Sportkings Series C now live!

After watching Freedom Card Board’s wonderful live video stream from the National Sports Collectors Convention it hit me just how far behind “The Hobby’s #1 Source” truly is. Here is a company that’s been around forever that has so far provided zero coverage, while a website that is barely a year old has video, photos, and a chat room.

I truly wish I could attend the National, even with the outrageous prices because the atmosphere looks to be pretty amazing. Hopefully they bring the convention a little further South in a few years so I can at least have the opportunity of going (I don’t fly).

Anyway, Sportkings Series C is now live and hitting eBay. So far, autographs of Mike Tyson, Lennox Lewis, and legendary wrestler, Rowdy Roddy Piper have surfaced, all with insane asking prices. Although the design is missing that something special, I give major credit to Sportkings for providing collectors with a product that features 100% on-card autographs.

You can view the Sportkings Series C eBay auctions HERE.

You Be the Judge – TNA Knockouts

I wrote an entire piece on how I believe TRISTAR is wasting their time with the TNA license last night which you can find here. The product itself delivered on its promise of four “hits”, three of them being autographs and a parallel #’d to 50 or less.

The problem is that this kind of release is geared towards the horny wrestling population which is like 99.9% of every wrestling fan but these women hardly look attractive. Some are old and washed up, others are big and scary looking (ODB, Awesome Kong) and the ones who are attractive aren’t exactly “knockouts”.

Take a look at WWE’s Maria, Kelly Kelly, and Melina. These women are perfect in almost every way possible and they represent just a small fraction of WWE’s Diva roster. While TNA does have a few attractive women, most of them look like the kind of ladies you’d find working at your local Wal-Mart.

That being said, TNA Knockouts does have some pretty decent “hits” which are selling well on the secondary market. The most popular insert from the set seems to be the Knockout Kiss card, which has gone on to sell for close to $150 dollars in a recent auction.

You can find the 4-hit boxes on eBay for under $45 dollars all day long, with the 6-hit boxes selling for about $10 dollars more if you are patient. While this is not a product for every collector, it will certainly be popular among the TNA fans and supporters.

(thumbnails lead to full-size scans)

Jeff Hardy’s win is anticlimactic

I know I am not the only one who saw traces of a young Shawn Michaels early in Jeff Hardy’s career. Michaels, now a wrestling legend began his WWE career as one half of the tag team, The Rockers in the 80’s. By the early 90’s Shawn had outgrown his less-talented partner and began a historic singles run which led way to four World Championships.

Jeff Hardy came into the WWE alongside his brother Matt and took over the wrestling tag team scene as ‘The Hardy Boys”. For years many were expecting huge things from Jeff but watched as the extremely talented (and popular) Hardy Boy got into one mishap after another. By 2003 Vince McMahon fired Hardy for drug use, erratic behavior, and for missing many house shows. After being allowed back in the WWE, Jeff was suspended in March after violating WWE’s Substance Abuse and Drug Testing Policy. A few months later there was an incident of a drunk Jeff Hardy causing mayhem in a Nashville airport.

Somehow, Jeff has finally beaten the odds and won the World Championship after a decade of work and battling his inner demons. Jeff’s certified autographs from Topps Chrome & Heritage sell anywhere between $30-$50 dollars. He is also featured in many other sets, which you can find HERE.

Topps had the right idea in 1998!

As a former wrestling addict, it’s good to see Topps finding success with their recent crop of WWE trading card releases. Not only have they introduced Superfractors and other gimmicks into wrestling cards but they have done an exceptional job at it. Still, nothing Topps has done recently can surpass the great set they produced in 1998 titled ‘WCW/NWO’.

This low-end, poorly-designed product features some of the most amazing wrestling autographs fans of wrestling and trading card collectors have ever seen. Not only did they include some of the biggest superstars of the sport but due to the horrific wrestling lifestyle, much of the autographs feature entertainers who are no longer with us.

Below is my list of best autographs from the set. As of now, I could not find one single unopened box of this stuff so I can imagine how much these boxes will go for when one comes up on eBay someday.

5. Chris Jericho

Not only is Jericho one of the best of the last fifteen years (5 World Championships) but he’s still likable enough to appear in television commercials and even in VH1’s pop culture series, ‘I Love the’ shows. Even though he’s often billed as being Canadian, the 38-year old was born in New York and resides in Tampa, Florida.

4. “Macho Man” Randy Savage

There are a lot of insane rumors about why this legend has yet to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. Some of them even involve a supposed affair with a teenage Stephanie McMahon, WWE owner, Vince McMahon’s daughter. Whatever the case, this man belongs in the Hall of Fame for his six World Championships, his film and television show appearances and for how crazy he has become today.

Judging by a recent appearance, he doesn’t look very healthy (link).

3. Bret “The Hitman” Hart

“The Best There Is, Best There Was, Best There Ever Will Be”. This 7-time World Champion has appeared on shows like Mad TV and The Simpsons and was arguably one of the most popular wrestlers of the 90’s. Unfortunately, he was in the business on the night his brother fell to his death and has since suffered a debilitating stroke which forced him into early retirement.

Bret Hart was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2006.

2. Eddie Guerrero

It doesn’t matter how many times I have already seen it, put on the Eddie Guerrero tribute video in front of me and this 28-year old fan will start crying like a little girl with a scuffed knee. Maybe it was due to how lovable this “Latino Heat” was but despite his inner demons everyone can agree that he was taken from the world way too soon.

Eddie’s beautiful signature really sticks out with this on-card autograph and by looks alone I almost made this #1 on my countdown of best ’98 Topps WCW/NWO signatures.

1. HULK HOGAN

Love him or hate him (and his family), this 12-time World Champion put wrestling on the map in the 80’s and single-handedly carried the industry on his shoulders much like “Stone Cold” Steve Austin did in the late-90’s.

Today, Hogan is hosting his own Celebrity Wrestling TV show and has a new children’s movie about to drop. It’s not completely out of the question seeing him back on WWE TV someday soon, as he’s always had an enormous fan following and could sell out seats anywhere in the world.

‘The Wrestler’ movie trailer!

If you grew up in the 80’s and early-90’s and didn’t watch wrestling, I’d say the odds of you reading Wax Heaven today are slim to none. Children love super heroes and was there ever a bigger hero than Hulk Hogan and company?

At 28 years of age It’s been a long time since I have enjoyed wrestling. Don’t get me wrong, I try. Unfortunately, today’s programs are absolutely terrible. Want a good example? Look at this garbage. So while I gave up on wrestling long ago, one thing I still enjoy quite a bit is movies.

Darren Aronofsky is one of my current favorite directors. His most well-known film is ‘Requiem for a Dream’ but he also received high praises for 2006’s ‘The Fountain’, starring Hugh Jackman. While I wasn’t a huge fan of his last film, I read that his next attempt would be about a “has-been” wrestler and that is all it took to hook me.

As you can see from this trailer, ‘The Wrestler’ has a mighty great chance to win an Oscar when all is said and done. It’s already won the Golden Lion Award, the top prize you can win at the Venice Film Festival.

The song in the background is from none other than “The Boss”, Bruce Springsteen.