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BGS Pop 1 of 2 - One Higher - Jersey # Serial 8/13

Impeccable firmly establishes itself as a top tier Panini brand, and clearly the best Panini brand for pure auto cards, which collectors and investors find classy and clean in the age of auto patch overload. Impeccable has a water ink style background, giving a vibe of fine art captured on palm sized cards, combing nicest attributes in both worlds. This offering together with All stars 8/18 in another listing are probably THE best Kobe impeccable cards by far. /13 is a super rare print run that allows possibility of jersey number; and the grading seems to be an undergrading as the card has very strong eye appeal. The main flagship sets for Impeccable are the ones featuring a foiled number in the background, celebrating the player's achievement or key number that defines his legacy in a brief snapshot. Those are the essence of the product. Kobe has two years of releases in 2016-17 and 2017-18 in pack-pulled form, with the third year 2018-19 in redemption not redeemed in the end as exact cards. Those redemption cards have recently been replaced by various late Kobe autos by Panini (but not in a faithful way) which are selling on fire (but they are not pack inserted, nor produced for 2018-19 sets); and among several sets, only one of them has foil number in the background. All these are nice cards no doubt, but to debate about the best, one needs to take into account of rarity in print run as well as whether a true jersey number (a jersey number worn by the player at the time of the action shot) is possible and whether the theme is strong and representative. Counter-intuively, the second year (offered here) has been in the most demand and performing the strongest prior to Kobe’s late autos, because (i) the foil number in the background in 2017-18 becomes more pronounced, more mesmerizing and texturized and with crazy refracting pattern, (ii) print run becomes much less by choosing achievement corresponding to a small number, and (iii) strong signer group in each set. To have an overall picture, there are three such sets in the initial year 2016-17 with foil numbering in background design, all featuring Kobe in 24 uniform; here, 20 season one /20 makes true jersey number impossible, 81 point one /81 just has too large a print run, 24/24 is very cool but foil number theme being jersey number has been featured in three more sets since, making it slightly less unique. This card here is the second year 2017-18 issue, all featuring Kobe in 8 jersey (together with All stars appearance /18) is one of the rarest with jersey number 8 possible. With these objective rationals understood, this card and All Stars /18 in another listing are clearly the best Kobe impeccable cards period. Collecting is about collecting substance over hype, which is the only way to stand the test of time. Various 2019-20 Impeccable Kobe autos are on fire and hailed as Kobe’s late autos which is a fitting tribute to Kobe’s greatness, which has lifted earlier releases also, also making collectors and investors realize and start to chase the real essence of this product. The long term prospect of those latest 2019-20 direct issues for replacements remains to be seen, but impeccable Kobe autos in this very auction is the true essence and a guaranteed bet and absolute asset with zero risk and still largely untapped potential. The action shot features a confident Kobe wearing a gold logoman which is in his rookie season, so 8 is the jersey number he was wearing then and therefore this is the true jersey number. 13 is a very meaningful number for Kobe. It represents despite being precocious, how he worked hard to defy all odds and rose through ranks to pave the way to become the eternal legend we know and love now. Being a guard going directly from high school to NBA, in an era where big men and more tested players were more trusted by talent evaluators, was an impossible feat. After Kobe schooling defensive specialist Cooper, Jerry West uttered Kobe’s workout was the best he had seen and orchestrated a move to land him and pair with Shaq and the rest is history. This is as good a single snap shot in summarizing Kobe's legend as it can get. Besides just not many cards that are numbered /13, which makes it very unique. Again, this is one of the best looking Kobe productions from the year and scarcely seen with a print run of just 13. Offered here is a unicorn example as it sports a Kobe jersey number 8/13 in very meaningful and yet rare print run, full of irreplaceable and incomparable traits discussed above. Coupled with a pristine autograph and overall qualities which place this among the markets finest. A sure fire investment piece which should be heavily targeted. One of over 22,000 cards, lots and sets up for bid in our 1st Auction of 2021. Click on the link above to view the other PWCC auction lots.

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