Kobe Bryant Rookie cards are sure to be one of the best basketball cards ever produced, but can they reach the popularity of the great Michael Jordan? If Kobe Bryant can pull off a championship victory over the Celtics is rookie cards are bound to go up. The real questions will become can Kobe Bryant Rookie cards become just as valuable as the Michael Jordan 1986 Fleer Rookie Card. Here will try to break down the two sides of the coin.

1. 1986 Fleer Michael Jordan Rookie -The production run on the Michael Jordan 1986 Fleer Rookie was plentiful. With the set being so small 132 cards you could get 3-4 Jordan’s out of a single box of 86 Fleer. That being said, many of the boxes and cases were destroyed due to the fact that basketball cards were not even on the radar for most sports card collector’s. The other advantage of Michael Jordan’s rookie card is it really is his only rookie. There are not 20 other Rookie cards like Kobe Bryant has. No other basketball cards were produced in 1986. Yes, Michael Jordan does have a Star rookie, but in 1984 but there are so many counterfeits and rumors about reproduction from the original press plates I would advise collector’s to stay away from those. When Michael Jordan’s Rookie (1986 Fleer Rookie) was at its peak I remember watching someone pay $43,000.00 for a BGS 9.5. THAT IS SICK! The problem is whoever purchased that card is sitting on that card that he can replace for about $4,000. So what is the lesson that can be learned? Don’t buy HYPE! If you are speculating buy a card that can go up based on the numbers on how many were produced. If the card is rare from the get go your money will be safe.

2 . Kobe Bryant Rookie CardsKobe has many different rookie Basketball cards that you can purchase. His most popular versions re the 1996-97 Topps Chrome and the 1996-97 Topps Chrome Refractor. The Topps Chrome refractor is extremely rare and is probably Kobe Bryant’s best rookie card. Kobe Bryant has another popular version of his rookie cards that collector’s feel is just as well, for example, his 1996-96 SP rookie, 1996-97 Upper Deck Rookie, and his 1996-97 Ultra Rookie. I can go on and on here because there are so many different cards, but each one has its own popularity and demand. If Kobe Bryant can win his fourth Championship ring and do it without the help Shaquille O’Neal people will be looking to buy up as many as they can put their hands on. So now for the comparison.

Michael Jordan’s popularity far exceeds that of Kobe Bryant. Michael Jordan is an icon of not just American basketball, but is known throughout the known world. A test was conducted that said Michael Jordan was the second most recognized people in the world second to only Jesus Christ. If you are looking to buy Kobe Bryant rookie cards with the hope that they will be increasing in value I believe you are making a safe play. Just don’t overpay! If you are hoping that your Kobe Bryant rookie will be selling for tens of thousands of dollars I would say play the lottery you probably have better odds.

Alan Karpuch

Owner of GMA Grading Inc. Over 20 years experience in the sports card industry.

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