The Best Sports Illustrated for Kids Cards To Watch For

Ryan Barone
(@ballcardgenius, Card Expert) is a lifelong member of the hobby. He has been quoted in PSA Magazine, and his content has regularly been mentioned in “Quick Rips” (the Topps RIPPED Newsletter) and across other hobby publications. hello@ballcardgenius.com; Last Time Ago LLC dba Ballcard Genius.

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Yes, Sports Illustrated for Kids, the magazine we all probably subscribed to when we were younger, only to have copies trashed long ago right along with many of your favorite childhood collections.

If you don’t know, and you’re here to learn. You’ve heard of Sports Illustrated Magazine, right? Well, there is a version of Sports Illustrated for Kids, as it is aptly named.

But the reason why certain issues of the magazine are selling for a ton of money right now is because each magazine has a sheet of 9 sports cards that represent athletes of the moment. It just so happens that back in 1996, a Tiger Woods SI for Kids rookie card was featured, and in 1999 there was a Serena Williams card, and so on.


Did you know this SI for Kids with the Victor Wembanyama rookie card is now selling for around $200??#greenscreen #ConSantanderConecto

♬ Aesthetic – Tollan Kim

In fact, here are the most valuable Sports Illustrated for Kids cards sold over the last 365 days (average selling price, according to Market Movers):

1. 1996 Tiger Woods PSA 10 $36.5K
2. 1999 Serena Williams PSA 10 $14.7K
3. 1992 Mia Ham PSA 10 $13.8K
4. 2023 Victor Wembanyama PSA 9 $5,22K
5. 2013 Katie Ledecky PSA 10 $2.25K
6. 1989 Michael Jordan PSA 9 $2.01K
7. 2009 Lewis Hamilton PSA 9 $1.8K
8. 2019 Jon Rahm BGS 9.5 $1.8K
9. 2015 Brooks Koepka PSA 9 $1.55K
10. 2008 Usain Bolt PSA 10 $1.53K

Thus, the copies of the magazines holding key “rookie” cards are selling well. The sheets of those cards detached from the magazine are also selling well. The perforated cards ripped from their sheets are selling well. And, as you might imagine, high-grade copies of those cards are selling well.

More so, think about those athletes who don’t have regularly-issued cards because of the sport they play or are a part of—Simone Biles, Naomi Osaka, and more. Cards of such athletes are few and far between.

So, the question is now, which issues should you be hunting for in your – if you’re lucky – stacks of magazines your parents never threw away?

(But also, for the forward thinkers, how can you try and catch the next wave of superstar cards? SI for Kids magazine subscriptions are only $20 for 6 issues per year—you can grab them through Amazon.)

Sports Illustrated for Kids Cards

Here is a list of the different Sports Illustrated for Kids magazines to watch out for and to search through.

January 1989

Cover: Michael Jordan
Headline: Jump!
Card to Chase: Michael Jordan
9-Card Sheet:

  • Katarina Witt
  • Jose Canseco
  • Mark Jackson
  • Joe Nieuwendyk
  • Alberto Tomba
  • Dante Muse
  • Jackie Joyner-Kersee
  • Herschel Walker
  • Michael Jordan

Latest eBay Sales

June 1989

Cover: Janet Evans
Headline: Splash
Card to Chase: Andre Agassi
9-Card Sheet:

  • Andre Agassi
  • Chris Sabo
  • Rickey Henderson
  • Evelyn Ashford
  • Curtis Strange
  • Connie Young
  • Lyn St. James
  • Roger Kingdom
  • Andre Dawson

Latest eBay Sales

May 1990

Cover: Ed & Tony George
Headline: The Right Stuff
Card to Chase: Tony Hawk
9-Card Sheet:

  • Tony Hawk
  • Merlene Ottey
  • Mark McGwire
  • Reggie Miller
  • Rex Chapman
  • Boris Becker
  • Wendy Williams
  • Sheryl Johnson
  • Dwight Gooden

