Before the pandemic kicked into high gear, I was continuing on my run of condensing my collection down, and selling off cards from my earlier days of collecting that weren't as much a fit for me any longer. In particular, I targeted one monster card that I've always wanted to own, and decided I'd sell off a bunch of smaller cards and lots to raise the money I needed for this one huge acquisition.
After many, many hours of taking photographs, creating eBay listings, negotiating with buyers, packaging, and quite a few trips to the post office, I pulled off one of the biggest mass flips of my collecting life.
I still collect both of these guys' vintage cards, but I decided that I'm not going to drive myself crazy going after every multi-player leader card like this. I'd rather just focus on their standard flagship cards for now. This one went off to a very happy buyer who's working on a graded '64 set, and the $30 I netted began my fund for my dream card.
I let this lot go for $22. Probably a few dollars less than I spent on them all combined, and probably could have gotten a few more bucks had I waited, but the goal was to flush these out of the house and raise funds quickly, so there you have it. Besides, I got to enjoy having each of these in my collection for well over a decade.
The price for these 9 was negotiated at $40. A good deal for the collector or re-seller who purchased them, a good chunk of change for my project.
I realized though that A) I'm not likely to ever complete this quest given that I haven't made it a priority in years and still have his expensive rookie card hanging out there, and B) it was the '50s cards of Ernie's that I was most interested in anyway. Coming to that realization made it easy to part with this '66 issue, especially in return for $60.
Now, before you level any criticism at me, let me say that I am not one of those who listed and sold this card in the immediate aftermath of Kobe Bryant's death in January. Had I done so, I could have raked in much more money than I did, as his cards were selling at absolutely insane rates for a while after his passing. I gave it a few weeks, then sold this copy of his Topps RC for $150, probably half to a third of what it went for only weeks earlier during the buying frenzy.
In fact, I have a great future blog post about the one time in my life I purchased a graded card with one of these old labels just because it was cheaper, then sent the card to PSA to be re-slabbed (the one and only time I've ever sent anything to PSA actually!). For today though, this Yaz resulted in an additional $18 in the dream card fund.
I paid less than $20 for it, and the only reason I hadn't sold it after all these years is that I figured it was probably still worth only that or less. Surprisingly though, I hauled in $55 for this hand-cut strip card.
I am in the market to replace this card with a different Doncic rookie someday, but I'm in no rush at all.
This would be a cool card, except that on the back you're told the patch is "event used". Let it go for $30, which I'm astounded by. I did include a detailed scan of the back showing that it was event used, but a Krejci collector from New Hampshire wanted it anyway.
I know this is a lengthy post, but I swear we're almost there, just two more sales and then you'll see what I did with the funds generated...
Alright, so as you've seen I sold a full 35 cards, either as singles or in lots, to drum up well over $1,000 in available funds. As I mentioned in yesterday's teaser post, I applied every dime that I generated towards just a single new card.
My pick-up is one of the most iconic cards in its sport, or in any sport for that matter.
It's probably not what you would guess if you've followed this blog over the years or are familiar with my collecting interests.
When I started my "Cardboard Keepers" thought project around identifying which cards of the many thousands I own I appreciate and love the most, I realized I wanted to dabble into some iconic cards across even the sports that I don't collect fervently. On the basketball front, it didn't take me long to decide that this was the single card I wanted to target above all others. Thus, the idea was conceived to conduct some sales, raise the funds, and go for it while I had the opportunity.
I couldn't for the life of me determine why this copy, which truthfully looks as good as many 7s and 8s, got the grade that it did. While the seller (an independent collector like myself) didn't mention it, I found when it arrived that it was accompanied by this "Exceptional" certificate and hologram sticker from Pre-War Card Collector. Essentially they agree, saying that this card is easily in the top 85-90th percentile for its grade, and exhibits qualities and overall appeal well beyond its grade.
I know the whole grading thing is suspect and all, but I think the seller did himself a disservice by not playing up the outstanding condition of the card itself a little more. There are a lot of collectors out there that blindly focus on the number assigned to the grade, sure. However, there are an equal number of collectors like me who are only buying graded because of authenticity concerns (especially on a super valuable and highly counterfeited card like this one). For me, the grade is for authenticity, but I look beyond the score and judge based on the actual appeal of the card itself. Isn't that why we're all collecting?
I think some language in his auction title like "amazing eye appeal", or "sharp stunner", or maybe even something like "best PSA 4 ever to hit eBay!" would have helped him realize a bigger profit on his sale. Either way, I could not be happier that it's now mine.
For the life of me I can't understand why this didn't achieve a grade at least a level or two higher than it did, but on the other hand I'm grateful for that since I'd otherwise never be able to own a copy this pristine in my lifetime.
Speaking of which, it turns out my timing could not have been better. I had no clue about the plans for ESPN to release the Jordan documentary when I picked this up weeks back, but as you may have heard his card prices have absolutely soared with its release. Just a couple of months later I could honestly double my money on this purchase, which is absolutely insane to me. If I played up the deceptively low grade and the PWCC Excellent notation, I honestly could probably triple my investment based on recently completed auction prices.
I guess I knew that would be the case eventually with this card, which is why I went for it, but didn't realize it would happen so quickly. My thought process was that it's probably the only "most iconic in its sport's history" card that I could hope to acquire for a little over $1,000 (other than maybe a Wayne Gretzky rookie, which I already have). If prices don't drop down after this documentary hype dies off though, that may no longer be a true statement. Wow.
Thanks for sticking with me through this exceptionally long post, but since this will probably be one of the highlights of my collecting experience I wanted to document it accordingly.
How about you? Have you ever, even on a smaller scale than this, sold a bunch of smaller items to roll the money into one significant purchase like this? If so, I'd love to hear about it in the comments.
Thanks as always for stopping by!
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