Player Focus: Leandro Barbosa
Leandro Barbosa is possibly the best sixth man in the West (not yet the NBA because of the Bulls' Ben Gordon - and why is Gordon still coming off the bench?). He plays for the best (and one of the most exciting) team in the league, he backs up the best PG in the league, and he can play! Sounds like the makings of a future hobby success. Barbosa has shown his skills since before this season, but his RC cards have stayed in the "commons" price level up until recently.
Like Andrew Bynum, who has 3 sig variations ("AB #17", "Andrew Bynum" & "Andrew Bynum #17"), Barbosa also has more than one sig: "LB", "LB #10" and "Leandro Suns" (or so I think, since it's near impossible to read). Based on the theory that players' sigs get shorter or more abbreviated over time, his full sigs ("Leandro Suns") will only become rarer. Of the personally acquired auto'd items I've seen for sale, they've all been either the "LB" or "LB #10", which could be a sign that he's already abandoned the full name auto. Since there's no premium placed on his full sigs (for now), as a collector I would choose to buy them over his shorter variations. Those 03-04 sets that have his full name are SP Game Used Rookie Exclusives Auto #'d 100, SPx Auto/Jsy #'d 1999 & Bowman Signature. I've found that some products have more than one variation. Some examples are SP Sig ("LB" & "LB #10") and Bowman Sig ("Leandro Suns" & "LB #10"). So make sure you look at the pic before bidding so you know what you're getting.
His higher end Auto RC's have been selling in the 85%+ of BV level. You can find his SPx RC for around $17-18 (incl s&h). Anything lower than that would be a good buy. This kid has a bright future ahead of him, and I'm definitely going to pick up some of his Auto RCs (full sig of course!).