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TOP 10 Basketball AUTOGRAPH SIGNINGS Collectors Want to See in 2021

May 24, 2021 14 min read

TOP 10 Basketball AUTOGRAPH SIGNINGS Collectors Want to See in 2021

Well today's episode is going to be about the top 10 autograph signings that the collectors want to see happen here in 2021. Every day it seems like I'm getting asked about “Hey is this guy going to sign, is this guy going to sign?” and inevitably kind of a large list builds up of guys that people want to see sign. Some guys sign a lot, some guys absolutely never sign, but there are some popular names that keep popping up and many of those are going to be on this list. So today is a top 10 list of people that have autograph signings that people want to see happen in 2021. Where you can send in your own items to be signed. That's going to be the main premise for the signings, send in autograph signings.

Before we get started though I got to get one thing out of the way. You're probably thinking that Jordan and LeBron are going to be on this list, yes they probably would be on this list in a perfect world, but let's be honest. LeBron and Jordan are upper deck guys. They are not doing signings where you're going to be able to send in your own item. It's just not happening. They don't want to mess with it. The demand is too high. They don't need to do it. It's not happening. So no point in wasting any spots on those two guys. I do remember about 10 years ago though you could actually send in items to a Jordan autograph signing through one of their authorized dealers, and I think it was about a $1,000 an autograph. So pretty expensive back then, pretty cheap nowadays. So what did I send in? I sent in a Chicago White Sox helmet and a White Sox jersey just to be different, and I think I ended up selling those for like $1,800 each or so, but crazy to see what those would probably be worth. There's definitely not many of those on the market.

So who are you not going to see on this list? You're not going to see guys like Shaq and Iverson, those guys are popular signers, they sign every couple months it seems like. This list is just going to be guys for tough autographs, who simply do not sign, and this one's only going to be for the retired players. I will do a separate list for current players in another video. Also stick around to the end, I will give you a non-player autograph that is going to be definitely one that people want to see sign. A very high demand autograph that you probably are not thinking about. Without further ado let's go ahead and jump into this list! Quick little hint, you're going to be seeing a lot of Dream Teamers on this list.

#10: Grant Hill

I know you're thinking, “What, Grant Hill?” Listen, Grant Hill is a guy that just does not sign and he's one of those players that has this sort of mystique around him, sort of like a Penny Hardaway. Guys that got injured kind of often in the career and could never live up to their full potential. Every time we think of Grant Hill, I don't know about you, but I always think about Duke. I always think about that Lightner shot and there are a ton of collectors out there that want to get something dual signed with Lightner. The shot image, maybe a jersey, or a ball, or something like that. Getting a Duke signed jersey. Grant's a very popular Duke player. I think people are very are underrated with that. The Duke program is way up here when it comes to collectors wanting their stuff, and of course Grant Hill is a hall of famer. Most people probably don't know that. Seven time all-star as well. So he was a very solid player. He's still in the limelight doing analysis work for I believe TNT or TBS, so he's definitely still out there but the guy just does not sign. I have not seen him do a private autograph signing where you can send in ever. So definitely have to have him on this list.

#9: Yao Ming

I think you're probably not thinking of him much, but it's been a long time since Yao Ming has done an autograph signing. I think the last one he did was with Steiner Sports or Upper Deck, one of the two. I want to say eight to ten years ago. It's been a while for him.

