Arguably the NBA’s top young star, Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Dončić has become one of the most talented players on the court and one of the most expensive cards off of it. The insane popularity of Dončić and Atlanta Hawks star Trae Young has turned the 2018 NBA Draft class into one of the most expensive buys in recent years.
With dozens of Dončić rookie cards from across the 2018 season, use the Sports Card Investor guide below to see the key cards we think you should be targeting. The guide is broken into tiers ranging from lower-end value options to high-end and the rarest and most expensive sets.
The Value Tier Includes cards with high print runs or lower-quality cardstock. A good fit for new collectors or those on a limited budget.
Hoops #268: This set provides the first look at rookies in their NBA uniforms, but also includes a fantastic lineup of inserts if base cards aren’t your preference. Shop now >
Donruss #177: A classic and clean look, Donruss is arguably the most popular among the Value tier. Watch for low-numbered Laser or Press Proof parallels. Show now >
Threads #141: Collectors can chase the Association, Icon and Statement image variations or hunt for the Dazzle parallels, which add quite a bit of pop to the design. Shop now >
Status #122: Despite being in the Value tier, Status is a favorite among many collectors because of its unique design and parallels. Die-cuts are legit chase cards that can sell for incredible value on the secondary market if you’re lucky enough to pull one. Shop now >
This tier includes cards from the most popular sets across both retail and hobby formats. Typically easy to buy or sell when needed. Parallels like Prizm Silver and Optic Holo are among the most popular variations.
Mosaic #68: Not yet its own release in 2018, Mosaic is a strong but loud product with a variety of color-based parallels to chase. Shop now >
Optic #177: A step down from Prizm, Optic is a chrome upgrade to Donruss’ Value rookie. Along with a clean base card, Optic features a strong lineup of inserts and parallels, including the incredibly popular short-printed Optic Holo. Shop now >
Prizm #280: Along with being the flagship brand for most modern rookies, the Dončić Prizm might be the iconic rookie from the 2018 class. Fast Break and Cracked Ice parallels are extremely popular while the Prizm Silver is the parallel for modern cards. Shop now >
Select #25: It’s not quite at the level of Optic or Prizm, but Select’s popularity is rising thanks to unique designs, three levels of rookies to chase and low-numbered die-cuts. Shop now >
MORE UNIQUE ROOKIES:
This tier Includes cards with lower print runs and cards from hobby-only products. Usually higher-quality cards than the Value or Popular Tiers, though not necessarily more popular or easier to buy or sell.
Crown Royale #63: While some collectors prefer vertical rookies compared to Crown Royale’s horizontal ones, the set is still a favorite among many collectors for its stunning die-cuts and Cracked Ice parallels. The ultra-rare Kaboom! set is also featured here for 2018. Shop now >
Court Kings #117: Incredible artwork paired with multiple levels of rookies to chase has Court Kings near the top of the 2018 releases for many. Though not quite as popular as Crown Royale’s Kaboom! set, Court Kings’ Aurora is one of the best from 2018. Shop now >
Revolution #128: Arguably the most unique card set every year, Revolution has an incredibly impressive lineup of parallels ranging from Astro and Impact to the ultra-rare Galactic. Revolution isn’t for everyone, but its parallels offer plenty to chase. Shop now >
RAREST AND MOST EXCLUSIVE:
We won’t spend much time here because this category is likely out of reach for most collectors due to price, but they are still fun to look at.
Sets like Flawless, Immaculate, Impeccable and National Treasures typically feature visually stunning artwork and low-numbered cards.
This is also where you’ll find Panini’s most impressive patches paired with high-quality on-card autographs. Don’t worry if this tier is too pricey as there’s plenty of options in other categories that could be perfect for your collection.
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