The Post War Cards Newsletter #10
There’s only a market because your mom threw your cards out. If everyone kept all their cards, none of them would be worth anything.
When Did 1986 Fleer Basketball Take Off?
A few weekends ago, I was reading a back issue of Baseball Cards Magazine from October 1991 and tweeting advertisements and articles from it. One of the tweets was an advertisement for 1986 Fleer basketball sets, with prices over $500 bucks, and another requested buyers to call the dealer, implying prices were going up or they may not have any in stock. I wrote that “86 Fleer Bk must not have been junk anymore in late 1991.”
See, when the set came out, it wasn’t very popular, and Fleer actually cut production numbers for their 1987 set (A Brief Discussion About 1986 and 1987 Fleer Basketball Print Runs).
A few years ago, Darren Rovell even tweeted, “How unwanted were 1986 Fleer basketball cards, now one of the hottest sets? I got 15 issues of Sports Collectors Digest from 1986-87, and found ONE AD in the thousands of pages. Tonight, a box — which sold for $15 — will sell for a minimum of $158,400 at @GoldinAuctions.”
But when did prices for the set start to climb? Three collectors on Twitter shared their thoughts. One said it was in the middle of 1990 when non-baseball prices exploded. He mentioned that it seemed like overnight, the 1986 Fleer and 1984/85 Star sets skyrocketed. Same with football and hockey, as he remembered Brett Hull's rookie cards going from a few dollars to $100 in New York City. Another collector said it happened in late 1988 because, in early 1989, he picked up a 1987 Fleer basketball set for $150 because he already felt the 1986 fleer set was too expensive for him. And a third collector wrote that the arrival of the 1988/89 Fleer set sparked the 1986 sets’ resurgence. He thought the David Robinson rookie helped the overall basketball card market around that time too.
I also have a HYGRADE basketball card catalog, and in August 1990, it valued 1986 Fleer basketball boxes at $2400.
I think I’ll have to order a slew of SCD Magazines from 1987-1990 to get to the bottom of this.
PS, in 1997, the Baseball Card Kid was selling 1986 Fleer basketball packs for $160 or two for $300. Today, PSA 8 graded packs are ~$3000.
Great Hobby Writing
Puck Junk: Collecting the ’72 Summit Series
Collector’s Dashboard: 10 Sports Collectibles Predictions After the $12.6 Million 1952 Topps Mantle Sale
The Shilabotnik Report: Unintentionally Following Topps’ Footprints
Pre-War Cards: Chicago White Sox Trip to the Royal Gorge Memorialized on 1910 Postcards
Baseball Cards Come to Life!: The 1962 World Series
Night Owl Cards: Where Trimming is Allowed
Cardboard History: I Wondered About Team Leaders
Raymond Chester and his Friend the Zombie
Many of you have seen the 1981 Topps #65 Raymond Chester card. It’s known for a player’s hand reaching toward him with a pretty beat-up glove/wrapping, making it appear zombie-like. But how many of you remember how good Chester was?
Raymond Chester was one of the top NFL tight ends in the early 70s, being named to the Pro Bowl from 1970-72 (and again in 1979). He won a super bowl with the Raiders and finished his NFL career with 364 receptions for 5013 yards and 48 touchdowns.
1947 Bond Bread
1947 Bond Bread cards have been a hot topic of conversation in the vintage baseball card market lately.
The cards were originally distributed with rounded corners.
But there are copies that collectors try to sell as 1947 Bond Bread cards that have square corners.
There are a lot of stories about where the square-cornered cards came from (warehouse finds, reprints, etc.), but the major authenticators won’t grade them (I don’t think PSA will grade rounded corners anymore either, but I’m not 100% sure about that). Could the same company have printed them? Sure, but that doesn’t mean they are related to the 1947 Bond Bread issue.
There is so much mystery around the squared “versions” that if I were interested in buying a 1947 Bond Bread card, I would only buy those with rounded corners.
You should always do your own research, though; I suggest starting with this thread on the net54 forums.
In the News
NSCC Show: Future National Sites Announced
TechCrunch: Renowned founder Brian Lee and Derek Jeter have a new sports card biz with a digital bent
Sneaker News: The Panini x Reebok Question Mid Collab Celebrates The Sports Card Revival With A “Rookie Shoe”
Sports Collectors Digest: PWCC acquires $175 million in financing to help provide loans, cash advances to clients, collectors
Sports Collectors Daily: Got Patience? PSA Opens $22 Bulk Service Level for Club Members
Sports Collectors Daily: Justin Herbert Rookie Card Nets $1.8 Million
Kirk Gibson and Card #666
It’s true; Upper Deck numbered the 1989 Kirk Gibson card 666 because an employee didn’t like the Dodgers.
You can read a few more articles about it here, here, and here.