Reason why he's on this list here is the emerging market in china, and I say emerging, and China's been emerging for a long time, but China has a ton of collectors there. Especially for basketball. We all know they love, just like us, LeBron, Kobe, Jordan, those kind of guys, but Yao is their home country guy, and Yao is a very popular player over there. So, an autograph signing with Yao would be absolutely huge, but he just has not signed in quite some time. Rookies and China related stuff both are going to sell. Getting Topps Chrome rookies autographed, but yeah he was one of those sloppy autographs. It's very hard to authenticate. If you've ever seen his autograph, it just looks like a bunch of chicken scratch. It doesn't make any sense. So having a paid, private signing, where you can send in items or have an authenticator like JSA, Beckett, or PSA, knowing you're getting a legitimate autograph is probably going to be the only way to 100% know that that Yao autograph that you got is definitely a legit autograph. It's a bad one. I mean it's arguably probably one of the worst ones. I'd love to see what his autograph looks like in Mandarin or Chinese because remember how Hideki Matsui used to sign in Japanese, that was always really cool too. It'd be very interesting to see what Yao's looks like, but due to his international flair I think Yao is extremely undervalued, and keep in mind he's only 40 years old. So he's got a decent amount of time to build up some collectors in there and build up a little bit of moment with his collectibles, but due to his Chinese relations and being a citizen there, I think there is a tremendous market in the future for Yao Ming. Definitely an undervalued guy in my opinion.

#8: Steve Nash

One of my favorite guys, an alumni of my school, Santa Clara University, Steve Nash. Oh I love Steve Nash. Love his game. Two-time NBA MVP, NBA hall of famer. He's back in the limelight now being the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets and he was kind of the Steph Curry before the Steph Currys. Now he didn't shoot these long-range jumpers like Curry, but his game was very similar, very flashy kind of guy, and Nash just does not do many private signings. I think the last one he did was with Steiner Sports. Probably about eight to ten years ago. His son's items are extremely popular. He does sign occasionally in person, but again paid private signings is just not his thing.

Another international flair guy being a Canadian citizen. I think that's definitely an advantage for him.  Steve Nash is one of those great players that people just kind of forget about I think, so I think he's still very undervalued just like Yao Ming is. I mean there aren't many people in this league that were a two-time NBA MVP.

#7: Patrick Ewing

Another hall of famer, Patrick Ewing 11 time all-star, member of the Dream Team. Of course playing for the Knicks. That’s always going to keep his items popular. He signed with Steiner Sports eight to ten years ago. He did sign again with Steiner not that long ago, but I think it was maybe five to seven years or so. People need him on Dream Team items for sure, and finding an actual legit Patrick Ewing autograph can be very difficult. Similar to Yao Ming, his autograph just isn't very crisp. It's kind of sloppy, so it's hard to tell with his in-person autographs what's legit, but you get arguably probably the greatest New York Knicks player of all time. New York has got obviously a huge fan base that is going to be huge for collectors. They definitely want to see something like that happen. People need him on the Knicks items, but again those Dream Team items are what people are missing. Certain guys like Jordan and all those kind of guys, but Ewing is definitely one of those that's on that list.

#6: Scottie Pippen

Anyone tied to Michael Jordan seems to have an autograph that's in demand. Number six on this list right now is Scottie Pippen. It's been a few years for Scottie. 6 time MVP all-star, seven-time NBA champion. Of course a hall of famer. He did a signing, I think he was at Chicago, the Rosemont, probably seven or eight years ago. Fairly decent price, I think it was a little over $100 or so for premium items, so not too terrible. Again, Dream Team as well. People got to get them on stuff like that, but getting dual sign stuff with Jordan if you choose to venture down that path, I know people don't like kind of wasting an autograph on Jordan with a dual sign with somebody else, but if you do do one, get Scottie Pippen on there as well. You got just a great player, you saw what his product did during the last stance documentary. That stuff was flying up.

It's been again like I said five or seven years since Pippen did an autograph signing, and autographed cards are becoming a popular thing to send into signings now. A lot of people will be getting Pippen and rookie cards done.

#5: Charles Barkley

Another hall of famer, Mr. Charles Barkley, the round mound rebound NBA hall of famer. 11 time all-star. Again, a member of the Dream Team just like Patrick Ewing. Right now he's currently a Panini exclusive so fortunately he is signing autographs and that's a big positive, but Panini just doesn't do send-in stuff or public autograph signings like how they used to back in the day, so getting him on a send in item right now is going to be tough. Probably until that exclusive deal expires with Panini, but I would love to be able to send some stuff to Charles Barkley. Getting some special inscriptions and of course Dream Team, the Phoenix Suns, and 76ers items. I mean there's just a bunch of cool stuff that collectors want to get done for Charles Barkley.

