Now a days, card companies are putting out so many Auto cards in each player's RC year. Just a decade or so ago, in 96-97, the only set that had RC year autos was Skybox Premium, with their Autographics & Emerald Auto insert sets. Now almost any set worth buying has base, parallel and insert autos for most RCs. Below I've listed the players & their RC year autos who had some of the fewest issued, from 97-98 to 02-03 (also considering the value of the player - meaning that they would have to at least be of semi-star "potential" status to be listed). Also noted, autos #'d 1 of 1 are not included.
- 97-98 Tracy McGrady (1 insert, 0 base) - Skybox Prem Autographics C.M. - $1400
- 97-98 Brevin Knight (2 insert, 0 base) - Skybox Prem Autographics Reg/C.M. - $20/40
- 98-99 Paul Pierce (1 insert, 0 base) - Topps Autographs - $50
- 99-00 Devean George (0 insert, 1 base) - SPx Auto #'d 2500 - $12
- 00-01 Michael Redd (4 insert, 0 base) - Fleer Autographics Reg/Silver/Gold - $12/15/36 & E-X Rookie Memorabilia Auto #'d 500 - $25
- 01-02 Zach Randolph (3 insert, 1 base) - Topps Pristine Autos - $40, Topps Chrome Autos - $20, Topps Xpectations Auto - $20 and Topps High Topps #'d 850 - $25
- 01-02 Gilbert Arenas (too many inserts, 3 base) - SP Authentic #'d 1525 - $120, Topps High Topps #'d 850 - $75 and UD Inspirations w/Mo Pete #'d 1149 - $50
- 02-03 Ronald "Flip" Murray (1 insert, 1 base, 1 parallel) - Topps Rookie Autos - $80, Bowman Sig Auto/Jsy #'d 999 - $40, Bowman Sig Auto/Jsy Parallel #'d 99 - $80
- 02-03 Smush Parker (0 insert, 1 base) - Finest #'d 999 $50
Redd's EX auto is quite scarce. I've only seen two on auction over the past couple of months, selling for an avg price of (incl s&h) $31 (124% of BV). Redd's Fleer autos are easier to find (at least the reg version), and more affordable, selling for an avg of $10.56 (70.4% of BV) over the past month or so.
I haven't seen any of Pierce's Topps Auto for sale. All of his non-auto RC year cards have been selling in the 15-20% of BV range. I think that this card though, being his ONLY RC year auto, will sell at a much higher %. Being a fan of Pierce, I'm keeping an eye out for this one.
I also have to say that Zach Randolph's Topps High Topps Auto RC is also special. Randolph is one of the most underrated players in the hobby, and this is his ONLY base auto RC. I haven't seen any of these for sale, ever! This is another card worth picking up.