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Hunting the Connor Bedard Rookie Card: What You Need To Know

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Even the most casual of sports card collectors knows about the Connor Bedard rookie card by now.

When the sports card industry made its comeback a few years back, the hockey card collectors remained somewhat of a niche group. When everyone was emptying the shelves of cards at their local Walmart and Target, the one box you could usually still purchase was a blaster of Upper Deck hockey cards.

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Fast forward to 2024 and hockey cards are the hottest release of the year.  What changed you might be wondering? Well, the Connor Bedard rookie card changed all that, once Bedard got drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks, an original six NHL team, which is the perfect location for an 18-year-old to take the league by storm. 

Bedard is proving to be the real deal in a league where No. 1 overall picks tend to be overhyped and fizzle out.

Since 2004, Bedard joins the likes of Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby, Connor McDavid, and Auston Matthews as the potential candidates as the next “Great One.” Where other top picks have failed, Bedard has succeeded in being a superstar right out of the gate and singlehandedly driving up the prices of hockey cards to levels never seen.

Young Guns History & the Connor Bedard Rookie Card

Typically, the most sought-after hockey rookie card is Upper Deck’s Young Guns. These were first released in the 1990-91 high series (remember Pavel Bure?) and have been collected ever since. A quick search of eBay will yield the following results of the most valuable Young Guns:

When you look at this list, you see Stanley Cup champions, Olympic gold medalists, league MVPs, league scoring leaders, the second-best all-time goal scorer, and future Hall-of-Famers.

Bedard has played less than 50 games in the NHL (43 points, 17G/26A) and his card is worth almost as much as the rest! On release day of Upper Deck Series 2 (March 6, 2024), it was going for over $1,000.

If you are interested in getting your hands on a Connor Bedard rookie card, here are some current options along with average eBay prices and odds of hitting that card:

2023-24 Upper Deck MVP Hobby Box $44.95 – View on eBay!

MVP is typically considered a low-end product, great for entry into collecting hockey cards. The MVP hobby box contains 20 packs of 8 cards each. You are guaranteed one rare hit per box.

MVPs’ popularity comes from it being the first release of the new product each year. This year’s product also marked the first Connor Bedard rookie card redemption for the 2023 NHL No. 1 draft pick SP redemption.

Odds are 1:1,250 packs or 1:12,500 packs for the gold parallel. 

2023-24 Upper Deck Series 1 Hobby Box $144.95 – View on eBay!

Series 1 is the first product of the year the contains the coveted YGs. Each box should include 12 packs of 12 cards each, with each pack containing 3 inserts. 

Series 1 has 50 YGs to collect, and along with Series 2, is probably the most collected hockey card product. Typically, YGs are mass produced and there is no way to know how many are out there, they are not numbered like many other sought-after cards are.

In most past years, YGs could be collected in the following versions: base, canvas, clear cut, and French.

For this year, Upper Deck offered several numbered versions (most likely in anticipation of cashing in on Bedard Mania) along with the previous mentioned versions. Numbered versions include Deluxe, Exclusive /100, High Gloss, Outburst Red and a 1/1 Outburst Gold.

Unfortunately, there was not a Bedard Young Guns in Series 1, but there was a Connor Bedard NHL Draft Pick Short Print. Odds for this card were not released and it sells on eBay for several hundred dollars. 

2023-24 Upper Deck Artifacts Hobby Box $149.95 – View on eBay!

Artifacts is typically considered a mid-level product for collectors. Each box should include 8 packs of 4 cards and include two hits per box. You will find a smaller set of veteran base cards and all the big rookies. There are several numbered cards, autographs and jersey cards in the collection. 

Artifacts was the first product of 2023-24 to contain a Connor Bedard autograph, albeit in the form of a redemption. The most favorable odds to obtain a Bedard autograph would be 1:1,500 packs and a jersey redemption about 1:269.  These redemptions are listed on eBay for upwards of $2,000.

2023-24 O-Pee-Chee (OPC) Hockey Hobby Box $169.95 – View on eBay!

OPC is another product that is considered low-end with a typical price tag less than $100. Each box contains 18 packs of 10 cards with multiple inserts included, usually several per pack.

This year Bedard’s inclusion made it extremely popular. His Marquee Rookie card was available in base, as well as several colored parallels, including a gold 1/1. You can expect to hit several rookies in every box, however, the rookie and all-star series is 100 cards deep, so a Connor Bedard rookie card is still a long shot.

2023-24 Upper Deck Series 2 Hobby Box $329.95 – View on eBay!

Series 2 is all about the players who did not get their Young Guns released in Series 1 and often contain the previous year’s top draft picks.

Series 2 follows the same format as Series 1, with 12 packs of 12 cards, and three inserts per pack.

In most years, Series 2 will run you about $140 on release date and will steadily drop based on the value of the YGs.

This year’s release is priced so high because the Connor Bedard Young Guns rookie card was finally here. Also, Dave & Adams Card World has put out a $1 million bounty for the Gold Outburst 1/1, so there is that, too.

There are other Connor Bedard rookie cards to collect in the Series 2 release as well, and they are all rather valuable. These cards include his Dazzler, UD Portrait, OPC Glossy and the 94-95 Die Cut.

In a hobby box, you can expect to hit six Young Guns (there are 50 total), and you will usually get one Outburst or Canvas YG. 

Retail Versions: Each of the products listed above has retail and blaster version available for less money. Upper Deck Series 2 specifically has blasters and tins.

Blaster prices are around $45 on eBay this year and you should expect 2 YGs per box.

Tins price around $100 on eBay and you should expect 3-4 YGs, though both blasters and tins have no guarantees. 

Connor Bedard Rookie Cards in Future Releases

Future products that will contain Connor Bedard rookie cards will be 2023-24 O-Pee-Chee Platinum ($299.95/Aug 2024).

Also, Upper Deck SP Authentic ($499.95/July 2024) is another high-end product known for its Future Watch Autos, probably the most collected rookie cards besides YGs. 

There will also be an Upper Deck Extend Series ($149.95/June) and it should include the Connor Bedard Canvas Young Guns.

If getting a Connor Bedard rookie card is on your list, my advice would be to wait. The price for boxes and individual cards is steep right now and the rest of the YG crop just does not justify a $300 price tag.  As more collectors open boxes and time goes on the prices are almost guaranteed to drop. 

Sales on eBay are already a few hundred dollars less today than they were just a few days ago for the Bedard YG, as the supply is catching up with demand. 

I would also assume that the price of a hobby box will drop once someone finds that 1/1 gold Outburst, though a $1 million bounty is quite tempting if you want to gamble.

My strategy, I am going to wait until around July or August to see how Connor Bedard rookie card prices look when we all get focused on football and baseball releases.

Happy Bedard hunting to those of you who just cannot wait! I truly hope you get one and, as always, have a #HappyHobby!

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