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Rare Kevin Durant “Pre-rookie” Card Up For Bid at Goldin Auctions

A 2006 Topps card signed by KD himself features the two-time NBA champ at the McDonald’s All-American Game.

In the world of sports cards, there is rarely a more valuable version of a star player’s wax than a rookie card. Devotees will be familiar with Kevin Durant’s 2007 Topps Chrome rookie card featuring a baby-faced KD decked out in a green Seattle SuperSonics jersey, but there’s another of the two-time Finals MVPs cards currently up for bid at Goldin Auctions that enthusiasts need to know about.

And it’s even earlier than a rookie.

Thanks to that special status, overall rarity, and Durant’s incredible 2021 postseason performance, this 2006 Topps McDonald’s All-American card has a chance to do some big-time numbers.

“It is his first-ever card issued by a major manufacturer and a full year prior to his 2007 cards, making it in my eyes a true rookie,” Goldin Auctions founder and executive chairman Ken Goldin told Boardroom.

Thanks to a contractual dispute, PSA’s records maintain that just 16 of KD’s 2006 McDonald’s All-American cards exist, and the version up for auction is a 1-of-3 hologram edition graded as a PSA 9.

Despite the Nets being eliminated in a hard-fought seven-game playoff series with the Bucks Saturday, the auction still comes at a fine time. Durant put together an incredible playoff run, averaging more than 33 points per game while hitting clutch shot after clutch shot for a hobbled Brooklyn team.

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Back in March, Durant’s Rookie Exquisite CGS 9 Mint sold for a hair under $800,000 which set the record for a Kevin Durant card. With bidding on the 2006 Topps auto already at $27,000 and the auction not closing until 10 p.m. ET on June 26, this uncommon KD “pre-rookie” card can make major inroads in the same way that Bowman’s prospect cards have done for baseball.

“All of modern baseball’s highest-priced rookie cards — Trout, Betts, Acuña, etc. — are Bowman Chrome prospect cards.  If major manufacturers issued licensed cards like this one, I believe they deserve rookie status,” Goldin said.

In 2007, Topps and Upper Deck shared the NBA’s trading card licensing, which has given us more than 30 versions of Durant’s rookie cards. Upper Deck also released several different versions of rookie patch autograph cards for the 2007-08 rookie class, which makes this limited print of KD in his high school All-American jersey stand out even more.

The auction will carry through June 26th and with no sales to reference, it is going to be a lot of fun to see how much it can run. With the recency of Durant’s iconic performance and the novelty of these short print All-American cards, it’s safe to say that this 2006 Topps offering has serious long-haul potential.

“The market has been strong all year [for KD cards],” Goldin said. “He’s the most in-demand veteran of the 2020-21 season.”