Franz Wagner is highly rated, even if he missed out on the Rookie of the Year award in 2022.
He has played for one of the worst teams statistically in the form of Orlando, even as the eighth overall selection in 2021 made the NBA’s All-Rookie First Team after strong individual displays this season.
We’re taking the opportunity to look at some of the best Franz Wagner rookie cards, after an impressive first year with the Orlando Magic.
The Best Franz Wagner Rookie Cards
Franz Wagner rookie cards were released during the 2021/22 season, and he was included in many major NBA sets as he was an early draft pick.
5. 2021 Donruss Franz Wagner RC #235 (eBay)
We begin with the flagship 2021-22 Donruss Basketball set, featuring a simple action shot of Wagner dribbling along the court.
There’s a ‘Rated Rookie’ logo in the top left corner, and a full rainbow of numbered parallels to chase. If you’re willing to spend a little more, there are also signed versions that come with a sticker auto.
- Base Parallels: Green Ice, Silver Press Proof, Yellow Flood, Purple Press Proof #/199, 75th Anniversary #/75
- Choice: Base Choice, Dragon, Red #/99, Blue #/49, Gold #/10, Black Gold #/8, Black 1/1
- Holo Laser: Green, Green/Yellow, Orange, Pink, Red/Gold, Teal, Base #/149, Purple #/99, Red #/99, Light Blue #/60, Blue #/49, Yellow #/25, Red/Blue #/15, Gold #/10, Black 1/1
4. 2021-22 Donruss Next Day Autograph Franz Wagner RC #FWG (eBay)
Wagner’s Next Day Autographs insert is also contained in 2021-22 Donruss Basketball. It’s proven to be another popular option if you’re looking at signed RCs.
They’re called Next Day Autos because the cards were originally mass-signed at a rookie photoshoot and then could be made available for release the following day.
They’ve been included in Donruss Basketball sets since 2016-17, and they’re some of the earliest pro cards you’ll be able to find.
3. 2021 Panini Flawless Franz Wagner Rookie Diamond Signatures RC #69 (eBay)
Panini Flawless is a high-end release, featuring a 10-card box which arrives in a briefcase tin.
From the Rookie Diamond Signatures subset, this Wagner RC features an on-card auto and a handful of rare parallels, such as the Gold version seen above. The base version is limited to 10 copies, so it can be especially tough to locate on the market.
As with every card to make the list, pristine graded copies are going to sell for a significant premium.
- Parallels: Gold #/5, Platinum 1/1
2. 2021-22 Crown Royale Rookie Silhouettes Franz Wagner RPA #111 (eBay)
2021-22 Panini Crown Royale Basketball is the home of die-cut hits, and contains one auto per box. The Rookie Silhouettes subset features a great Wagner RPA, with a base version limited to 199 copies.
If you’re on the market for high-end hits, there are a number of rare parallels limited to 25 or fewer. This rare RPA offers something a little different compared to the others on this list.
- Parallels: Prime #/25, FOTL #/12, FOTL Premium #/3, Super Prime 1/1
1. 2021-22 Contenders Franz Wagner RC #SC2 (eBay)
Our personal favourite when looking at Franz Wagner rookie cards, 2021-22 Contenders offers hard-signed options in a popular format.
The set follows a traditional Rookie Ticket design, and comes with a handful of themed parallels. There’s also a photo variation, which can be identified as they have a white “V” inside a black circle on the back of the card. We’ve circled an example below.
Expect to pay at least four figures to add one of the rarer copies to your personal collection.
- Ticket Parallels: Clear, Playoff #/99, The Finals #/49, Cracked Ice #/25, Championship 1/1
- Premium Edition Ticket Parallels: Base Premium Edition, Green Shimmer, Blue Shimmer FOTL #/20, Gold #/10, Red Shimmer FOTL #/5, Gold Shimmer FOTL 1/1, Gold Vinyl 1/1
Franz Wagner Rookie Cards: Buyers Guide
What does the market look like for Franz Wagner rookie cards? We’ve put together a brief buyers guide discussing our thoughts.
The Best Cheap Franz Wagner Rookie Cards
If you’re on the lookout for cheaper Franz Wagner rookie cards, the base 2021 Donruss release is fairly affordable. You should also be able to pick up low-tier autos for under $100, but we’d stick to numbered cards if possible due to the potential for higher resale value in the future.
The Best Franz Wagner Investment Rookie Card
We’d go for the 2021-22 Contenders Franz Wagner Rookie Ticket, even if it is currently one of the more expensive options overall. This is partly due to the popularity of the brand, as well as a timeless design and lots of rare parallels.
Franz Wagner Rookie Cards: Buying/Selling Advice
The Magic’s first-year forward has had a promising start to life in the NBA, and should be seen as an underrated option. As always, rookies are slightly riskier than legends like LeBron, although Wagner has already hit some impressive numbers.
His 79 games played were the most among any first-year player in 2021-22, and Wagner scored the most points (1,197), the fifth most rebounds (356), the sixth most assists (231), and tallied the fifth most steals (68) among all rookies.