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1994 was the start of something special in the NBA. Jason Kidd was selected by the Dallas Mavericks as the second overall pick in the draft, seen as perhaps the most talented prospect of the draft.
And those who predicted greatness to him were right. Kidd won rookie of the year 1995, but that was just the start of his epic journey in the NBA, as he went on to win many, many more trophies…
Let’s take a look at the best Jason Kidd rookie card that you can get, no matter your budget.
1994 Topps Jason Kidd Rookie Card #37
The first card on this list is one of the most iconic cards from the 90s. It’s the Topps Jason Kidd rookie card.
You can see just how happy Kidd was when he was drafted by the Mavs, as shown by his big, bright smile.
This card is an excellent addition to your portfolio of rookie cards if you don’t want to overspend on a rookie card, but still get something that will feel very special, especially if you loved watching Jason Kidd in his prime.
Like many other cards from the 90s, this Topps one features Kidd on draft night in his suit and a Dallas Mavericks cap as he gets picked as the second overall pick by the Mavs. And the rest, as they say, is history.
1994 Upper Deck Jason Kidd Rookie Card #160
Next up, the Upper Deck card from 1994, which is one of his signature rookie cards. It’s awfully similar to the Topps rookie card, although there are some differences between the two.
He’s still wearing his suit and Mavs cap on draft night, but there’s no wide smile that we can see on the Topps card.
Still, there are some other things that might draw your attention to this card.
Namely, the design of the card is a bit different and perhaps a touch more elegant than the Topps card. I personally quite like the black and blue border on the left hand-side of the card, which seems to fit the image nicely.
The Upper Deck card is one of the more easily available Kidd rookie cards today, so it’s not among the most expensive cards, making it suitable for those on a budget.
1994 Hoops Jason Kidd RC #317
Along with the two above cards, the 1994 Hoops Kidd rookie card forms the “Holy Trinity” of commercial and budget rookie cards, if we may call them that.
It certainly is a bit cheaper when we compare the prices of this card to the prices of the more premium cards (which we’ll take a look at later on).
The Hoops card follows a different design path than the Topps or Upper Deck cards, though.
It features an image of Kidd in action, seemingly trying to deny one of the opponent players a basket. And Kidd was quite a good player both on the offense and the defense, capable of stealing balls and getting rebounds for his team along with the many assists he provided.
1994 Topps Embossed Jason Kidd Rookie Card #102
Topps Embossed is yet another card that you can consider if you’re looking for a cheaper alternative.
This brand is not among the most well-known brands and at the time, it was dominated by larger cards like Topps, Upper Deck, Hoops and others.
One of the main distinctive features of this card is its design. It has a silver, glossy background and an action shot of Kidd looking for his team mates during an attack.
This is one of the more affordable Kidd rookie cards that you can add to your collection.
1994 Collector’s Choice Draft Class Jason Kidd RC #408
Moving away from the budget cards we have the Collector’s Choice 1994 Kidd rookie card.
While this card is not his most expensive rookie card, it’s somewhere in the middle between budget cards and premium cards.
It does have a bit more sophisticated feel to it as compared to the Topps or UD cards, though.
This thing will cost you around the thousand dollar mark if in top condition, although it can be a bit more budget-friendly if you can find an ungraded card or lower graded cards.
1994 Flair Jason Kidd Rookie Card #202
Flair is the preferred option for those collectors who want an image-heavy card rather than one with a lot of graphical elements on it.
It still feels elegant, though.
The card is split into two “pieces”, where on one side you can see Kidd with the ball in his hands and on the other, you can see him driving towards the hoop.
You can get the Flair card for relatively cheap as the higher graded cards will cost you several hundred dollars. You’ll also find a lot of ungraded cards for this version of the card.
Initially, Kidd was seen as a pure playmaker capable of providing many assists for his team mates. But as the years rolled on, he developed a strong shooting habit and was even capable of becoming the third-best three point shooter in NBA history when he retired.
1994 Finest Refractor Jason Kidd RC #286
Moving on to the premium cards, we have the 1994 Finest refractor. This refractor card is among the most expensive Jason Kidd rookie cards.
In the world of 1990s cards where there were not many autographs on cards and jersey patches, these shiny cards felt like the most premium cards in the world.
This is why refractors were often preferred to the base cards, because they felt special and different.
Get the refractor if you have the money to get it and add it to your collection, but you can also consider the less shinier base card.
The base Finest card is a nice alternative if you want something a bit less expensive. Yes, it doesn’t have as much shine as the refractor, but it’s not that dissimilar and it had a relatively large print run, so it’s still widely available today.
The bonus of the base card is that it’s not as expensive as the refractor, and much easier to get. So if you’re looking for a relatively cheap Kidd rookie card, the Finest card is your go-to option.
1994 SP Foil Die-Cut Jason Kidd Rookie Card #D2
Here it is, the legendary SP Foil die-cut Kidd rookie card.
This is one of the most beautiful cards from the 1990s overall, as the die-cut variation of the SP Foil card had only 18 copies to its name.
The die-cut variety of the card is no doubt the most expensive Jason Kidd rookie card on the market at the moment. The biggest factor for that is its limited run, but you simply can’t deny how beautiful it looks.
And for 1990s cards, it carries something special that not many other cards had at the time. Its die-cut finish certainly makes it feel special and different. If you’re looking to spend several thousand dollars to add this one to your collection, it’s the best that you can get.
Overall, the SP Foil base card is nothing special in itself, as it has a pretty extensive print run and it’s nothing special in terms of looks. Here’s what it looks like:
The base version of this card is much more affordable than the die-cut version. It will only cost you a few hundred dollars at best, so you can consider this one as an alternative for the die-cut version if you like the look of the card.
Jason Kidd Rookie Card Buyer’s Guide
Jason Kidd was one of the best point guards of his era. Today, we still consider him to be one of the top playmakers of all time, so his rookie cards will always hold value.
When he won his only NBA ring in 2011, he beat the likes of LBJ and Dwyane Wade to get it, so there’s no denying that he’s up there with the very best the game has to offer.
One of the main limiting factors of his rookie cards is that he wasn’t a very prolific scorer – at least when compared to LBJ and Wade. He was more of a team player, and perhaps that’s better to have sometimes than a player that would only look to score for his own stats.
If you’re tight on a budget and you’re not willing to spend more than a few hundred dollars, then I can recommend you Topps, Upper Deck, Hoops, Finest base card, and the Topps Embossed card.
But if you’re a premium card collector and you have money to splash, then there’s not denying that the Finest refractor is the best option for you. If you really want the best of the best, then go for the SP Foil die-cut card. This one will cost you the most, but it’s also the rarest Kidd rookie card, so it’s worth it if you want the best of the best.