For those of us who have been involved with Basketball Cards for more than a year, the question sounds almost like a joke. We remember a time when Prizm B-Ball was so hot, people would wait hours in line, bribe their friends at Wal-Mart, or invent Bot programs to outwork the competition to land the coveted blaster, mega, or cello pack of Prizm, Optic, Donruss, Select, Mosaic, or even NBA Hoops Holiday!
Those days seem like a distant memory. Retail shelves are full of unopened cards, wax, and collectibles of ALL sports. Group chats help each other time the product’s drop on the retail websites, from Target to Barnes and Noble to Walgreens. And then, as many collectors rushed in to buy, flip, rip, or break this year’s Prizm, we are gradually discovering that the scarcity mentality has left the building.
Prizm Basketball is not hard to find. Prizm blasters on retail are selling for $34.99 plus tax, or you can find them today on eBay Buy it Now’s for $44 or less – what is going on? I’ve got a few “reasons” as to why these cards and boxes are easier to get your hands on this year… and perhaps a main reason will emerge and be a “game-changer” for the most popular brand in the Basketball Card market for the last ten years…
Reason #1 – Obviously, the card market is down from where it was in 2020 and 2021.
Reason #2 – Panini and Retailers raised the prices by nearly $15 a box.
Reason #3 – Panini printed many more of this year’s cards and boxes, trying to capitalize on their last year(s) with an NBA-licensed product.
Reason #4 – The 2021-22 Rookie Class played their entire season BEFORE any of these Prizm cards hit the market.
Reason #5 – People have so many other options now, and they are tired of Prizm.
Reason #6 – Panini released this Basketball project at the start of FOOTBALL season.
Reason #7 – Prizm this year is poorly made and just not a quality product.
Reason #8 – More people are doing Breaks or Breaking online in 2022.
Reason #9 – All retail wax has been down this year, and Prizm Basketball followed that trend.
Reason #10 – Insiders know that all (okay, most of) the good cards come in Hobby Boxes, not retail stuff.
Sheesh, that’s quite a list.
Seems like this year’s product was destined to struggle, underperform, and disappoint all of us Basketball Card investors. Not to mention that this rookie class – while still being loaded – didn’t have a Ja Morant, Luka Doncic, or Anthony Edwards to steal the show on SportsCenter every other night. Cade missed a lot of games, Jalen missed a lot of shots, and most of the good rookies missed the playoffs.
For any and all of these reasons, this year’s Prizm doesn’t have the wow-factor or the pull that previous years of Prizm did. Wax-flippers aren’t going to make money on these in the near future, and none of the players inside the box will do anything meaningful for three months.
That being said, should we buy Prizm Basketball wax? I mean, usually people talk about buying low… buying the dip… looking for bargains… and this could easily be one of those opportunities.
Personally, though, I’m out.
I’m not buying Prizm Basketball wax, not even if it’s sitting in my Target.com cart at checkout with the 5% off for the Red Card discount. I’m not buying. Truth be told, I’ve already had one “fun rip” and my son scored a Josh Giddey cracked-ice, and I got a wildly-off-centered Jalen Green base card. If you can’t let one NBA year go by without a fun rip and excitement of opening wax in the hopes of landing a Davion Mitchell, then I say go for it. But the odds are that you won’t see the $35 you spent on that box return to you anytime soon. Cade silvers are all too rare.
But I’m not taking the risk as the card values go down… as the prices stay at retail bottoms… and as the offseason has… (say it with me) THREE. MORE. MONTHS.
There are FAR better investing opportunities these days. Perhaps it’s time to buy and hold some older Prizm wax. Perhaps you use your $35 to get the one or two superstar cards you can’t or probably won’t find in that retail box. Perhaps that list of ten reasons above makes you want to just save up and buy a graded rookie of Giannis, Kawhi, Ja, or even Jordan Poole. I would too.
The book is out on Prizm Retail and the hype is over. If you buy it for the fun and love throwing money away, then rip away. But if you want to act or think like a shrewd investor in a month and market full of bargains, your $35 spent elsewhere get you so much more upside and value for your money.