15 Most Valuable 1992 Fleer Basketball Cards

Most Valuable 1992 Fleer Basketball Cards

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When they were first released, collectors scrambled to get their hands on packs of 1992 Fleer basketball cards because the NBA hype could not have been any hotter.

Michael Jordan and the Bulls were coming off of back-to-back NBA championships, the USA Men's basketball team had won a gold medal in Barcelona, and Larry Bird and Magic Johnson were retiring.

Not to mention, one of the most highly anticipated rookies in NBA history was about to make his rookie debut for the Orlando Magic...

After a standout career at LSU, hobbyists were ecstatic about the possibility of pulling a Shaq rookie card from packs of 1992 Fleer that year.

And, there were plenty more stars and future Hall of Famers within the 444-card checklist that had hobbyists excited as well.

And in this guide, I'll run through the 15 most valuable in the set.

Let's jump right in!

Let's be clear: most of the cards from this set do not have any value these days.

Like the 1992 Hoops, SkyBox, Topps and Upper Deck sets, there were just so many of these cards printed.

So, for the cards on this list to be worth much, they'll have to be graded by PSA to be in perfect, gem mint condition.

That means the card needs to be flawless.

Now that we got that out of the way, let's take a look at the list:

1992 Fleer #32 Michael Jordan

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $350

Coming fresh off a 1992 Olympic gold medal and two straight NBA championships, Michael Jordan had already established himself as the best basketball player in the world.

The three-time MVP posted 32.6 points (earning his 7th straight scoring title,) 6.7 rebounds, 5.5 assists, and a notable league-high 2.8 steals to demonstrate his incredible skill on both sides of the ball.

In the playoffs, the Bulls swept the Atlanta Hawks 3-0 and then steamrolled through the Cleveland Cavaliers 4-0 in the Conference Semifinals.

However, the Conference Finals would be a much more arduous task, as the Bulls found themselves down 0-2 in the series against Patrick Ewing and the hard-nosed New York Knicks.

Jordan and the Bulls regrouped to win the next four games to win the series in six games to earn an NBA Finals showdown against Charles Barkley and the Phoenix Suns.

With each of the six games being decided by ten points or less, the Bulls would three-peat as champs in one of the closest Finals in league history.

Jordan also became the first player in NBA history to three-peat as Finals MVP, punctuating his first stint in the league with a historical exclamation point.

1992 Fleer #32 Michael Jordan Basketball Card

1992 Fleer #401 Shaq Rookie Card

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $300

Shaquille O'Neal entered the 1992 NBA season as the most hyped rookie since Michael Jordan began setting the basketball world ablaze in 1984.

There was no learning curve for the big man as he became the first player in league history to win Player of the Week honors after his first week as a professional.

From that point on, Shaq dominated down low all year, averaging 23.4 points per game on 56% shooting.

He also averaged a career-high 13.9 rebounds and 3.5 blocks per game, as few could compete with him in the paint.

The Orlando Magic's decision to take Shaq with the first pick of the 1992 NBA Draft had paid incredible dividends as the team won 20 more games than the year before to finish at 41-41.

Unfortunately, injuries to crucial teammates Dennis Scott and Brian Williams weighed on the Magic and they ultimately missed the playoffs after losing a tie-breaker to the Indiana Pacers.

To no one's surprise, Shaq took home 1992-93 Rookie of the Year honors and left fans wanting to see more of the generational talent.

1992 Fleer #401 Shaq Rookie Card

1992 Fleer #273 Michael Jordan

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $200

The Slam Dunk subset spanned cards 265-300 in the set and featured some of the best dunkers in the league, including names like Clyde Drexler, Dee Brown, Larry Nance, Dominique Wilkins, and of course, Michael Jordan.

On the front of the card, Jordan is shown dunking over the leader of the arch-rival New York Knicks, Patrick Ewing, as John Starks watches the play unfold in the background.

The reverse of the card mentions Jordan's incredible dunk from the foul line that won him the 1987 NBA Slam Dunk Championship and his repeat of the title in 1988.

As you'll notice on this list and others like it from other basketball card sets of the 1990s, Jordan would appear in multiple subsets in a given set as companies looked to capitalize on his star power.

1992 Fleer #273 Michael Jordan Basketball Card (Slam Dunk)
1992 Fleer #273 Michael Jordan Slam Dunk Basketball Card Reverse Side

1992 Fleer #178 Charles Barkley

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $150

A month or so before his iconic run as the leading scorer for the 1992 Dream Team that secured gold at the Barcelona Olympics, Charles Barkley's NBA career took a sharp left turn out West.

Never one to shy away from controversy or speaking his mind, the future Hall-of-Fame forward publicly demanded a trade away from the Philadelphia 76ers after eight years with the franchise.

