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1996-97 Bowman's Best Basketball Cards

1996-97 Bowman’s Best Basketball Cards

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$664.95
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While it was not the only chromium basketball product in 1996-97, the loud design and Atomic Refractors help distinguish 1996-97 Bowman's Best Basketball. Like all products from the season, the deep rookie class led by Kobe Bryant adds considerable interest and value.

The full base set for 96-97 Bowman's Best includes 125 total cards, but it can be broken down into three different subsets. The first 80 cards make up the traditional base set. The can be easily identified based on the gold background. Numbered separately with an "R" prefix, 25 rookie players are highlighted next. While the design is the same, the gold background and silver highlight is flipped so that the primary color is silver. Key rookies include Kobe Bryant, Allen Iverson, Steve Nash and Ray Allen. Finally, the Retro subset adds 20 more cards. Numbered with a "TB" prefix, the cards showcase a black-and-white image.

1996-97 Bowmans Best Basketball Base Kobe Bryant RC1996-97 Bowman's Best Kobe Bryant RC #R23 refractor1996-97 Bowmans Best Basketball Atomic Refractor Kobe Bryant RC

The key to 1996-97 Bowman's Best Basketball for most collectors is the Refractor parallels. All base cards and inserts feature both a base Refractor and Atomic Refractor. The Atomic Refractors are particularly eye-catching thanks to their unique design. While they first made their debut in the baseball edition of the product, these are the earliest Atomic Refractors for NBA collectors.

Dropping a few per box, several inserts are also available in the bold set. Best Cuts and Best Picks are very similar and both feature a die-cut design and facsimile signature. Honor Roll pairs two players on the same card. Along with Honor Roll, the three largely follow along with the base design. The sole standout in the release is the Best Shots insert. The cards feature an acetate stock and seem largely disconnected from the brand.

Yielding 24 packs of six 6 cards, sealed 1996-97 Bowman's Best Basketball boxes have become tougher to track down over the years. Prices hover in the $250-300 range.

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Checklist

1996-97 Bowman's Best Basketball Set Checklist

Base Set Checklist

PARALLEL CARDS: Refractors - 1:12 packs, Atomic Refractors - 1:24 packs
1996-97 Bowmans Best Basketball Base Kobe Bryant RC1996-97 Bowmans Best Basketball Retro Allen Iverson