Latest eBay Sales

August 1992

Cover: Kirby Puckett
Headline: Kirby!
Card to Chase: Mia Hamm
9-Card Sheet:

  • Mia Hamm
  • Richard Petty
  • Anita Nall
  • Matt Williams
  • Deion Sanders
  • Bobby Bonilla
  • Dawn Staley
  • Chuck Finley
  • Fred Couples

Latest eBay Sales

December 1996

Cover: Larry Johnson
Headline: LJ Comes to Play
Card to Chase: Tiger Woods
9-Card Sheet:

  • Tiger Woods
  • Lisa Leslie
  • Jerry Stackhouse
  • Curtis Martin
  • Michael Finley
  • Martina Hingis
  • Ed Jovanovksi
  • Chen Lu
  • Doug Flutie

Current eBay Sales

February 1997

Cover: Jackie Robinson
Headline: An American Hero
Card to Chase: Kobe Bryant
4-Card Sheet:

  • Kobe Bryant
  • Allen Iverson
  • Marcus Camby
  • Kerry Kittles

(There is also a 9-card sheet, but Kobe featured on a separate NBA rookies 4-card sheet as listed above.)

Latest eBay Sales

July 1999

Cover: Sammy Sosa
Headline: Smash Hit
Card to Chase: Serena Williams
9-Card Sheet:

  • Serena Williams
  • Allen Iverson
  • Randy Moss
  • Rickey Henderson
  • Mo Vaughn
  • Doug Swingley
  • Vinny Castilla
  • Peter Nowak
  • Jennifer Gillom

Latest eBay Sales

May 2003

Cover: Yao Ming
Headline: It’s Good to Be Yao
Card to Chase: LeBron James
9-Card Sheet:

  • LeBron James
  • Michelle Kwan
  • Brad Johnson
  • Jaromir Jagr
  • Tim Duncan
  • Alfonso Soriano
  • Diana Turasi
  • Derek Lowe
  • Clinton Portis

Latest eBay Sales

September 2008

Cover: Eli Manning
Headline: 2008 NFL Preview
Card to Chase: Usain Bolt
9-Card Sheet:

  • Usain Bolt
  • Chris Bosh
  • Angela Tincher
  • Knowshon Moreno
  • Josh Hamilton
  • Rafael Nadal
  • Hannah Nielsen
  • Marques Colston
  • Edison Volquez

Latest eBay Sales

October 2008

Cover: Terrell Owens
Headline: Showdown
Card to Chase: Steph Curry
9-Card Sheet:

  • Steph Curry
  • Laura Bennett
  • Tim Lincecum
  • Clinton Portis
  • Mario Williams
  • Paul Pierce
  • Johan Franzen
  • Jill Kintner
  • Tommy Mendonca

Latest eBay Sales

April 2009

Cover: Cole Hamels
Headline: Ready, Aim, Baseball
Card to Chase: Lewis Hamilton
9-Card Sheet:

  • Lewis Hamilton
  • Shelly-Ann Fraser
  • Nate Robinson
  • Cliff Lee
  • Tim Thomas
  • James Harrison
  • Kevin Durant
  • Adrian Gonzalez
  • Megan Hodge

Latest eBay Sales

June 2015

Cover: USWNT Soccer
Headline: The Avengers
Card to Chase: Jordan Spieth
9-Card Sheet:

  • Jordan Spieth
  • Jake Hoyle
  • JJ Watt
  • Simona Halep
  • Kytra Hunter
  • Stephen Curry
  • Zane McIntyre
  • Jacob DeGrom
  • Tyus Jones

Latest eBay Sales

November 2018

Cover: Larry Fitzgerald
Headline: The Photography Issue
Card to Chase: Naomi Osaka
9-Card Sheet:

  • Naomi Osaka
  • Kirk Cousins
  • Jayson Tatum
  • Victor Hedman
  • Josef Martinez
  • Simone Biles
  • Justin Turner
  • Carsen Edwards
  • Jonathan Taylor

Latest eBay Sales

January 2023

Cover: Griddy
Headline: The Photography Issue
Card to Chase: Victor Wembanyama
9-Card Sheet:

  • Alyssa Thompson
  • Victor Wembanyama
  • Felicia Knox
  • Chelsea Gray
  • Yordan Alvarez
  • Ahmad Gardner
  • Hendon Hooker
  • Kellyn Acosta
  • Desmond Bame

Latest eBay Sales

Next Steps

So, if after all of this, you were lucky enough to find a prized magazine, what do you do next? From extracting the cards to keeping the magazine whole, you have a number of options.

