Why am I showing my top three Michael Jordan cards? The quick answer is because I’m replying to the House Of Jordans podcasts’ call to action. The team focuses on Instagram, but on their most recent show asked us to share our top three cards via social media.
A couple of the notes were that you don’t have to own the card and also, it’s not just the most valuable cards. Also, they want to know the “why,” which is a big part of me sharing mine. I’m not a high-end card snob. I don’t buy expensive cards just so I can show them off, as I feel many others do.
My most “valuable” cards have stories and memories attached. Though I don’t (currently) own any of my top three cards below, there’s a non-monetary reason for each of them.
Michael Jordan Cards Honorable Mention
Why is this an honorable mention card? I was a baseball kid. I liked football, basketball and hockey, but baseball was the love of my life then and it was really cool to see Michael Jordan cards of him swinging a bat.
The card was a bit pricy for 12-year old me and I didn’t have one. As time marched on, we understood the “junk wax era” of cards and I’ve picked up a handful of these at card shows over the years.
Why? I’m not from Chicago or anywhere in the vicinity. Thinking of Chicago in the 1980s and 1990s, two things come to mind, Michael Jordan and Harry Caray. I actually own this card as well, yet I own none of the ones in my top three Michael Jordan cards.
In the winter and spring of 1993, the eighth-grade boys at South Jr. High were all buying basketball cards looking for Shaquille O’Neal rookies. Okay, maybe it wasn’t ALL the boys, but guys that were sports fans bought packs that never had before and really didn’t again after that.
If you didn’t pull a Shaq, you wanted to pull a Beam Team insert. Inserts weren’t too much of a thing yet, this was THE insert set we wanted a card from and the Michael Jordan card is the one you wanted. It was a cool time that so many kids that didn’t collect before or after were, and would trade cards with kids they might not otherwise spoke to.
At a time in life (early adolescence) that can be rough, in some ways this card (and Shaq rookies) momentarily brought a little bit of peace to the hallways. That’s a fond memory for me.
#2 – 1990-91 Skybox #41
My parents bought me a couple packs of 1989-90 Hoops basketball, since it was the first year I played basketball. I didn’t pull a Michael Jordan. The 1990-91 Skybox cards were extremely cool to the sixth-grade boys at First Ward Elementary, including myself, and my parents bought me a lot more than Hoops from the year prior.
While I don’t recall the moment I pulled a Michael Jordan card, there’s no doubt that I did and it was the first one that I had. That, along with the set’s design, will always bring back fond memories. I’ve only recently gotten back into basketball and wish Panini Status would be a go-forward set. It reminds me so much of the first two years of Skybox basketball.
On a side note, I retired from organized basketball after sixth grade with 1.5 points average. Per season.
I’m sure that Michael Jordan collectors, and maybe everyone, that reads this list and sees this is my #1 card will roll their eyes. Remember, this is MY list and there is a reason for all of my selections.
Why is this my number one? Because this card represents my #1 memory of Michael Jordan. Remember, I wasn’t a Jordan fan or a Bulls fan. However, I was born in Birmingham, Alabama. My grandmother (who loved baseball and was influential in my love of sports and cards) lived there my entire life until her passing. Multiple aunts, uncles and cousins lived in Birmingham throughout their lives.
Two of those cousins, Jeff and Doug, are the closest I had to brothers (I do have a younger sister). I’d spend a few weeks in Birmingham most summers and a lot of it was at their house, doing card things, video games, TV and all the things kids do. We also made it to quite a few Barons games.
On July 30, 1994, my grandma took Jeff, Doug and I to a Barons game. We enjoyed the game as always and at the souvenir stand I got my Barons team set which had this card (that didn’t survive one of my multiple card purges, unfortunately). Little did we know that we would witness Michael Jordan hit his first professional home run.
We immediately turned the television to ESPN SportsCenter (remember how good it was in the 1990s?) once home. Nobody shot good footage of the home run. I don’t remember all the details, but I know it was a late inning homer, the Barons were losing pretty badly, and it wasn’t expected that Jordan would even bat again. I guess the video crews had left. OOPS!
That is the biggest moment of sports history I was present for. THAT is why my number one card is, well, number one.
What is your list, and why did you select those cards? I’d love it if you commented below, or wrote a blog post or recorded a YouTube video and shared with me below.
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