Dominique Wilkins’ rookie card can be found in 1986-87 Fleer, and currently sells for five figures. Why is it so valuable, and are there any other options to chase?
Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins is one of the NBA’s greatest players, as a nine-time All-Star who spent 12 seasons with the Hawks. A true pioneer, his dunking ability earned him the nickname “the Human Highlight Film”.
He was drafted third in 1982 by the Utah Jazz, before being traded to the Hawks, where he was their leading scorer for the majority of his time spent with the franchise. You’ll have to wait until 1986 for Wilkins’ true rookie card, but there are a variety of interesting early options to look out for.
The Best Dominique Wilkins Rookie Cards
There’s only one true Dominique Wilkins rookie card, but we’ve included an XRC from his NBA debut, and the famous Fleer sticker.
3. 1983-84 Star Dominique Wilkins XRC #263 (eBay)
1983-84 Star is where you’ll find Dominique Wilkins’ first ever. It was the debut NBA release for the brand, and it has a red border to match the Atlanta Hawks jersey colors. Wilkins was also included in the All-Rookies set with a different image, that has a yellow border.
An XRC, both cards use a great action shot of Wilkins completing a customary dunk. Sets were limited to a reported total of 5,000, and the cards were only made available via mail-order. One of the reasons for the XRC designation is the method of release, as cards were sent out in teams, rather than individually.
2. 1986-87 Fleer Sticker Dominique Wilkins RC #11 (eBay)
The 1986 Fleer sticker insert accompanies the popular base set, including a selection (11) of the best players from the collection. Wilkins is the final star to make the cut, and each player went on to become a Hall of Famer.
A simple design sees a yellow tab on the left containing the player name, team, and a small Fleer logo. Action shots are used for all 11 stickers, and they were found at a rate of one per pack.
1. 1986-87 Fleer Dominique Wilkins RC #121 (eBay)
Dominique Wilkins’ RC in the 1986-87 Fleer set is somewhat overshadowed by Michael Jordan. Regardless, both players share a rookie card within the fabled collection, which has a familiar red, white, and blue border. Wilkins is pictured during his time spent with the Hawks, in a close-up shot with his mouth open.
PSA 10 copies of this rookie card are reasonably rare. There are only 94 copies on the pop report as of now.
Dominique Wilkins Rookie Cards: Are They Worth It?
With fewer than 100 PSA 10 copies of the 1986-87 Fleer RC at the current time of writing, it’s a hyper-rare collectible at the high-end.
The most recent sale was for a flat $12,600, dropping to less than $1,000 for a Mint 9. In comparison, ungraded copies come in at roughly $60. There’s something to suit every budget, and it’s not tough to find a copy to add to your collection. The Fleer sticker is an even cheaper option, and I’ve seen ungraded versions sell for less than $10 in recent months.
Dominique Wilkins Rookie Cards: Final Thoughts
Wilkins is undoubtedly one of the best players from his era. He thoroughly earned his highlight reel status as a master of the windmill dunk.
As for why his Fleer RC is so valuable, he’s a Hall of Famer, who put up great numbers with the Hawks. It’s one of the most important sets within the hobby, and there’s an association with MJ that always causes prices to rise.
The Wilkins RC is always going to be one of the more interesting cards from the late 1980s. That said, it does come with a premium price tag if you’re looking at pristine copies.