- User Rating: Very Good
Pros:Kobe Bryant, Rookie Card, Photo on the Front, Information
Cons:Distractions on image, Quality Issues
The Bottom Line: Kobe Bryan'ts rookie card from NBA Hoops. Here's one that everyone can afford.
Kobe Bryant is still among the NBA's best, even though he has lost a step due to age. Yes at 33, he's simply falling apart, and just cannot take it anymore. Sports is a cruel business, but Kobe Bryant is still a great basketball player, and his MVP awards and rings on his fingers are an indicator of his success. He has been the dominant force in the NBA for years, even with the emergence of folks like King James and Mr. Durant from the Thunder. Simply put, he's a winner, even if he's not as quick as he used to be. He is going to be a first ballot Hall of Famer, and although his squabbles with Shaq, along with the "other ring" have provided tabloid fodder, its what he's done on the court that matters with his card.
If you want an average rookie card, that's not going to cost you the price of the diamond he bought his then wife at the time, consider the 1996-97 NBA Hoops version. Its #281, and easy to find. This card has some issues, but I do love the photo on the front. It shows him on the paint, in his uniform, with that intense look that still remains very much a part of his game. If you want to a card of that competitive stare, this might be one for you. Aside from the front picture, I do not like a lot of the "splashy graphics." For instance, the seal of rookie, the big print of his name, just get in the way of this. I find it to be "noisy" from a visual standpoint.
As for the back, I like it. It shows him with a basketball, and reminded me of how he was traded for Vlade Divac. I think the Lakers got the better end of that deal. You learn about his background, and how as a high school player, he set a lot of records. This success has been proven on the NBA stage, and it describes his playing career, with the image in the background. That looks cool, and this laid back approach, with information is appreciated. This is the way I wish most basketball cards, and for that matter, other sports cards were manufactured.
What about the quality? I'll give it an average rating. These cards don't seem to have the durability of the Upper Decks, or even some of the Topps and other brands I've become used to. While I have kept this in a protective sleeve, I don't think the cardboard used is of the highest quality. Its pun time, NBA Hoops "cut corners", in the process. That is unfortunate, and that is why I think this card doesn't have the value, that other Kobe Bryant RC's have. While it has not diminished the good photograph, or the back's information being able to be read, I worry over time, that it might not hold up as well as some other brands. This is a good card, but not a great one.
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Amount Paid (US$): 9
Type of Toy: Other
Age Range of Child: Whole Family