With the noise getting louder and the situation at an impasse, 76ers management agreed and shipped Barkley to the Phoenix Suns for Jeff Hornacek, Andrew Lang, and Tim Perry.

It was a lopsided deal that instantly pushed Phoenix from also-rans to title contenders.

Despite being traded from Philadelphia to Phoenix, Fleer still produced this Barkley card featuring him playing for the Sixers.

But, you'll notice a small black circle on the lower-right side of the card that reads "Post Season Trade" notifying collectors of the deal.

During his eight seasons with the Sixers, Barkley averaged 23.3 points and 11.6 rebounds per game as he developed a reputation as a controversial player but a top power forward nonetheless.

1992 Fleer #178 Charles Barkley Basketball Card

1992 Fleer #238 Michael Jordan

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $150

To commemorate some of the NBA's top players in several statistical categories for the 1991-92 season, Fleer released an eight-card "League Leaders" subset that spanned cards #238-245.

John Stockton appeared as the league leader in assists and steals, Dennis Rodman's card showed him as the top rebounder, and David Robinson was honored as the top shot-blocker.

And, coming off his sixth-straight season as the NBA's scoring leader with  30.1 points per game, Fleer included this card with Jordan shooting over the outstretched arm of a Philadelphia Sixers defender.

The write-up on the reverse side is fantastic and much longer than what you'd typically find on these kinds of cards of the era.

Fleer humorously described Jordan as "the man who fills more nets than a five-armed fisherman," and I must say, that's as good of a way to describe Michael Jordan as any I've ever read.

Jordan would ultimately finish the 1992-93 season as the league's top scorer with 32.6 points per game to tie Wilt Chamberlain's record of seven-straight scoring titles.

1992 Fleer #238 Michael Jordan Basketball Card (League Leaders)
1992 Fleer #238 Michael Jordan League Leader Basketball Card Reverse Side

1992 Fleer #246 Michael Jordan

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $150

The Award Winner subset included only four cards in the checklist from #246-249, but collectors enjoyed every one of them.

Larry Johnson's card celebrated his Rookie of the Year achievement, David Robinson's showed him as the Defensive Player of the Year, and Detlef Schrempf's card recognized him as the Sixth Man of the Year.

At card #246, Jordan is pictured resting with his hands on his knees on the front of the card while the reverse commemorates his third NBA MVP award.

After reading through the write-up on the reverse, you are reminded of just how great he was on both offense and defense.

During his incredible Hall of Fame career, Jordan would win five NBA MVPs and six NBA Finals MVPs.

1992 Fleer #246 Michael Jordan Basketball Card (NBA Award Winner)
1992 Fleer #246 Michael Jordan NBA Award Winner Basketball Card Reverse Side

1992 Fleer #411 Charles Barkely

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $150

Entering his ninth season in the NBA, the "Round Mound of Rebound" looked to garner much more NBA playoff success with the Phoenix Suns than with the Philadelphia 76ers.

And after helping lead the USA Men's basketball team to a gold medal in the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Barkley intended to keep that winning momentum going.

The fresh start in Phoenix was a success for Barkley as he averaged 25.6 points, 12.2 rebounds, and 5.1 assists on a very successful Suns team that finished 62-20, the best record in the NBA that season.

Barkley received an All-NBA First-Team selection and, more importantly, the league MVP.

The playoffs started rockier than expected, as the Suns narrowly escaped the First Round with a 3-2 series win over the 8th-seeded Lakers.

David Robinson's Spurs put up a good fight in the Semifinals, taking the Suns to six games, while Shawn Kemp and the Seattle Supersonics were even tougher, forcing seven games in the Western Conference Finals.

In Game 7, Barkley proved why he deserved MVP honors, putting up a 44-point, 24 rebound performance in the victory.

He would have a strong showing in the Finals but ultimately fell short to Michael Jordan and the Bulls in six games.

1992 Fleer #411 Charles Barkley Basketball Card

1992 Fleer #298 Shaq

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $125

When Fleer included Shaquille O'Neal in their Slam Dunk subset, everyone knew he was an incredible dunker after watching him in college at LSU.

But, nobody could have anticipated how much destruction his dunks would cause during his rookie season in the NBA.

People had seen broken backboards before, but they never saw what Shaq was about to do during a regular-season game on April 23, 1993, against the New Jersey Nets.

One one particular play, O'Neal got the ball in the paint, made one dribble and threw down a thunderous dunk.

And in the process, he brought the entire goal down with him.

As Shaq walked off the court, a mangled goal lay on the ground with the shot clock dangling above it.

Crews had to bring out an entirely new basketball goal before play finally resumed.

From then on, the NBA increased its standards for the sturdiness of all basketball goals used in the league.

