It’s hard to get a lot of recognition when your season always ends before the playoffs but there appears to be a Hall of Fame career unfolding in Charlotte. It’s hard not to notice a player when they score 103 points in two games. While they still may not dominate the sales charts, Kemba Walker rookie cards should emerge among the winners from the famed 2012-13 “double rookie class.”
A New York native, Walker led Connecticut to the 2011 NCAA championship, then opted to enter the NBA draft where he was taken with the ninth overall pick. The late settlement of a new collective bargaining agreement shorted the season to 66 games but since that shortened rookie season, Walker has been among the league’s most consistent players, averaging 17.7 points or better in each season. He’s now become a regular member of the NBA Eastern Conference All-Star team.
The shortened season kept the usual flood of rookie cards to a trickle in 2011-12. Walker did have redemption cards in Panini’s Limited, Past and Present and Gold Standard issues, most of which are inexpensive and probably underrated. However, his high-end rookie cards (and most others) didn’t arrive until the following season.
It’s not a stretch to say Kemba Walker’s best rookie cards are those from the higher end products such as National Treasures and Immaculate where autographed patch cards, especially those carrying low serial numbers, bring strong prices. The most expensive Walker rookie card to date is a 1/1 Immaculate inscribed Logoman Patch, which sold for $2,750 in March.
Generally, though, Walker rookie cards sell for fairly modest prices as of now. Only six of his rookie cards have sold publicly for $1,000 or more. Most others, even many autos with serial numbers under 200 can be had for under $75. His autographs in products like Prestige, Certified and Elite are often priced at half that–or less.
That may not be the case for long.
Walker is well-liked by fans and fellow players. A respected veteran (he’s won the league’s sportsmanship award twice already), he should enjoy a long, productive career. If Charlotte can become a winner at some point of if he were to move to a high-profile franchise and get some post-season exposure, Kemba Walker rookie cards might finally get some overdue respect.
You can see a live list of all of the ‘most watched’ Kemba Walker basketball cards on eBay via the live list below.