Good thing with Charles though, he does sign a decent amount of in-person autographs so you do have a chance of getting him on some items, but not on an expensive Dream Team item that you've got multiple other autographs on. You're not getting that sent out there. If you want a unique inscription you're just not getting that done that way, and private signing is going to be the only way to get those items all finished up.

#4: Reggie Miller

This guy I don't know if he's ever done an autograph signing. I don't know if he's ever picked up a pen. He is extremely difficult and I'm not sure why. I'm just really not sure why, because he's a very personable guy. Number four, Reggie Miller, five-time all-star NBA hall of famer. Ge's got that trash talking attitude kind of like an Allen Iverson that people just absolutely love. I mean the whole choke thing with the Knicks, and what did he score 11 points in like eight seconds versus them or something. I mean that was back when basketball, not to say it's not cool right now, but it was cool back when.

Reggie Miller playing versus the Knicks was just an iconic series. I love those series. I mean Patrick Ewing missing that layup at the end, oh man, just absolutely great. He's a tough autograph though. Again, there are tons of fans out there that would love to get something on him, UCLA fans as well. I mean really any item with him is going to be a great seller. There's just not that many autographs and I don't know what the deal. I've never met him but he just seems like a very personable guy not really secluded all that much, but again I don't know.

#3: Bill Russell

This one is iconic and I don't know if this one's gonna happen. I just don't think it's gonna happen, but he's worthy of being on this list 100%, and that's Bill Russell. He needs really no introduction, but for some people who may be just getting into basketball, Bill Russell, 11-time NBA champion, that is more than Jordan and LeBron combined. Think about that. That's more than those two guys combined. Those guys are arguably the greatest basketball players of all time. Again, he played in a different era, but I just don't see anybody getting the 11 time NBA champion ever again. Five-time MVP, two-time NCAA champion as well which people kind of forget about that, so I mean it can't really get much better than that. They're just not making players of his caliber anymore. Especially big guys like that, I mean my gosh. He is a guy that did sign a decent amount. De did do signings every now and then so you could definitely get Bill Russell at certain points, but he's 87 years old right now and given all the health stuff going on in 2020 and 2021 it would be stupid for him of his age to do a public autograph signing. It would just be too much risk for him, and I would not blame him for doing that. Do I see a private signing happening? I don't think so. I really don't think so.

I've seen the pricing go up on him. I talked about him on another video about being kind of really undervalued. At this point you can find really nice stuff out there with him and Wilt Chamberlain, again not signed by Chamberlain, but a nice photo of them too. That stuff to me is going to be iconic, but if he did do a public autograph signing it would just be great for people to bring their kids there and to be able to meet him, shake his hand, and just remember that moment of when you met Bill Russell because they are not bringing those type of players around anymore, but again due to his age I just don't see it happening. So if you are looking to pick up something Bill Russell, I definitely would pick up something rather soon okay.

All right now we're getting to the top two on this list. You thought these guys I talked about were tough, well these guys are way tougher. These guys are high demand guys, I don't remember any of these guys doing autograph signings, so also make sure you stick around to the end here. I will show you that top non player that also is a tough autograph as well, but let's go ahead and jump into these last two here.

#2: Tim Duncan

Number two, one of my favorite players, Tim Duncan. This guy's a tough autograph. Now he does sign a little bit in person. I have had a few things on him. He's got a really nice autograph with the long “T” at the top there. It looks sharp. I've never seen him do a private autograph. Maybe I missed it, maybe I forgot about one, but at least not within the last 10 years. I mean this guy for as popular as he is, five-time NBA champion, three-time finals MVP.

