Here are some thoughts from Jun (ebayID: rare23air83) about the current state of the Jordan market on ebay:
First off, eBay is arguably the #1 source of collectibles bought and sold worldwide. The Jordan market is incredibly hot right now as we all know. There are record sales every week on eBay. And even on forums and conventions around the world which we cannot track. From a person who has been in the hobby for 15 years, I’ve ALWAYS seen MJ cards bringing in high premiums, although not as high as this current era.
But really, it all comes down to the most fundamental economic model, supply and demand. Not only MJ cards but for everything else as well. Michael Jordan cards have always been limited and high in demand ever since I can remember it. The demand can change throughout the years, but the supply AT BEST will stay the same or grow lower with time.
The great thing about Michael Jordan is… well, he’s simply the greatest basketball player ever. He is also arguably the greatest athlete of all time. He was already named the #1 Athlete of the Century above everyone. His legacy has already been written and stamped, so there’s not even a risk that his name and his legacy will lose its reputation. Every new blazing rookie that comes out of college or high school into the NBA is compared to the greatest and questioned if they’ll be “the next Jordan.” But time and time again when they seem to fail to even come close, people revert back to how great MJ was, and the hype is reborn again. This seems to happen almost every year like a cycle. Personally, I don’t think we’ll see anyone like MJ. His skills, his legacy, his persona, his personality, etc. He was the perfect “hero” for kids and adults all over the globe. He is still the 2nd most popular ATHLETE in the world even after all these years, not playing a single sport. All these say a lot. So unlike collecting new rookies with high risks that can either surge high in price or drop cold after a few bad seasons, MJ cards are always a safe bet to put your money into, and collectors have known this time and time again.
Another contributing factor may be because of Panini taking over. People are realizing how much better older cards are. And when it comes to older cards, nothing beats MJ cards. Also, the NBA lockout. Like you mentioned in your blog, MJ cards are surely going to be in the forefront of the minds of collectors/dealers, and the demand is yet again rising hard and fast like it did in the 90’s when Jordan was still sweeping all of NBA. Except this time, the supply is lower than it used to be, and the demand seems to keep rising more and more without a limit. This in itself is causing even more demand, making his cards absolutely SURGE in value.
eBay has millions of shoppers on it at any given point. So it’s obvious to say you will see all sorts of buyers/sellers/collectors. Out of the many, yes, a number of eBay MJ buyers are sellers that buy and “flip” it for higher prices a few weeks later. A number of them are collectors just wanting the card in their private collection, willing to pay high dollars. To some, it’s even a game that brings a little more excitement to the hobby, as I’m sure landing a sweet deal on a high demand card that you sell for a good amount of profit soon afterwards, is an exciting and fun experience. Either way, everything contributes to why MJ cards are rising in value and selling for record high prices. People want them. No matter how much it costs. To someone, that same card could be worth up to $5k whereas another collector wouldn’t shell out $500 for the card. So even if Beckett or any other price listers put a value on the card, it ultimately comes down to what people are willing to pay for the card, and boy has MJ cards been breaking out of book value territory. If ANYONE’S cards/memorabilia has the power to do that, it’s no surprise that it’s none other than Michael Jordan. Who else?
Past, present or future… MJ cards and collectibles will always be nothing but $$$. In my opinion, this is just one of the many surges we have seen and will continue to see in the many years to come.