Whether it’s football, soccer, or basketball, Panini’s Kaboom! insert set features some of the most desirable modern cards for collectors to chase. Typically released at a rate of one per case, they’re especially rare, and the majority are valuable.
Instantly recognizable thanks to a unique design, it’s proof that you don’t always need an auto or a serial number.
Here’s a roundup with 10 of the best KABOOM! insert cards to collect, in a range of different sports.
The Best KABOOM! Cards to Collect
A top player with the addition of an RC logo is what you’re likely to find on the most valuable Kaboom cards. Here are the products in which you have a chance of pulling Kabooms:
- 2013-14: Innovation
- 2014-15: Excalibur
- 2015-16: Excalibur
- 2016-17: Excalibur
- 2017-18: Panini Rewards Exclusive
- 2018-19: Crown Royale
- 2019-20: Crown Royale
- 2020-21: Crown Royale
- 2018-2020: Absolute
- 2017-18 Select
- 2018: Panini Rewards Exclusive
- 2019-20: Panini Prizm
- 2020-21: Panini Prizm
We’ve looked at recent sales data to bring you this list with 10 of the top KABOOM! cards to collect.
10. 2021-22 Panini Crown Royale KABOOM! Cade Cunningham RC #21 (eBay)
The first overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft has impressed massively, whether it be as a primary ball handler, scorer, or facilitator.
His Kaboom RC is found in the 2021-22 Panini Crown Royale collection. As with the majority of cards on this list, it’ll take at least four figures to obtain a copy.
9. 2020-21 Panini Crown Royale KABOOM! Anthony Edwards RC #21 (eBay)
Anthony Edwards is one of the biggest talents in the NBA right now, selected with the first overall pick by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the 2020 Draft. He made the NBA All-Rookie First Team (2021), and became the youngest player in NBA history with 10 three-pointers in a game in December 2021.
An Edwards Kaboom RC is also found in 2021-22 Panini Crown Royale, with an image of the player leaping up towards the rim.
8. 2018 Panini KABOOM! Giannis Antetokounmpo #GA (eBay)
Giannis Antetokounmpo won back-to-back NBA MVP Awards in 2019 and 2020, joining an esteemed list with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and LeBron James as the only players in NBA history to win the accolade twice before turning 26.
The ‘Greek Freak’ went on to become an NBA champion in 2021 after leading the Bucks to their first NBA championship since 1971, picking up the Finals MVP award in the same season.
The 2018 Panini Kaboom Rewards checklist features 50 stars taken from a handful of key sports, with Giannis being one of the NBA contingent.
7. 2020 Panini Absolute KABOOM! Joe Burrow RC #KJB2 (eBay)
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow is one of the most collectible players in all sports, and has been a fan favorite ever since breaking multiple college records enroute to the NFL.
He recorded 5,671 yards and 60 TDs to lead LSU to a national championship, while his passer rating of 202 for the season was also a record until it was surpassed by Mac Jones in 2020.
Kaboom inserts have been a staple of Panini Absolute since 2018. It’s hard to do better than this Burrow RC.
6. 2018 Panini KABOOM! Josh Allen RC #JA (eBay)
Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen is the subject of the next RC to make the list. He led the Bills to their first division title and playoff victory since 1995 en route to an AFC Championship Game appearance in 2020, and led the team to a consecutive division title the following year.
One of 50 players chosen for the 2018 Panini KABOOM! multi-sport collection, there are also debut parallels in Gold (#/10) and Green (1/1).
5. 2018-19 Panini Crown Royale KABOOM! Luka Doncic RC #23 (eBay)
After declaring himself eligible for the draft in 2018, Luka Doncic was selected unanimously to the NBA All-Rookie First Team and won Rookie of the Year for the 2018–19 season.
Already the Mavericks’ franchise leader in career triple-doubles, Doncic has made the All-NBA First Team three years in a row. He hasn’t won a championship yet, but led his team to the Western Conference Finals in 2022.
Found in 2018-19 Panini Crown Royale, this RC can easily reach the five-figure mark when graded.
4. 2020 Panini Absolute KABOOM! Justin Herbert RC #KJH2 (eBay)
If you’re looking at popular quarterback rookie cards from the last few years, Justin Herbert has to be part of the equation.
The 2020 Rookie of the Year now holds the record for the most passing yards (9,350) through the first two seasons of a career in NFL history, as well as the most completions (839) during the same period.
You’ll be able to find Gold (#/10) and Green (1/1) parallels with this rare Herbert RC.
3. 2021 Panini Absolute KABOOM! Justin Herbert RC #26 (eBay)
Sticking with Herbert, 2021 Panini Absolute contains another Kaboom! card which sells for big bucks. Once again, there are Gold (#/10) and Green (1/1) parallels available, with a copy of the former seen in the image above.
2. 2013-14 Panini Innovation KABOOM! LeBron James #18 (eBay)
LeBron James is a name that anyone with a passing interest in basketball is likely to recognize. A heavyweight within the modern card collecting hobby, even the biggest “King James” hater has to acknowledge that he’s a GOAT contender.
It’s only fair, as LeBron is consistently compared with Michael Jordan since winning four NBA championships, four NBA MVP awards, four NBA Finals MVP awards, three All-Star MVP awards, and two Olympic gold medals.
The set that started it all, 2013-14 Panini Innovation Basketball contains the first ever Kaboom cards produced by Panini. A PSA 10 version of the LeBron card recently sold for a flat $15,500.
1. 2019 Panini Absolute KABOOM! Patrick Mahomes #2 (eBay)
Patrick Mahomes already holds multiple records, and is the youngest quarterback in NFL history to be named Super Bowl MVP. He is also the youngest player to ever win a league MVP and a Super Bowl title.
His card is found in 2019 Panini Absolute. A BGS 10 copy of the Gold parallel recently sold for $31,988. There’s also a Green one-of-one, seen in the image above.
The Best KABOOM! Cards: Buyers Guide
What does the market look like for the best Kaboom cards? We’ve put together the following guide with our thoughts on the collection.
The Best Cheap KABOOM! Cards to Collect
Unless it’s an unfancied player, it’s going to be tough to locate cheap Kaboom cards. Almost everyone knows how valuable they are, and they attract multiple bids at auction. You should still be able to locate the most affordable options for less than $100 from time to time.
The Best KABOOM! Investment Card
It’ll depend on which sport you prefer, as well as the player in question. RCs are always going to be a good investment, although the majority of Kaboom cards will set you back by at least four figures. We think that any of the cards to make the list are likely to hold value long-term.
The Best KABOOM! Cards to Collect: Final Thoughts
Kaboom! cards are still relatively new in the grand scheme of things, but they’re undeniably one of the more popular collections from the modern era. It’s a truly unique design, capped by being one of the rarest inserts you’re likely to find in Panini sets. They stand out instantly, and prices have shown no sign of slowing down in recent months.
If you do manage to snag one of the case hits, we’d advise to send it off for grading straight away. However, it would probably be cheaper to buy a Kaboom card outright, given they’re almost impossible to pack.