This guy is, of the more recent players, this guy's number one on the list of guys that you gotta get that will actually, hopefully, potentially, sign. I mean he's got no exclusive deals, getting Spur stuff on him would just be iconic. Getting jerseys, dual sign stuff, maybe with David Robinson that stuff would be so cool. Getting a couple rookie cards autographed. I mean there's just a bunch of great stuff that collectors could get done. There's a bunch of other Spur stuff out there too with guys like Manu and also Tony Parker that you can get done. So there's just a lot of opportunity right there. Somebody out there who's got a lot more money than me, make it happen for Tim Duncan. I will be in for a hundred autographs, man put me down right now all right.

#1: John Stockton

Now it's time to move on to number one on this list. This guy is notorious. I mean collectors need this guy to finish out a lot of items here, and number one on this list is Mr. John Stockton. Oh man, I get asked about him all the time okay. Ten-time NBA all-star, hall of famer, member of the Dream Team. Those Dream Team items, again I've talked about it, I hate to keep reiterating this, but people need Stockton to fill out a lot of Dream Team stuff. They probably already have Jordan on there, they're just waiting on John Stockton. Stockton did do a book signing probably about five years ago and I was able to get a couple jerseys in there. I remember selling those for $400 and thinking “Wow I did pretty good for myself.” What a dummy I was. Those are probably a $1,000 jersey right now, at least. Again, I don't know of an autographed signing that he's ever done and he's very reclusive, so kind of the opposite of Reggie Miller.

You just don't hear much about John Stockton anymore. I just don't think he likes signing and I don't blame him. I just don't think he likes signing. Dual signed items with Karl Malone would be absolutely epic. I mean just incredible. Get some team USA stuff. Some jazz stuff as far as jerseys go. I mean the team USA things, there's just a lot of stuff collectors need them on. You can get them on some rookie cards, some flir cards. Will a signing happen with him? Stockton's young enough, he's healthy enough, and there's a enough demand for him. I think eventually he will do one. Who will it be with, I really don't know. My guess is that it's gonna have to be somebody who he personally knows or personally knows him very well. He's got an intimate relationship with him to where he trusts him and where he can kind of make it on his own terms, but as far as like a company like Fanatics doing it with him, I really don't see him doing kind of like a big deal signing. I see him doing like an autograph signing with like 200 pieces.  Like “This is all I'm doing, I'm signing for one hour, and then I'll see you again in 10 more years.”

I just don't see him signing for thousands of thousands of pieces or signing an exclusive deal. Definitely not doing that. So that's just my opinion here but somebody personally close to him is probably gonna have to make that happen.

So who is the non-player autograph? Collectors definitely want this one to happen. He's probably more known for being a head coach. Again, like I said, everyone associated with Jordan has an autograph demand. This one is Phil Jackson. Now coaches for the most part obviously don't sell as well as players, but I think Phil Jackson is kind of a little different breed on this one, and here's why. He's a two-time NBA champion as a player for the Knicks, hall of famer, is a head coach 11-time NBA champion as head coach with the bulls, and also the Lakers. He's tied in with iconic players Jordan, Pippen, Kobe, and Shaq. I mean those four guys are synonymous with championships. I mean those four guys are basically what we grew up on watching basketball with. There's just so much collectors would need them on.  If you want to add them on to some team signed stuff, you could do dual sign things with Jordan, or with Kobe, or with Shaq, Pip, and whatever you wanted to do. Again, I can't remember a signing that he's done. Now, him being a former bulls coach it'd be great to get him out like at the National. Of course that's up in Rosemont. That would be iconic, but again he's head coach of two of the most important franchises in really all of sports. Bulls and also the Lakers as well, so the demand would just be absolutely incredible. Once again, that needs to happen, dealers out there, if you're watching this, man make it happen. I will help you sell it.

So anyways, hope you guys enjoyed this. I enjoyed making it for you guys. I was thinking of Karl Malone but he's done a couple recent signings within the last few years, David Robinson as well has done a couple of signings.

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