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Friday, December 29, 2006

RC Card Focus: Andrew Bynum - SPx vs SP Authentic

For the past month or so, I've been watching actual sales for two key RC cards of Andrew Bynum. These cards are their SPx Auto/Jsy RC & SP Authentic Auto RC. Both cards are mid-high value range and I feel a decent bang for the buck.

Andrew Bynum SPx Auto/Jsy RC #'d 1499 - This card's BV in Dec was $40, then jumped to $50 in Jan. Dec sales on ebay (I tracked 14 sales from 12/2 to 12/23) averaged $36.21, just a 90.5% of BV (vs Dec BV of $40). The high was $44, and the low was $27.

Andrew Bynum SP Authentic Auto RC #'d 1299 - This card's BV in Dec was $30, then jumped to $40 in Jan. Dec Sales on ebay (I tracked 14 sales from 11/24 to 12/27) averaged $34.06, 113.5% of BV (vs Dec BV of $30). The high was $56, and the low as $22.79.

Even though the SPx had the jersey swatch & $10 higher BV, buyers didn't necessarily value it much higher than the SPA. The difference in average selling price, for roughly the same time period, was only $2.15. My opinion to explain this is the autograph version used (refer back to my previous discussion on 11/27 - Player Focus: Andrew Bynum Auto Variations). The SPx uses the VERY common "AB #17", which I think will become even more common as the years go by when this becomes Bynum's normal sig. The SPA on the otherhand uses the less common "Andrew Bynum" sig. As I mentioned before, players' sigs usually get shorter as the years go by (Ex. Kobe Bryant --> Kobe 8 --> Kobe). The impact of the difference in serial # (200) is pretty much nil.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Player Focus: Paul Pierce

Paul Pierce has been and still is one of the best players in the NBA, but has kept below the hobby radar, beneath other star players. I think the reason is because the Celtics haven't performed well as a team, and because Vince Carter & Dirk Nowitzki are also from the same RC class, and they have both performed equally well & helped their teams to better results than the Celtics. When you look at the RC BVs for 98-99, Pierce's cards are around the same level as Antawn Jamison's (among a few others, but I'm choosing Jamison to compare to because they have more similar career stats to eachother). Over their 8+ year careers, Pierce has averaged 23.5 ppg & 6.6 rpg, and Jamison 19.3 ppg & 7.6 rpg. When considering this, there is one RC that stands out as a good BV deal, in comparison to Jamison's RC in the same set. It is the SPx Finite Radiance #'d 1500. Why is it that the base version #'d 2500 books for $30, and the rarer Radiance books for $25? Jamison's base books for $25 (less than Pierce's) and Radiance is at $30 (more than Pierce's). Don't know what's going on there, but it would appear that his Radiance card is a deal! All of Pierce's RCs can be had at amazing % of BV levels. This month I saw two SPx Finite RCs #'d 2500 sell on ebay. They went for $5.30 & $5.51, 17.7% & 18.4% of BV respectively.

Looking at the current Celtics roster gives hope for the future. They have so many young talented players like Al Jefferson, Delonte West, Tony Allen, Sebastian Telfair, Rajon Rondo, Gerald Green & Kendrick Perkins who could help Pierce to a championship run. If they can develop this current team, I think that they could achieve more than Dirk has with the Mavs and VC has with Toronto or NJ. That could push Pierce's RCs into the top spot for 98-99. Just like Dwayne Wade & the Heat's Championship run last year, pushing Wade's RCs past Carmelo's into the #2 spot under Lebron.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Player Focus: Kwame Brown

Kwame Brown was the first high school player to be taken #1 in the draft, by the Wizards back in 2001. He was a raw talent with great size, and he was going to be playing along side the best player in the game, Jordan. Brown became a big disappointment, and many thought he was heading in the same direction as another past #1 pick (Michael Olowokandi '98). Now, in his 5th NBA season, and playing for the Lakers, Brown looks to be finally coming around. He's shown that he can put up good defense, and suprisingly has a soft touch laying the ball in. Not all straight out of high school stars get off to hot starts like Lebron or Dwight Howard. Take for instance Jermaine O'neal. He spent his 1st 4 seasons at Portland, playing only scant minutes and averaging just 3.9 ppg, 3.1 rpg & 0.7 bpg, before moving to Indiana and averaging 19 ppg, 9.9 rpg & 2.5 bpg over the last 6+ seasons. In some instances, it just takes a little more time & the right team situation to jump start potential. I think that Brown is now starting to show what he's capable of doing, and putting the discouragement of his past behind him. He's back from injury (re-replacing Andrew Bynum in the starting line up) and he will be key to the Lakers success this season, at both ends of the court.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Player Focus: Caron Butler

I've been a fan of Caron Butler since he came to the Lakers from Miami back in '04. I remember watching him continuously driving to the basket, through traffic and getting hammered by the big guys in the paint, and thinking this guys got guts! He's one of the most underrated SF in the game, and I was sad to see him go after just one season. Now he's doing his thing in Washington, where he averaged 17.6 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 1.7 spg and shot .870 from the line last season. This year he's off to a good start averaging 17.8 ppg, 8.3 rpg, 1.7 spg and shooting .895 from the line. He's playing with some talented players in Washington, like Arenas & Jamison, so hopefully he can be successful there. Butler's RCs can be found at good % of BV prices on auction. I recently saw two of his SPx Auto/Jsy RCs #'d 999 (BV$30) sell for $5.01 & $5.55, which are 17% & 18.5% of BV respectively. I would try to find some of his key RC cards to buy at around 15-30% of BV if possible. That way you could maximize your value if and when his cards start picking up steam.