The Best Carmelo Anthony Rookie Cards to Collect

At the current time of writing, Carmelo Anthony is currently a free agent. Anthony is a ten-time NBA All-Star, who currently ranks 9th on the all time NBA scoring list. A superstar in his heyday, the best years of his career came when he played for the New York Knicks and Denver Nuggets.

What does the market look like for the best Carmelo Anthony rookie cards? Here’s a roundup with five of the best options. 

The Best Carmelo Anthony Rookie Cards 

Carmelo Anthony rookie cards were released in 2003-04. (As the third overall pick, he was included in the majority of basketball sets released that year.) 

5. 2003-04 Topps Chrome Carmelo Anthony RC #113 (eBay)

2003-04 Topps Chrome Carmelo Anthony RC #113

We’ll begin with the ever-popular flagship 2003-04 Topps Chrome set. It’s only a base card, but it’s worth a fair amount if it’s in pristine condition. There’s no patch or auto, but there are various valuable parallels to chase. 

For example, there are base Refractors, Black Refractors numbered to 500, and X-Fractors, numbered to 200. X-Fractors fall one per hobby box as a topper and come in a sealed magnetic case. Finally, Gold Refractors are one of the most popular and valuable parallel cards, limited to 50 copies for rookies from the set.

Check prices of 2003-04 Topps Chrome Carmelo Anthony RC on eBay

4. 2003-04 SPx Carmelo Anthony RC #153 Autograph Jersey #/750 (eBay)

2003-04 SPx Carmelo Anthony RC #153 Autograph Jersey #/750

The next card to make the list is the 2003-04 SPx autographed jersey. Limited to 750 copies, it’s not difficult to locate as of 2022. The patch isn’t the largest, while the design screams early 2000s. 

Despite the busy design, it’s still a decent RPA, and will complement any Carmelo Anthony card collection. The jersey piece comes from the 2003 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot. 

Check prices of 2003-04 SPx Carmelo Anthony RC on eBay

3. 2003-04 SP Authentic Carmelo Anthony RC #150 Autograph #/500 (eBay)

2003-04 SP Authentic Carmelo Anthony RC #150 Autograph #/500

The 2003-04 SP Authentic auto is one of the cleaner options released that year. From the Rookie Authentics subset, it features a print run of 500 copies, upping the rarity significantly compared to the average Anthony RC. The signature is on-card, with the serial number found on the front. 

There’s also a Limited parallel that has a print run of 50. It’s a rare edition that can be tough to locate. 

Check prices of 2003-04 SP Authentic Carmelo Anthony RC on eBay

2. 2003-04 Ultimate Collection Carmelo Anthony RC #129 Autograph #/250 (eBay)

2003-04 Ultimate Collection Carmelo Anthony RC #129 Autograph #/250

A premium option, this rare Carmelo Anthony RC auto is found in the 2003-04 Upper Deck Ultimate Collection. With a print run of just 250, the understated design is also a welcome change compared to the busier sets from the early 2000s. The signature is on-card, while pristine graded versions will easily sell for four figures. 

Check prices of 2003-04 Ultimate Collection Carmelo Anthony RC on eBay

1. 2003-04 Exquisite Collection Carmelo Anthony RC #76 Autograph Jersey #/99 (eBay)

2003-04 Exquisite Collection Carmelo Anthony RC #76 Autograph Jersey #/99

The 2003-04 Exquisite Collection Rookie Patch is one of the best premium options, combining a print run of 99 with an on-card auto and a player patch in the middle. A precursor for many modern sets, it’s especially important within the hobby. (After all, it ticks every box you could think of if you were designing a rare card.)

Whether it’s Anthony, LeBron James, or Dwyane Wade, this has to be the card to chase for the talented rookie class of 2003-04.

Check prices of 2003-04 Exquisite Collection Carmelo Anthony RC on eBay

Carmelo Anthony Rookie Cards: Buyers Guide 

What does the market look like for the best Carmelo Anthony rookie cards? Here are our thoughts regarding recent sales. 

The Best Cheap Carmelo Anthony Rookie Cards

There are various affordable Carmelo Anthony RCs for sale at any given time, and that includes graded versions. Options like the 2003-04 Topps Chrome card are always going to be popular with collectors given the brand awareness. In other words, there’s an option to suit almost every budget, and that includes cheaper autos. 

Check prices of 2003-04 Topps Chrome Carmelo Anthony RC on eBay

The Best Carmelo Anthony Rookie Card Investment 

Once again, we’d look no further than the 2003-04 Exquisite Collection Rookie Patch if you want the best Carmelo Anthony rookie card committed to cardboard. It comes with a premium valuation, and there were only 99 copies ever produced. It’s one of the more famous sets from the era, and it’s likely to hold value well.

Check prices of 2003-04 Exquisite Collection Carmelo Anthony RC on eBay

Carmelo Anthony Rookie Cards: Final Thoughts 

Anthony is a future Hall of Famer, and was once a true superstar. The years are advancing, and right now he is seen as nothing more than a role player. However, he can still do a job, even if retirement is likely to be on the horizon eventually. We’ll have to wait and see if he finds a team for the 2022/23 season. 

Carmelo Anthony rookie cards look to be a viable investment, especially as he must be seen as a lock for the Hall of Fame. Lest we forget, he’s a ten-time All-Star, and he’s ninth overall for all-time scoring. He’s also close to surpassing Shaquille O’Neal on that list. 

One reason for slightly lower prices is that Carmelo Anthony has not won any championships in his career. However, he’ll still be remembered as one of the greatest from his era at the very least. 

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