1992 Fleer #298 Shaq Rookie Card (Slam Dunk)
1992 Fleer #298 Shaquille O'Neal Slam Dunk Basketball Card Reverse Side

1992 Fleer #36 Scottie Pippen

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $100

While Scottie Pippen’s statistical output dipped in the 1992-93 NBA season, the Chicago Bulls’ steady small forward saw his popularity skyrocket.

Thanks to his cool demeanor, successful stint on the 1992 Dream Team, and two-way heroics for the Bulls, Pippen earned respect and adoration from his peers and NBA fans everywhere.

During the 1992-93 NBA season, Pippen averaged 18.6 points (on 47.3% shooting), 7.7 rebounds, 6.3 assists, 2.1 steals, and 0.9 blocks in 38.6 minutes per game.

He was the second-leading vote-getter in the NBA All-Star Game balloting, trailing only his teammate, Michael Jordan.

And thanks to his length and ability to disrupt opposing scorers, both big and small, the All-NBA Third Team selection also earned a spot on the NBA’s All-Defensive First Team for the second-straight season.

The Bulls leaned on Pippen during the playoffs to provide stability and clutch shooting while extending his overall workload.

In 41.5 minutes per game for the eventual back-to-back-to-back NBA champions, Pippen did all the big things and little things with equal efficacy

1992 Fleer #36 Scottie Pippen Basketball Card

1992 Fleer #11 Larry Bird

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $75

Shortly after helping the USA Men's team win gold in Barcelona during the 1992 Summer Olympics, Larry Bird decided to bring his NBA career to an official close when he announced his retirement on August 18, 1992.

In thirteen incredible seasons for the Boston Celtics, Larry Bird earned a reputation as one of the league's best and toughest competitors as he would do anything to win.

With career averages of 24.3 points, ten rebounds and 6.3 assists per game, Bird left a legacy as one of the best all-around players in NBA history.

He never possessed overwhelming speed or athletic ability, but his penchant for making the right plays at the right time set both himself and his teammates up for incredible success.

From the time he won the 1979-80 NBA Rookie of the Year Award, the Boston Celtics relied on his leadership throughout the 1980s and into the early 1990s.

Upon his retirement, Bird had won three MVPs, two NBA Finals MVPs, and three NBA championships while earning twelve All-Star selections, three All-Defensive selections and ten All-NBA selections.

1992 Fleer #11 Larry Bird Basketball Card

1992 Fleer #311 Alonzo Mourning

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $75

If it weren’t for Shaq’s otherworldly rookie season in Orlando, Alonzo Mourning’s debut campaign with the Charlotte Hornets would probably get more love from fans and historians.

Selected second overall in the 1992 NBA Draft between Shaq and Christian Laettner, Mourning breathed life into an expansion franchise that finished dead-last in its division in its first four seasons.

With Mourning patrolling the paint, opposing scorers struggled to drive to the hoop consistently.

By the team’s 49th game, the 22-year-old big man eclipsed the Hornets’ record for total blocked shots in a season.

Mourning finished the 1992-93 NBA regular season with averages of 21.0 points (on 51.1% shooting), 10.3 rebounds, and 3.5 blocks in 33.9 minutes per game.

The runner-up to Shaq in the NBA’s Rookie of the Year voting, Mourning joined the brand-new Orlando center as the only rookies since David Robinson (1989-90) to average at least 20 points and 10 rebounds per contest in their debut seasons.

Later, Mourning capped off the Hornets’ first playoff series win by hitting a 20-foot dagger with .4 seconds left in Game 4 of the NBA Eastern Quarterfinals against the Boston Celtics.

With the 3-1 series triumph, Charlotte made the leap from expansion city to basketball relevancy in a blink.

1992 Fleer #311 Alonzo Mourning Rookie Card

1992 Fleer #84 Hakeem Olajuwon

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $65

After clearing up a contentious contract situation that clouded his underwhelming 1991-92 season, legendary Houston Rockets center Hakeem Olajuwon bounced back with a vengeance in 1992-93.

With new coach Rudy Tomjanovich spotlighting Olajuwon’s effort as an example for the rest of the team to follow, the Rockets improved from 42-40 the previous year to 55-27 in 1992-93.

The eight-year veteran averaged 26.1 points (on 52.9% shooting), 13.0 rebounds, 3.5 assists, and a league-best 4.2 blocks in 39.5 minutes per game.

After falling back in the ranks in 1991-92, Olajuwon reclaimed his rightful spot on both the All-NBA First and the All-Defensive First Team.

He also finished as a runner-up to Charles Barkley for the NBA MVP Award and earned his first nod as the NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year.

