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Jordan's rules may turn market bullish


(TC Now that Michael Jordan has told the NBA that it can no longer use his image on its licensed apparel, what does that mean to collectors?

Unless you're into T-shirts big time, nothing. Your Jordan trading cards won't be confiscated, nor will they suddenly skyrocket in value. However, your NBA logo shirts with Jordan caricatures will become collectors' items, so to speak. New Jordan shirts will bear the Nike emblem, but NBA shirts already produced will not be pulled from shelves.

According to NBA public relations assistant Chris Ekstrand, all players have the option of pulling out of the licensing agreement between the NBA and the players association.

"It's really the team logos that are the big sellers," said Ekstrand. "The caricature shirts are a small part of the business."

He added that the licensing agreement in question is only for apparel. It does not affect posters or cards, although it does mean that there will be no more SkyBox or NBA Hoops T-shirts

produced that mimicked Jordan's trading cards.


Coin of the Ripken: For $29.95 plus $5 shipping, collectors can get one of 15,000 pure silver medallions commemorating Cal Ripken's MVP award. The 1-ounce coins from Chicagoland Processing are numbered and show Ripken's name, likeness and uniform number on the front and the words "1991 American League MVP" on the back. Call (800) 765-0123 to order.


SkyBox II: For Series II, SkyBox is going Olympic with a 34-card subset of the U.S. Olympic team as well as cards of NBA players from the 1984 and 1988 teams. In addition, a limited-edition, unnumbered, gold foil-stamped USA Basketball team card will be randomly inserted in foil packs. This is the only Series II card with all 10 NBA Olympians on the same card. There are also 39 player updates and 15 subsets. Series II has 309 cards, none of which appeared in Series I. Last year, some cards were in both series. Series II comes in 15-card green foil packs and 62-card blister packs.


Fast cards: McDonald's, a sponsor of USA Basketball, is teaming with NBA Hoops on a pre-Olympic special. With a qualifying purchase, diners will get a four-pack of NBA Hoops cards, including one Olympic card. Some people will get instant-winner cards and receive the complete 70-card "Superstar" set, 50 cards of NBA stars, 12 U.S. Olympic cards and, for Chicago-area patrons, eight Chicago Bulls cards. The cards resemble regular NBA Hoops but differ in the numbers -- they're unique to this set and are placed inside a basketball -- and pictures used.


Hull in French: Upper Deck's nine-card Brett Hull bonus subset has been randomly inserted in French-edition packs. Eight of the cards are in French. Card No. 9, of which Hull autographed 2,500, is not translated. Upper Deck plans to issue a "Hockey Heroes" subset in each future low series.



Upcoming events:

Today, baseball card show, Security Holiday Inn (I-695, Exit 17), 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., (410) 922-8366.

Saturday, Feb. 29, baseball card show, Maryland National Guard Armory (3727 Putty Hill Ave.), Parkville, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., (410) 494-9590.

Saturday, baseball card show, Baltimore Arena concourse (admission by Baltimore Skipjacks ticket or $5 before game time), 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., (410) 727-0703.

Saturday, baseball card show, Towson Sheraton (I-695, Exit 27A), 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., (410) 922-8366.

Saturday-Sunday, baseball card show, Hunt Valley Mall, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.

Sunday, baseball card show, Towson Quality Inn (I-695, Exit 26S), 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., (410) 239-7446.

March 7, baseball card show, Comfort Inn-Airport (I-695, Exit 6A), 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., (410) 922-8366.

March 8, baseball card show, Freedom District Fire Hall (Route 32 between I-70 and Route 26, Sykesville), 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., (410) 922-8366.

March 14-15, Glen Burnie Mall, March 14 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., March 15 noon to 5 p.m.

March 22, baseball card show, Towson Quality Inn (I-695, Exit 26 S), 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., (410) 239-7446.

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