Having been chosen by a team that was an NBA Finals contender the season before, the Boston Celtics’ number one draft pick of 2017 wasn’t necessarily a lock to be a major contributor in his rookie season. It didn’t take long, though, for collectors to discover that Jayson Tatum rookie cards were going to be among the most popular of the 2017-18 season. A starter on Day One, the Duke University product did much more than expected as a rookie—and did most of it before his 20th birthday.
The Tatum Tale
With their eyes on Tatum, Boston actually swapped the number one overall pick in the 2017 draft to Philadelphia, moving down to the third spot, where they still got their man and picked up a future draft choice in the process. Tatum spent 80 games proving they’d made a solid choice. He had a double-double in his first NBA game and helped Boston reel off 16 straight wins early in the season. Tatum finished his rookie campaign averaging nearly 14 points and five rebounds per game while playing excellent defense, drawing high praise from none other than Kobe Bryant.
“His game is really well flushed out,” Bryant said. “Great mid-range game. He can post up. He can finish at the rim. He handles the ball very well. He can shoot the long ball. Most young players coming nowadays just want to do the cute stuff. He seems to be the kind of player that doesn’t mind getting dirty and being physical and playing hard at both ends of the floor.”
Jayson Tatum Rookie Cards
Collectors got their first chance to find certified autographs of Tatum in his NBA uniform through 2017-18 NBA Hoops and prices quickly rose. His base auto and the numbered parallels that go with it kept collectors buying Panini’s flagship NBA brand.
Carrying Kyle Kuzma, Lonzo Ball, Donovan Mitchell, Lauri Markkanen and Markelle Fultz in addition to Tatum sent prices for 2017-18 Prizm soaring. The low serial numbered Tatum autographs in Prizm have been among his most popular cards. In early 2018, Tatum’s 1/1 2017-18 Panini Prizm Rookie Signatures Prizms Black #3 card sold on eBay for $3,483. Gold versions of his Prizm rookie card, numbered to 10, were selling for over $2,000 at that time. Tatum’s inserts in Prizm were also popular, and the One of One version of his Emergent insert sold for $2,000.
Contenders basketball autographs are another popular choice among those chasing Tatum basketball cards, with the Cracked Ice and other low-numbered parallels seeing the most auction action.
As with any high draft pick, though, Tatum has a mountain of rookie cards. One fun option is his 2017-18 Panini Chronicles Pinnacle #270, with the Celtics leprechaun logo in the bottom left corner. 2017-18 Chronicles Majestic #307 shows Tatum working with the ball in the low-post, with a black and white picture on the front. Tatum’s rookies in Court Kings feature artistic backgrounds while his Totally Certified #103 shows his skills with the basketball, as he brings the ball up the court and calls out the play. During his high school career, Tatum played point guard. He was a combo-forward at Duke, and he has also started at both forward spots for the Celtics, while also getting some shooting guard minutes too.
Of course, there are some low-cost options available as well as you can see here.
Below is a live list of the 50 ‘most watched’ Jayson Tatum basketball cards on eBay right now.