‘Pawn Stars’: Story Behind Rick Harrison Forking Over $25k for a Rare Basketball Card Collection

by Matthew Memrick

“Pawn Stars” star Rick Harrison recently picked up a rare signature collection of basketball cards for $25,000, and it may have been a steal.

It’s pure entertainment to watch for this old baseball card collector.

Especially with the sports card collectibles market once being in the toilet with collectors and fans. Harrison briefly saw some value in the basketball card game again and closed this deal. 

It makes me want to go in the closet and check my cards.

Breaking Down The Deal

In the Season 18 episode “Action Packed Pawn,” one seller comes into the shop, trying to get Rick Harrison to bite on some 1995 brand Action Packed cards. His backstory reveals the card haul came from a Las Vegas storage unit and the card company only did business from 1988 to 1995.

After the authentication, the seller started at $120,000 before Harrison got the collection down to $25,000. 

The owner explains the exceptional circumstances on the cards, and Harrison concludes the cards are an anomaly. 

The collection owner also says the cards are “remnants of a collection from the 1990s.”

Big Name Cards

There are some big named cards in the mix, including Bill Walton, Bill Bradley, Bob Cousey, and Bill Russell. The owner has at least 70 of the same autographed Russell card.

Sportscard expert Dan Wulkan said Russell’s autograph was so rare that the collection was unique when authenticating the cards.

According to Looper, Harrison typically doesn’t do deals that start so high in price. Add in the 507-card collection, and it’s a tough sell for the “Pawn Stars” star, who has to do more work to unload the set. Wulkan added his two cents, saying it would take Harrison years to get his value out of the cards. The expert doesn’t come up with a price, however.

When the dealing starts, Harrison doesn’t budge from the $25,000 price. He says he’s “buying himself a job” by taking on the cards. The seller also admits he’s unwilling to make an effort in the project, so he lets go of the cards after some thought.

Cha-ching! Harrison gets the cards and turns to the camera, joking that he’s now “in the basketball card business.” Good luck, Rick.

Cards Go For Big Bucks

The website eBay is a great place to turn to see if your cards are valuable. Plus, selling them there seems to be an excellent place to go. The “Pawn Stars” crew more than likely hip to this resource already.

One website, Wax Pack Gods, took a look at the 100 most expensive basketball cards sold on eBay in the last month. Here are the top two of what they found

Despite why you think about politics and NBA stars, these cards and their selling points are fantastic. One New Jersey seller unloaded L.A. Laker forward LeBron James’s card for a cool $160,000. Another star card featuring Hornets guard Ball is on the market for $140,000.