Well, not much has changed since last month, when we made the JULY 4G PICKS our very first monthly blog about deals at every level of the portfolio. The NFL Preseason has barely begun. Kevin Durant, Donovan Mitchell, and Kyrie Irving haven’t moved. Prizm’s new 2021-22 Basketball boxes are starting to hit the shelves at Wal-Mart and Target. People are still crazy about Quarterbacks, Bowman Prospects, and complaining about parking in Atlantic City for the National.
At the beginning of Basketball Card “Buying Season,” August presents us with opportunities to chase NBA Hall of Famers, RPA’s, and Rated Rookies at prices that feel like rock bottom. We believe the seasonal (off-seasonal?) lag in the Basketball Card market will last well into November and possibly early 2023, but you might find people have more things to “dump” or “cash in” on selling right now as they continue moving into NFL, World Cup, and MLB Playoff picks. Basketball card investors, here are our suggestions for deals and players in August and early September…
GUESSES – SMALL-CAP GROWTH
— Josh Giddey, Oklahoma City Thomas – After some impressive summer ball with fellow-Thunder future-star Chet Holmgren, Giddey reminded us why he’s one of the most exciting young stars of this rookie class. Giddey played nearly every meaningful minute with the starters as a rookie in Oklahoma City, and his rookie card prices are actually starting to “settle in” as people focus on Cade and Scottie. Comparison: Tyrese Haliburton, Darius Garland.
— Kevin Porter Jr, Houston Rockets – John Wall is gone, Christian Wood is gone. The youth-led movement in Houston is in full-swing, and they are putting the ball in KPJ’s hands as their point guard. Though his talent and performance in meaningless games is breathtaking, his track record of personal meltdowns makes him a huge risk for the Rockets and investors like you and me. On the court, there’s nothing this guy can’t do. The Rockets are risking millions and their future on him. Perhaps a Prizm Silver Raw from 2019-20 (Card #274) is worth a $20 flier. Comparison: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Dejounte Murray.
— Other GUESSES to remember: Tre Mann, Patrick Williams, Isaiah Jackson, Josh Hart, Jaylen Nowell, Michael Porter Jr.
GOODS – MID-CAP GROWTH
— Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans – Zion will be a VERY popular buy in November or whenever the preseason highlights start rolling in. Don’t wait till November. Zion could be the ideal pre-season NBA flip, especially any of his PSA 10 rookies like the Optic Blue Velocity.
— Tyrese Haliburton, Indiana Pacers – The road is open for the “other Tyrese” to become a first-time All-Star in 2023. Indiana is his team to run, and he’s already a complete point guard who can score at will. Like Zion, there will be a preseason run up in his card values, especially the higher-priced rookie cards. Unlike Zion, Tyrese isn’t an injury risk and he won’t have to compete with his teammates for shots.
— Ja Morant, Memphis Grizzlies – Okay, we think he’s already “GREAT,” but let’s sneak him in right here as the best deal of the summer. If you can afford one, his PSA 10 rookies of Optic Blue Velocity or Green Prizm parallel charts are starting to creep back up in prices. Don’t wait till October on this one.
Other GOODS we really like: Anfernee Simons, Tyrese Maxey, Cade Cunningham, Darius Garland, Jordan Poole, and De’Aaron Fox.
GREATS – LARGE GROWTH
— Damian Lillard, Portland Trailblazers – Don’t forget that he was on the All-NBA 75th Anniversary team, an MVP candidate in multiple years, and still in his prime. Someone needs to remind his iconic 2012 Prizm debut about this. While Kawhi and Klay prices in that set have started to rise again, Lillard still presents some value, upside, and perhaps some superstar performances in January and beyond.
— Dirk Nowitzki, Hall of Famer to Be – You could do worse than to load up on Topps Chrome Dirks and grade them in advance of his Hall of Fame induction. As the best player ever from Germany (or Europe overall?), Nowitzki will be a legend and value for decades to come.
Other GREATS we put in our eBay Watch list: Dwayne Wade, Shaquille O’Neal, Kawhi Leonard, Nikola Jokic, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Kevin Durant.
GOATS – LARGE VALUE – NO CHANGES FROM JULY.. why would there be? So we will say it again…
— LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers – Entering his 20th season in the league, Lebron is now a billionaire, movie star and producer, and a voice to two generations of young people. When the Lakers reload around him, AD, and maybe some form of Russ/Kyrie/Bronny… the Lakers will contend again. This year. Meanwhile, King James will become the NBA’s all-time leading scorer in the near future, and it’s smart to buy his cards while the market is down.
— Michael Jordan, Chicago Bulls – Like Lebron, the best time to buy this GOAT is during the NBA offseason. My own personal goal is to have several strong cards of Lebron, MJ, Kobe, Steph, and Giannis – and there are always buyers and sellers in the Jordan market. Jordan Fleer cards from 1987-1990 seem way too cheap to me, and his legacy and name will carry on for decades or maybe centuries, thanks to the shoe market.
— Other GOATS I’d want in my “portfolio” for the long-term: Steph Curry, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson