So… what do all these numbers mean when it comes to figuring out what card to invest in, and what’s potentially overpriced vs underpriced?
As mentioned above, according to the latest PSA population report, there are currently 2,634 PSA 10 graded 2007 Topps #2 Kevin Durant Rookie cards on record.
In comparison, Luka Doncic's 2018 Panini Prizm Base #280 rookie card currently registers 12,844 PSA 10s (which is expected to continue to grow at a faster clip than Durant's, given its pack recency and continued grading). In other words, the 2018 Panini Prizm is a more recent set and has greater print runs while people are still actively opening new packs.
Looking at the above numbers of recent sales for the PSA 10 rookie cards, KD's card is selling for $1,474 each, while Luka's are currently averaging a sale price of $1,833. You can find these numbers for yourself by searching eBay’s recently sold listings.
Backing the total PSA 10 population numbers and current eBay sale prices into a "total market capitalization" calculation for each player, we see the following:
- Kevin Durant: 2,634 PSA 10s * $1,474/card = $3,882,516
- Luka Doncic: 12,844 PSA 10s * $1,833/card = $23,543,052
It’s quite an imbalance if you assume that the two players are at least approximately similar in starpower and proven ability to play the game at the highest levels. That’s before you factor in the fact that Kevin Durant’s list of accomplishments is legendary status even if he never played again.
Depending on how we view the current market overall, you could draw a few possible relative “expected value” calculation scenarios to compare and contrast what a more rational price should be, per card.
Scenario #1: Luka Doncic 2018 Panini Prizm Base is properly priced
Say, for example, we assume that Luka's card is currently properly priced at roughly $1,833 per card (based on his performance and potential), and that demand for the two players' rookies is expected to be similar. This implies that KD's card is considerably underpriced currently based on its per card sale price and total PSA population. Taking Luka's total market cap and dividing it by KD's card population, we find that the expected price per KD rookie in market equilibrium should actually be $8,938 per card.
Scenario #2: Kevin Durant 2007 Topps Base is underpriced
But say, for example, we actually feel that Durant deserves a higher market valuation than Doncic given his lengthier career, proven stat line, and two rings under his belt. If we apply a 30% value premium to KD and hold Luka's current market cap constant, Kevin's rookie should be selling for $11,619. That’s assuming that KD is 30% “better” than Luka and that his card price would eventually reflect that.
Scenario #3: Luka Doncic 2018 Panini Prizm Base is overpriced
Heading in a more conservative direction, suppose we assume the opposite scenario: that Durant is properly priced, and Luka is overvalued. If we adjust Luka's expected price per card based on KD's current market cap, we find that each of Luka's 12,844 PSA 10 rookies should only be selling for $302/each.
With this all being laid out, it will be fun to see where the market takes these two cards over the next 12 months and even 12 years. Does Luka have an NBA Finals MVP in his future? Most don’t…
Time will tell. Until then, thanks for reading, Hobby fans. Let us know what you think in the comments, including any Data Debate requests you would be interested in seeing.
To learn more about the sports card industry and stay up to date with all the latest news and trends, listen to our weekly Card Talk podcast here and follow us on Instagram @CardTalkPod.