In Houston’s first-round playoff series against the L.A. Clippers, Olajuwon paced each of the five games in points scored and rebounds while averaging an insane 5.8 blocks per game.

Olajuwon was brilliant for the vast majority of the following series against the Seattle SuperSonics, but it was to no avail as Seattle ousted Houston in a classic Game 7.

1992 Fleer #84 Hakeem Olajuwon Basketball Card

1992 Fleer #207 David Robinson

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $60

After his Dream Team experience in Barcelona, San Antonio Spurs center David Robinson settled back into his role as his team’s unflappable Ironman.

The Admiral appeared in all 82 regular-season games for the Spurs in 1992-93, logging a then franchise-record 3,211 minutes.

He made every minute count, too, averaging 23.4 points, 11.7 rebounds, 3.22 blocks, and 1.55 steals for a San Antonio team that earned a postseason berth with a 49-33 record.

A two-way standout who always let his performance do the talking, Robinson earned All-Defensive Second Team and All-NBA Third Team honors following the regular season.

While the Spurs’ season ended with a six-game loss to the eventual Western Conference champion Phoenix Suns in the Semifinals, Robinson was his usual brilliant self throughout the postseason, averaging 23.1 points and 12.6 rebounds.

An open-court artist with a penchant for turning all-world defense into transition dunks on the other end, Robinson would not win a title in San Antonio for another six years.

But, his steadying presence throughout his time with the team helped instill a winning culture for the Spurs that lasts to this very day.

1992 Fleer #207 David Robinson Basketball Card

1992 Fleer #379 Christian Laettner

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $50

When the Minnesota Timberwolves selected two-time NCAA champion Christian Laettner out of Duke University with the third pick of the 1992 NBA Draft, many didn't know what to expect.

Laettner had enjoyed incredible success in college but also developed a reputation for being an unlikeable player.

That made his inclusion on the 1992 Olympic Dream Team an even bigger question mark as no one knew how he would fit in with such an esteemed group of legends.

Not to mention, many suggested that fellow rising rookie Shaquille O'Neal should have taken his spot.

Despite all the perceived uncertainty about his transition to the NBA, Laettner's rookie season was a statistical success as he averaged 18.2 points and 8.7 rebounds.

Yet, his average of 3.4 turnovers a game and his famous bad attitude with his teammates detracted public opinion of Laettner's rookie season.

Laettner, by all accounts, had an above-average rookie season and career but never really matched the expectations fans set for him after his days at Duke.

1992 Fleer #379 Christian Laettner Rookie Card

1992 Fleer #66 Dennis Rodman

Estimated PSA 10 Value: $40

After his second All-Star appearance in 1992-92, Dennis Rodman followed up by averaging 7.5 points and a league-high 18.3 rebounds per game, the second-highest mark of his career.

Rodman and other star players Isiah Thomas and Joe Dumars were looking to carry on a winning legacy for the Detroit Pistons with their tenacious defense as a primary weapon.

Despite Rodman and Dumars making First-Team All-Defensive while Isiah made the All-Star Game, the team fell short of their goal of postseason success.

The Pistons ended the season with a 40-42 record and failed to make the playoffs for the first time in ten years.

Unfortunately, a sense of loneliness following the end of beloved coach Chuck Daly's tenure, mixed with a deteriorating relationship with his teammates, contributed to Roman's mental health plummeting.

Thankfully, Rodman turned things around, and a new change of scenery with the San Antonio Spurs the following season seemed to help Rodman grow mentally and as a teammate.

Later in the decade, Rodman would win multiple championships with Jordan and Pippen and become enshrined in the Hall of Fame after retirement.

1992 Fleer #66 Dennis Rodman Basketball Card

1992 Fleer Basketball Cards In Review

So there you have it: the fifteen most valuable 1992 Fleer basketball cards.

While their values in today's market may not be as high as those within the 1992 Upper Deck set, there are still several cards that can be worth a respectable amount in PSA 10 holders.

Though Shaq's rookie card sits at the top of the list in the Upper Deck set, it's also interesting to note that Michael Jordan's base card is the more expensive one in this set.

And, that may have as much to do with Jordan's popularity as it does collectors who want an entire run of Jordan cards in PSA 10 condition pushing up the price.

Unopened Box of 1992 Fleer Basketball Cards

Overall, this set is about what you'd expect for an early 1990s basketball card set, though it's not as flashy and over-the-top in terms of flashiness and crazy inserts.

If anything, this set should bring back plenty of great memories for anyone ripping through these packs back then.

Ross Uitts
 

Ross is the founder of Old Sports Cards and has been collecting sports cards for over 30 years. He also loves to write about the hobby and has written for Beckett, Topps, SABR and of course, this website. Need help buying or selling cards or have a general question about the hobby? Contact him at [email protected]

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