‘The Last Dance’ Michael Jordan documentary refuels passion for local trading card collector


RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Over the past ten years the trading card industry has been on fire. But at no time has it ever been hotter than it is now.

“March and April were hands down their biggest months of the year in terms of sales,” said card collector Jimmy Mahan.

The COVID-19 pandemic and the Michael Jordan documentary the “Last Dance” have been a big part of that surge.

People have more time on their hands now and many have re-lit their passion for card collecting. The lucky ones are getting a huge surprise thanks to the attention being paid to Michael Jordan.

“The iconic Jordan Fleer rookie card that has gone from a hundred dollar card to a thousand dollar card to a two thousand dollar card and literally in the last month is a ten thousand dollar card,” said Mahan.

Vintage and modern trading cards have been twice as lucrative as the stock market over the past decade.

“It’s like getting a lottery ticket,” explained Mahan. “But it’s a lottery ticket they have a relationship with because they grew up watching that person play.”

Like Michael Jordan.

“This documentary has fueled a get off the couch or stay on the couch and get online and go find what you can if you have that income to do it,” Mahan said.

And even if you don’t have the income, just the thrill alone of finding that special card can be incredibly satisfying. Having that feeling along with a family member is priceless.

“It’s a familial thing even now more so than when I was younger,” said Mahan. “My dad didn’t collect and I loved it. But I see a lot of father-son or mother-daughter or father-daughter collectors.”

Making the card collecting business one of the few industries that seem to be bullet-proof in these uncertain times.

“The people who have already been in here doing this for the past decade and loving it,” explained Mahan. “They’re not going anywhere. Well, now you’ve added a whole new fan base because of the pandemic into this industry.”

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