 31, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
Day 1 - Group Breaking Pavilion
July 30, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
Day 1 - Sports Collectors Daily
July 30, 2014 - Sports Collectors Daily 
Steel City Collectibles Booth
July 30, 2014 - Sports Card Radio 
Upper Deck Wrapper Redemption
July 30, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
Topps Booth
July 30, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
Panini Authentic Booth
July 30, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
Day 1 Sneak Peak
July 30, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
Walking To The National
July 30, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
Panini America Van
July 30, 2014 - Sports Card Radio
Playing Favorites At NSCC
July 30, 2014 - Beckett
Microphone IconAudio From NSCC  
@SportsCardNews Interview
July 31, 2014 - Sports Card Radio


NSCC Highlight Tweets



My Take: All You Topps Baseball guys better start to worry how they will replace this revenue!


My Take: Topps is now invited to the "RIP" Party!!

My Take: The FBI might even have a VIP pass or a booth they show up at this thing so often!


My Take: Ripping Wax, Distributors & Panini are laughing all the way to the bank!

 My Take: It will be crickets on the weekend because the 40 customers will all be broke! 

 My Take: Couldn't have said it any better myself!

 My Take: LOL - so true!

 My Take: These guys are too nice ... or need the money - or both. I'm sure they did great they turned NSCC into hard work.

 My Take: FCB does cool things at the show. If I'm ever back east I'd visit his store.

My Take: This guy is the reason I'll probably never have to work again in my life. That's not a joke.



2014 Panini National VIP Party  2014 Panini VIP Party
Held During: 2014 National Sports Collectors Convention
Date: August 2, 2014

2014 marks the 3rd year Panini America will hold a VIP party at the National Sports Collectors Convention. This years show is in Cleveland, Ohio.

How to get in for Dealers: Purchase $10,000 of eligible product using MAPP (minimum advertised price policy) from your Panini Authorized Wholesale Distributor.

You must open the $10,000 worth of eligible product at the National. You cannot open the product prior to the show.

In addition to the VIP Pass, eligible products will entitle you to Silver Wrapper Redemption Packs.

Limit: 400 National Silver Wrapper Redemption Packs per person.

How to get in for Collectors: Purchase $7,500 worth of select Panini America products from one of six approved vendors: Atlanta Sports Cards, Blowout Cards, Chicagoland Sports Cards, Dave & Adam’s Card World, Marty’s Sportscards Exchange and Steel City Collectibles.

Dealer Eligible Products:

2013 Black $100.00
2013 Crown Royale $55.00
2013 Spectra $180.00
2013 National Treasures $1,500.00 (Limit 1 Case Per Dealer VIP Package)

2013/14 Crusade $54.00
2013/14 Innovation $75.00
2013/14 Intrigue $112.50
2013/14 Preferred $150.00
2013/14 Select $105.00
2013/14 Signature $90.00
2013/14 Spectra $225.00
2013/14 Crown Royale $75.00
2013/14 Playbook $75.00
2013/14 Rookie Anthology $75.00
2013/14 Select $90.00
2013/14 Titanium $75.00
2013/14 Totally Certified $60.00

2013 America's Pastime $140.00
2013 Golden Age $54.00
2013 Prizm Perennial Draft Picks $55.00



Collector Eligible Products:

2013 America’s Pastime Baseball
2013 Prizm Perennial Draft Picks Baseball
2014 Golden Age Baseball

2013-14 Crusade Basketball
2013-14 Intrigue Basketball
2013-14 Signatures Basketball
2013-14 Innovation Basketball
2013-14 Select Basketball
2013-14 Spectra Basketball
2013-14 Preferred Basketball

2013 Spectra Football
2013 Black Football
2013 Crown Royale Football
2013 National Treasures Football
2014 Hot Rookies Football

2013-14 Titanium Hockey
2013-14 Rookie Anthology Hockey
2013-14 Totally Certified Hockey
2013-14 Playbook Hockey
2013-14 Crown Royale Hockey
2013-14 Select Hockey


Products and pricing are from a Panini Authorized Distributor. Sports Card Wholesalers can be found here.




Posted by: Ryan

Some random thoughts about the National Sports Collectors Convention. Check out some of the videos and photo galleries from past Nationals at the very bottom of the page. The videos can give you a feel for the show and what to expect.

The Right Mix
Going to the National really opened my eyes to how many different types of collectors there are. Set builders, vintage guys, modern guys, wax rippers, bargain hunters, and that's just the start. It's all in one room. It's intoxicating. It's pure heaven. You'll buy stuff that you would have never bought before. $3 Blaster Boxes even though you'll get nothing good? I'll take two!

Despite the overwhelming amount of dealer tables, you can easily feel like you've seen enough after a day or or so. Not every table will have something you are interested in, you can check out what fits your collecting style. I'd stay for 10 days if it went that long and totally go broke, but I guess people have to go home at some point.

Should You Go?
Stop what you're doing. Go check your bank account. Check the flights to Cleveland. Tune up the old car and check gas prices. Do people still hitch hike? Ok, maybe not. Try Amtrak or Greyhound if you want to rough it.  Call in sick. Lie to the wife. Send the kids to the in-laws. Don't worry about a hotel room right now. I travel a lot, hotels just do last minute. The "Hotels Tonight App" and Priceline's "Express Deals" make it unnecessary to ever have to book hotels in advance. Especially in Cleveland, I mean c'mon.


Is it Really That Cool?
I've been to a few TriStar Shows, and some other decent local shows near San Francisco, CA. For cards, nothing compares to the National. Not even close. Every time I go to a smaller show, I always enjoy myself, but it leaves me longing for the NSCC. I usually go home and think, is it July yet?

