Connor Bedard is shaking up the sports card market

Sports card company Upper Deck has released their flagship Series Two collection sets, and the card collecting community has been going wild over them. The sets, released on March 6th, are one of the most sought-after sets of hockey cards every year. The demand for these sets comes from the Young Guns rookie cards, which feature the best young stars from today’s game.  This year, it’s little different. 

The anticipation for this year’s Series Two release have come down to just one man. Chicago Blackhawks Rookie Connor Bedard. 

Bedard made his stardom in the hockey scene during his time playing for the Regina Pats in the Western Hockey League. Bedard was unstoppable during his time with the team, recording 71 goals and 143 points in just 57 regular season games during his final year with the team. He broke decade old records with the Pats and went on to be drafted first overall by the Blackhawks at just 18 years old. But is it too early to have his sports card valued so high?

“It’s good and bad in ways because it brings a lot of people into the hobby that want to chase him, similar to when Connor McDavid came in,” says Eli Newsen, influencer and owner of North of the Boarder cards.  

The boxes containing these sets of cards are retailing for $329 Canadian at most local hobby and card shops. Each Series Two box includes 12 packs containing 12 cards each. Along with Young Guns, collectors can look forward to other collectible sets like Dazzlers, Population Count, Fluorescence, and Highlighters. 

Quite a bit of controversy surrounds the price. The Series One boxes of 2023-24 were selling for around $159 a box. That is nearly a $200 increase in price for the Series Two. This has caused outrage in the card collecting community, with people stating the price point to be outrageous. That is unless you pull a Connor Bedard Young Guns card. 

“The prices are pretty crazy. I know his Young Guns are going for 700 to 800 right now. They originally came out at about 1000,” says Newsen.     

The Series Two collection features 20 different Connor Bedard Rookie cards, along with other rookies like Anaheim Duck Leo Carlsson and Buffalo Sabre Zach Benson. But there is one card that’s the most sought after. The Connor Bedard Outburst Gold card. Only one singular copy of the card exists.  

With so much anticipation and build to the release of these cards, collectors are doing anything to get their hands on sets or have a chance at the one-million-dollar card. 

“A lot of the people who are very big into the hobby or have a lot of money, they are kind of hoarding some of the cases, which are causing the prices to be driven up,” says Newsen, while explaining why some of the prices are inflating. “The biggest thing that surprised me was the one-million-dollar bounty that was put on the one of one rookie.”

That is right. Dave and Adam’s card world, a leader in the collectibles industry, posted on March 4th that they have placed a bounty of one million US dollars for the one of one gold Connor Bedard card. This is not the first time Dave and Adam’s have placed bounties on sports collectibles. Most recently, they have put a $200k bounty out for a Babe Ruth Bowman Chrome Prospect Retrofractor one of one. 

The 107% increase in price between the two different series sets has opened some jaws in the sports collecting community, but I guess with the chance of one million dollars, the price becomes easier to comprehend. No one knows for sure where Bedard’s Young Guns cards will be priced years from now, being the unestablished player he is, and with a price tag that is tipping the top, collectors suggest looking to buy Bedard’s rookie cards in the off season. 

“If I were to buy a Bedard, it would probably be in the offseason because in the off season, not many people are talking about hockey and the hype goes down around his name and the prices will drop,” says Newsen, explaining his strategy to getting a good deal on a Connor Bedard card. 

Newsen said he would much rather spend his money on a similar card with players like Connor McDavid or Nathan Mackinnon as they have established themselves in the league as one of the best. And with Mackinnon’s Young Guns card ranging around the same price as Bedard’s, it seems like the safer option when talking money right now. Bedard will have to prove his worth on the ice a little more before we can say his Young Guns card pricing is reasonable. 

Most Valuable Rookie Cards by Llumbit