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The UGLIEST Basketball Cards of ALL TIME that Make No SENSE!

June 04, 2021 7 min read

The UGLIEST Basketball Cards of ALL TIME that Make No SENSE!

I assure you, you will not be seeing any of these cards on the website. Today's topic is going to be kind of a fun one and, with the explosion of basketball cards, of course really any kind of cards right now, the trading card companies are going to have to get a little bit bolder with their designs. They're going to have to adjust their designs because they're coming out with so many cards now and inevitably when you do that you're going to have some skunkers. Some bad ones that really don't make any freaking sense, and that's what today's topic is going to be about. Some of those basketball cards that have just come out recently that are just kind of a head scratcher. Now listen, I realize basketball cards, like artwork, are completely subjective. It's really all about what you like and what you like somebody else may not like. So these are just five of the cards that I thought kind of needed to go back to the drawing board. So here they are five cards for you in no particular order.

#5: Panini Prizm Tiger Stripe

Number five here is the Panini Prizm Tiger Stripe, and I know people like this tiger stripe card because it's a rare card and there aren't that many out there. It's like a super, super, super short print or whatever. It's got like 15 s's in it okay. I get it. Nobody really likes it, but what does a tiger have to do with basketball? Yes I know there are some teams out there that have the tigers as their nickname, LSU Tigers, makes sense if the team name was the Tigers. Making the tiger stripe card would actually probably be pretty cool like if you made a numbered set out of them or something like that. That would make total sense to me, but I mean do tigers play basketball in the jungle? I mean do they play it in the zoo? I mean I don't understand the reference to the tigers here. Is it is it because the basketball court is kind of like a jungle sometimes? I don't get it. The colors don't really match any NBA team. There aren't a bunch of NBA teams out there with orange in them. Maybe if you did them for the Phoenix Suns that would maybe make a little bit of sense, but having a tiger stripe for a guy without a yellow jersey, it just doesn't really make any sense.

I'm all about having team colors on a card. I think that's what makes it the sexiest card and the best looking cards. If you go back and look at those like 2017 Panini Prizms, the green ones with Jason Tatum, I thought those look absolutely sharp. Again, team colors are what I'm all about when it comes to the cards, and again that's just my personal preferences.

#4: 2018 Panini Prizm Red/White/Blue

Number four, and this one is a funny one, it's the 2018 Panini Prizm - The Red, White, and Blue. This one looks like Panini reps went out to lunch someday and they decided to get a haircut and they were just sitting in the barbershop, and they're seeing it spin around there, and they're just like, “Wow, wouldn't that be great if we put like red, white, and blue on the sides of our cards and kind of make it look like a barber shop?”  Now listen, if this was like a team USA card with like the red, white, and blue stripes in there that would look stunning. That I could see being a really popular card, but just having a random red, white, and blue stripes down the side in kind of looking like a barber shop there, it just doesn't make any sense to me. I keep seeing these Luca’s from 2018 selling for a crap ton of money and I'm just thinking to myself like, “Man, that is an ugly card.” In 10 or 15 years if it goes up in value you're gonna want to own it, but I mean are you going to want to own that for your personal collection? Again, personal preference for me, that would be a no. I feel like I'm like Shark Tank. You're going to have a great business but I'm sure not going to invest in you today with that giant question mark over the numbers. I'm sad to say I'm out. It's a no from me. So maybe one day I'll be on that show if this business becomes very successful.

#3: 2019 Panini Prizm – The Base Guard

So next one, number three, the 2019 Panini Prizm - The Base Guard. Now Patrick Ryan's talked about this one. I've had him on the show before and Patrick comes from a different angle. His mom's an artist so he's kind of already got that eye for cards and I'm kind of with him on this one. He's talked about Panini Prizm a little bit as they're just kind of boring, bland cards. There's just not a lot going on there. Take the Zion Williamson for example, I mean this is kind of a flagship rookie card for Zion and these things were going for a $1,000 or so not too long ago. They dropped a little bit of price since he got knocked out of playoffs, and it's a great image of Zion. He’s kind of going up for a dunk but there's really nothing else to it. No other players in there. Granted, these cards came out before they could probably get a ton of images of these players playing together, I get that, but I don't know, it just doesn't do it for me. There's no team colors to it, there's no real designs to it, it's just kind of some borders and some grayness, and gray for all you artists out there is kind of a gloomy color. It doesn't really brighten many things up so it's just gonna be kind of an interesting thing to see what happens to these base cards because the design isn't all that artsy. I guess you could wait and see where they take off to. There's not much color to it so I don't know, we'll see. We'll find out, but just not a super decorative card for me.

#2: Panini Hoops “Winter”

Number two is actually one of my favorite brands, so let me just preface this before I say anything. The Panini hoops brand, in my opinion, is really undervalued because they do a lot of team colors with their cards. I just picked up a bunch of Tyler Herro ones and if you notice the 2019 Hoops Herro cards, they've got the red background, obviously the heat. It's a really sharp looking card. For picking one up for $2 to $5 a card, not a bad price for a rookie card for Herro, and of a team color design. But recently Hoops got these Hoops Winter version I guess you can call them, where they've got snowflakes falling. I don't know, I just don't associate basketball with snow. I mean the game in the professional level is played indoors obviously, yes as kids growing up we played outside, we probably played in the snow, but it's not football. I mean football's associated with the snow, that would make sense to me, but maybe it's a positive that all this these snowflakes are covering up the flaws of the cards, and maybe you can get more PSA 10s that way. I don't know, it's kind of like in the autograph industry where people get inscriptions for like Merry Christmas and stuff like that, and if you don't sell that in the Christmas season that thing is sitting around for a whole year. So I don't know why you would get that inscribed hoping you're going to sell that to someone. Now yeah, if you get it personally for yourself that makes sense, but I don't, know winter cards, they just don't do it for me.

#1: 2017 Red/Yellow Optics

Number one on this list I had to kind of toss it back and forth with on this one because I really like the hollows that they have, but this one, the non-hollow just doesn't do it for me. I'm talking about the Optics red and yellow cards, the football ones too. I'm not a huge fan of them. They’re kind of exactly the same design there, but I don't know about the red and yellow. If your team colors are the complete opposite of that it just doesn't make any sense. The stripes aren't really kind of lined up on the outside, they're kind of angled which isn't bad if they were team colors, I wouldn't mind that all that much. Again, I really like the hollows, I really love the reflective coating on them, those look really sharp, but 2017 you got Tatum's rookie year and I just don't see those Optic red and yellows holding their value. The hollows, yes I do, but again going back to those 2017 cards, those green Prizms there for Tatum for example, because he's the main rookie for that year, that one in my opinion, besides maybe the silver Prizm, is probably going to hold its value more than most, mainly because it's the team colors. And if you're a Tatum fan you're probably a Boston Celtics fan and you're going to really like the design look of that card. So that's why I'm huge on obviously doing team colors.

So again, completely subjective here, you're probably going to agree and disagree with me on some of these. There are a ton that could go on this list, but I don't want to be here forever and bashing on cards. It's not really my thing, but I thought we'd do a fun little video and talk about some of the interesting ones.

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