I don't make any money, at all, by going to the National. In fact, I blow and lose a ton. I'm losing money writing this as I could be working on building a profitable website about Pogs. I don't get a comped trip to the NSCC and I certainly don't wear a polo shirt that says Sports Card Radio on it while there. I write this stuff because it's fun and I want people to think about coming to the NSCC someday. Everything I spend related to the National, last year it was well over $5,000, comes out of my own pocket. The National is a charmed event, and I'd be the first guy to tell you if it wasn't worth it.

Male Senior Citizen Show
The demographic is male, overweight, and older. Would you expect anything different? To me, this is actually one of the golden ages of sports card collecting. In 25-50 years all the 1990's collectors who stayed involved in cards will be dead or close to it. Just milk these old men for all they are worth now. Besides, it's not the role of NSCC organizers to get young people involved in the hobby, they aren't the ones producing new cards!

More Set Builders Than Group Breakers
No I'm serious. It's true. Group Breaker Pavilion? Wait till you see all the tables with vintage cards. Graded Vintage Cards are no joke. The PSA Set Registry is no joke. Andrew Luck, Yasiel Puig, Johnny Manziel? At least half the people at the National could care less about those guys. They are looking for Mantle, Mays, Williams, and maybe even a Shoeless Joe.  

Wheel & Deal
You'll find some dealers that seem like they don't want to sell anything. Don't worry, that goes down at coin shows too. Just keep looking and you'll find deals. If I'm buying single cards, I always make an offer lower than what they are asking. Every time they've taken it. Don't insult them, but try to get a good price. I've gotten really good deals on autographs of Hank Aaron, Joe Montana, Pete Rose and many more. Less than what they would cost elsewhere (like on eBay). Sometimes a lot less.

Blowout Cards, DA Card World and Steel City Collectibles have dirt cheap prices on current wax products. Some of the box prices are regulated by Panini and Upper Deck, but most of it isn't. Many of the prices on boxes are around or cheaper than wholesale pricing. If I was a dealer I would find a way to ship a bunch of stuff back with me.

Who Really Makes Money
The top players in the economic food chain at the show as I see it. Unofficial of course.

  • PSA and BGS Grading
  • The Soft Serve Ice Cream Cart <----- $MONEY$
  • Large Auction Houses
  • Topps (even though they don't have anything for sale)
  • Blowout Cards/DA Card World
  • Any ATM Machine On Site
  • The guy who bought 10,000 jersey cards for $0.50 each
  • TriStar Productions
  • COMC
  • The athletes signing autographs for money
  • eBay Seller Probstein123 (who even takes Sunday off)
  • The guy who had the $1 table in Baltimore

The Topps Line
Topps typically offers up a few different wrapper redemption programs that are always very popular. So popular that drama usually ensues about the "line" to get the limited cards. One person even began taking signups for a "class action lawsuit" against Topps because he didn't get a set. The lawsuit of course never materialized and he was in line the very next day.

What's even more amazing is Topps spends far less marketing themselves at the show compared to Panini, and believe it or not, even some Group Breakers. Every corporate company at the National would kill for the line Topps gets. Every single one of them. Topps can handle the situation however they see fit. What a fortunate position they find themselves in. The worst thing that could happen is for the line to disappear.
The Random
The characters at the show are priceless. I randomly met some guy who was toting around a 1970's looking rolling suitcase. Inside he had two things. A full body wet suit that was infamous because it somehow got him kicked off a popular sports card forum. I won't get into the story. The other thing he had inside the suitcase was this old card from like 1918 that was worth $18,000. I looked it up, it was worth at least 18 grand.

It's striking how young some of the Topps employees are.

People will talk your ear off. Not the card dealers for the most part. It's usually guys promoting a website or some kind of service. Nobody cares about your website when there are 500 dealer tables with treasures to be found. C'mon.

It's amazing how many fake autographs and/or cards get "authenticated" by PSA, BGS, JSA, etc. at shows like this. Scary. You guys need to tighten it up, even though I know you're on a short turnaround at shows. I let some things go last year that were egregious errors and I for sure won't bite my lip this year.

Panini spends so much money on marketing, and it's on full display at the National. If they just spent that money on making better cards the word would spread without any effort.

The Midwest is a hotbed for sports collectibles. It should come as no surprise why the National is held in Chicago or Cleveland as of late. If you live in California like I do, or on the West Coast, don't complain. They make these things called airplanes and they are fantastic.

Post Show Fun
Sometimes after the show can be just as fun as browsing dealer tables all day. One time I went to a dinner held by sports card forum Freedom Cardboard. I tell you what, the free pasta was much needed after blowing a bunch of money during the day. What's even better is you get to meet and talk to people about what they like and dislike about the hobby. For me, that is fun.  

The Mojo Break/Layton Sports Cards party at the 2013 NSCC in Chicago was a blast. It was at a bar in what seemed like a really busy casino and a couple girls, way out of my league..... or price range..... made me feel like I had a chance for a second. I can't remember those girls names, but I met several collectors who didn't want to go home either. Everyone was all smiles. I was certainly high on life.

Stuff I'm Looking For at the 2014 NSCC
Tony Wroten, Dennis Schroder, Eric Bledsoe, Michael Olowokandi, any of the good Cubs prospects (Soler, Almora, Bryant, Baez), Barry Bonds autographs, any cheap PSA/DNA certified autograph cards, .10 cent boxes all day long, 1st Generation Beanie Babies, and certainly anything related to the online poker boom of the mid 2000's.



Videos From Past NSCC Shows

2013 National Sports Collectors Convention - Chicago

2012 National Sports Collectors Convention - Baltimore

Photo Gallery's From Past NSCC Shows  

Past NSCC Write-ups