By Chris Olds | Basketball Editor | Commentary
This year’s NBA Finals have come and gone with a pair of stars getting plenty of attention — for what they did and didn’t do in the Finals.
This season saw LeBron James with his talents on South Beach — well at least for most of the season — while the Lone Star State’s main man was a guy who has played there under the radar for years in Dirk Nowitzki.
While one of these stars now has an NBA ring, comparing these two really isn’t even fair on cardboard as Dirk’s debut cards came in a time of a bit more overproduced stuff, while LeBron helped usher in a rather Exquisite era in basketball cards in his rookie season.
We all know who came out on top, but here’s a look at how they compare … in the cards and on the court.
It was a bit closer than we expected but it’s really not that close if you consider that Dirk has been around a lot longer. That should show you one part of the hobby divide here. Advantage: LeBron
Clearly, there’s one guy commanding hobby cash here and it’s not the Maverick. It’s the guy led by Maverick Carter. Advantage: LeBron
ROOKIE CARD TOTAL
It’s no contest here when it comes to value, either. Dirk’s most-expensive RC is his 1998-99 SP Authentic card at just $60. LeBron’s Exquisite RC checked in at $12,000. Advantage: LeBron
AUTOGRAPH CARD TOTAL
While LeBron is an Upper Deck exclusive, Dirk has been largely nobody’s exclusive as he hadn’t signed a substantial amount of autos for a card company in some time when Panini signed a deal with him in 2009. While LeBron is pricey and a lot more in-demand, he’s also a LOT easier to find. Advantage: Dirk.
MEMORABILIA CARD TOTAL
This one was a bit of a surprise as you’d think a high volume of cards would mean more cards for LeBron. Essentially, this is a draw but since memorabilia cards aren’t as popular as in the past to some collectors, we’ll go a different way. Advantage: LeBron.
Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Basketball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.