And while you can always just keep the magazine as a cool and valuable keepsake, here are some things to consider if you wanted to sell. I’ll be using the “Tiger Woods” December 1996 issue as the example.

1. Sell the Magazine in its Current Condition

If you wanted to sell the magazine as you found it, the lowest-priced copy on eBay right now is listed for $1,200. So, if you went this route and wanted to sell the magazine relatively quickly, you’d probably have to list it lower than $1,200.

That said, this is only one side of data, and to get a better idea of what the magazine might be worth, you’d want to check eBay sold data, in which case here the most recent sales says there was a $510 sale in January in 2023, along with a $425 sale in December 2022 and a $349.99 in November 2022.

2. Sell the Card Sheet

Alternatively, there is the option to remove the sheet in its entriety and then sell. Personally, I’m not sure I understand this option a whole lot because you’re taking the risk to remove the sheet, but then not go the extra step to remove the card.

It also looks like the sheet on its own is perceived to be of lesser value, with the most recent sale being for $399 in December 2022. Earlier in the month there was also a $499.99 sale along with one for $213.50.

3. Sell the Single Card (Raw)

Next, you have the option of selling the single card on its own. Of course, we are moving into risky territory, because removing the card from the perforated sheet introduces the possibility that you rip the card and damage its condition, and value.

Alos, if you go this route, past sales tell us to not cut the card out of the sheet with scissors, as you’ll see some of the lower recent sales are cards with clean (trimmed) edges:

On the other hand, if you look at recent sales of cards with perforated edges, you’ll see recent sales around $250-$300.

4. Submit the Card for Grading (and then Sell)

Last, the most profitable option could be extracting the card from the sheet and then submitting for grading. On the plus side, a card graded as a PSA 7 or better could provide a nice return, as the last PSA 7 sold for $564. And then as you might expect, a card graded even higher would bring in more, with a PSA 8 recently selling for $925.

Given that, PSA 9 is where things get really interesting, with the most recent sale fetching $2,500 (January 2023) and the one before that $2,700 (December 2022).

How about a PSA 10? I don’t see a current sale, unfortunately. There is one currently for sale at $55,000, but again, that card is simply listed for sale and that number doesn’t mean much until it becomes a sold price. Either way, a PSA 10 would certainly be a prized possession.

On the other end of the spectrum, grading doesn’t guarantee a nice return, as a PSA 4 recently sold for $280 (November 2022), a PSA 2 for $220 (January 2023), and a PSA 1 $171.50 (December 2022).

How to Remove the Card

If you decide to remove the single card from the sheet, here are some things to consider. Please note I’ve never tried to do remove a card from a sheet, nor have I submitted an SI for Kids card for grading. These are sourced tips I’ve found from my own personal research.

First, and as mentioned above, if you’re hoping for the best grade, don’t use scissors to cut the card out of the sheet. It’s hard to believe, but the perforated edges should be present and are preferred when compared to smooth, trimmed edges.

So, just like you’d approach any perforated material, you’ll probably want to fold along the performated edges to make for as easy as a tear (where it’s supposed to tear) as possible.

As for examples of what could cause a good or bad grade, this recent thread on the Blowout forums has a number of different cases and circumstances. For instance, one thing that could result in a lower grade is the presence of the cards surrounding the submitted card. Meaning, the Tiger Woods (in the middle of the sheet) is surrounded by yellow cards, and the presence of yellow (parts of the other cards) could lead to a lower grade.

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