This may only be the fourth edition of Panini Contenders hockey cards, but the new 2013-14 series will pay tribute to the brand’s 20-year history. Specifically, it will pay tribute to the 15th anniversary of the popular Rookie Ticket from the 1998 Contenders football card series.
“In a bit of nostalgia-nodding genius, 2013-14 Panini Contenders hockey will honor the 15th anniversary of the landmark 1998 Playoff Contenders football release with Rookie Ticket Recall, a star-filled autograph insert that places some of the NHL’s biggest superstars — including Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby, John Tavares, Eric Lindros and more – on the now-famous 1998 Contenders Football design.”
The Contenders brand has been around since 1993, launched as Playoff Contenders football with an SRP of $2.49 U.S. per pack. Autographed cards – make that, Ticket Autographed cards – were introduced in 1998.
The 2013-14 Panini Contenders series will include 125 autographed Rookie Tickets hockey cards, as well as several other signed sets like Global Autographs, Winter Classic Autographs, and Signature Patches. Collectors will find four autographed cards in every 18-pack box.
The Panini Contenders hockey series was first introduced in May 2011 (the 2010-11 Playoff Contenders series). In 2012-13, the Panini Contenders were included as part of the multi-brand Rookie Anthology release in June 2013.