Base
1 Scottie Pippen - Chicago Bulls
2 Glen Rice - Charlotte Hornets
3 Bryant Stith - Denver Nuggets
4 Dino Radja - Boston Celtics
5 Horace Grant - Orlando Magic
6 Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf - Sacramento Kings
7 Mookie Blaylock - Atlanta Hawks
8 Clifford Robinson - Portland Trail Blazers
9 Vin Baker - Milwaukee Bucks
10 Grant Hill - Detroit Pistons
11 Terrell Brandon - Cleveland Cavaliers
12 P.J. Brown - Miami Heat
13 Kendall Gill - New Jersey Nets
14 Brent Barry - Los Angeles Clippers
15 Hakeem Olajuwon - Houston Rockets
16 Allan Houston - New York Knicks
17 Elden Campbell - Los Angeles Lakers
18 Latrell Sprewell - Golden State Warriors
19 Jerry Stackhouse - Philadelphia 76ers
20 Robert Horry - Los Angeles Lakers
21 Mitch Richmond - Sacramento Kings
22 Gary Payton - Seattle SuperSonics
23 Rik Smits - Indiana Pacers
24 Jim Jackson - Dallas Mavericks
25 Damon Stoudamire - Toronto Raptors
26 Bobby Phills - Cleveland Cavaliers
27 Chris Webber - Washington Bullets
28 Shawn Bradley - New Jersey Nets
29 Arvydas Sabonis - Portland Trail Blazers
30 John Stockton - Utah Jazz
31 Anfernee Hardaway - Orlando Magic
32 Christian Laettner - Atlanta Hawks
33 Juwan Howard - Washington Bullets
34 Anthony Mason - Charlotte Hornets
35 Tom Gugliotta - Minnesota Timberwolves
36 Avery Johnson - San Antonio Spurs
37 Cedric Ceballos - Phoenix Suns
38 Patrick Ewing - New York Knicks
39 Joe Smith - Golden State Warriors
40 Dennis Rodman - Chicago Bulls
41 Alonzo Mourning - Miami Heat
42 Kevin Garnett - Minnesota Timberwolves
43 Antonio McDyess - Denver Nuggets
44 Detlef Schrempf - Seattle SuperSonics
45 Reggie Miller - Indiana Pacers
46 Charles Barkley - Houston Rockets
47 Derrick Coleman - Philadelphia 76ers
48 Brian Grant - Sacramento Kings
49 Kenny Anderson - Portland Trail Blazers
50 Otis Thorpe - Detroit Pistons
51 Rod Strickland - Washington Bullets
52 Eric Williams - Boston Celtics
53 Rony Seikaly - Orlando Magic
54 Danny Manning - Phoenix Suns
55 Karl Malone - Utah Jazz
56 B.J. Armstrong - Golden State Warriors
57 Greg Anthony - Vancouver Grizzlies
58 Larry Johnson - New York Knicks
59 Loy Vaught - Los Angeles Clippers
60 Sean Elliott - San Antonio Spurs
61 Dikembe Mutombo - Atlanta Hawks
62 Clarence Weatherspoon - Philadelphia 76ers
63 Jamal Mashburn - Dallas Mavericks
64 Bryant Reeves - Vancouver Grizzlies
65 Vlade Divac - Charlotte Hornets
66 Shawn Kemp - Seattle SuperSonics
67 LaPhonso Ellis - Denver Nuggets
68 Tyrone Hill - Cleveland Cavaliers
69 David Robinson - San Antonio Spurs
70 Shaquille O'Neal - Los Angeles Lakers
71 Doug Christie - Toronto Raptors
72 Jayson Williams - New Jersey Nets
73 Michael Finley - Dallas Mavericks
74 Tim Hardaway - Miami Heat
75 Clyde Drexler - Houston Rockets
76 Joe Dumars - Detroit Pistons
77 Glenn Robinson - Milwaukee Bucks
78 Dana Barros - Boston Celtics
79 Jason Kidd - Phoenix Suns
80 Michael Jordan - Chicago Bulls
Rookies - Shop on eBay
R1 Allen Iverson - Philadelphia 76ers RC
R2 Stephon Marbury - Minnesota Timberwolves RC
R3 Shareef Abdur-Rahim - Vancouver Grizzlies RC
R4 Marcus Camby - Toronto Raptors RC
R5 Ray Allen - Milwaukee Bucks RC
R6 Antoine Walker - Boston Celtics RC
R7 Lorenzen Wright - Los Angeles Clippers RC
R8 Kerry Kittles - New Jersey Nets RC
R9 Samaki Walker - Dallas Mavericks RC
R10 Tony Delk - Charlotte Hornets RC
R11 Vitaly Potapenko - Cleveland Cavaliers RC
R12 Jerome Williams - Detroit Pistons RC
R13 Todd Fuller - Golden State Warriors RC
R14 Erick Dampier - Indiana Pacers RC
R15 Derek Fisher - Los Angeles Lakers RC
R16 Donald Whiteside - Toronto Raptors RC
R17 John Wallace - New York Knicks RC
R18 Steve Nash - Phoenix Suns RC
R19 Brian Evans - Orlando Magic RC
R20 Jermaine O'Neal - Portland Trail Blazers RC
R21 Roy Rogers - Vancouver Grizzlies RC
R22 Priest Lauderdale - Atlanta Hawks RC
R23 Kobe Bryant - Los Angeles Lakers RC
R24 Martin Muursepp - Miami Heat RC
R25 Zydrunas Ilgauskas - Cleveland Cavaliers RC
Retro - Shop on eBay
TB1 Avery Johnson - San Antonio Spurs
TB2 Chris Webber - Washington Bullets
TB3 Sean Elliott - San Antonio Spurs
TB4 Joe Dumars - Detroit Pistons
TB5 Grant Hill - Detroit Pistons
TB6 Gary Payton - Seattle SuperSonics
TB7 Shawn Kemp - Seattle SuperSonics
TB8 Shaquille O'Neal - Los Angeles Lakers
TB9 Eddie Jones - Los Angeles Lakers
TB10 John Wallace - New York Knicks
TB11 Patrick Ewing - New York Knicks
TB12 Jerry Stackhouse - Philadelphia 76ers
TB13 Allen Iverson - Philadelphia 76ers
TB14 Latrell Sprewell - Golden State Warriors
TB15 Dino Radja - Boston Celtics
TB16 David Wesley - Boston Celtics
TB17 Joe Smith - Golden State Warriors
TB18 Damon Stoudamire - Toronto Raptors
TB19 Marcus Camby - Toronto Raptors
TB20 Juwan Howard - Washington Bullets

Best Cuts Set Checklist

20 cards. 1:24 packs.
PARALLEL CARDS: Refractors - 1:96 packs, Atomic Refractors - 1:192 packs
1996-97 Bowmans Best Basketball Best Cuts Michael Jordan

BC1 Karl Malone
BC2 Michael Jordan
BC3 Juwan Howard
BC4 Charles Barkley
BC5 Jerry Stackhouse
BC6 Anfernee Hardaway
BC7 Shaquille O'Neal
BC8 Alonzo Mourning
BC9 Shawn Kemp
BC10 Scottie Pippen
BC11 David Robinson
BC12 Kevin Garnett
BC13 Patrick Ewing
BC14 Hakeem Olajuwon
BC15 Damon Stoudamire
BC16 Grant Hill
BC17 Dennis Rodman
BC18 Chris Webber
BC19 Gary Payton
BC20 John Stockton

Best Picks Set Checklist

10 cards. 1:24 packs.
PARALLEL CARDS: Refractors - 1:96 packs, Atomic Refractors - 1:192 packs
1996-97 Bowmans Best Basketball Picks Refractor Ray Allen

BP1 Stephon Marbury
BP2 Marcus Camby
BP3 Lorenzen Wright
BP4 John Wallace
BP5 Ray Allen
BP6 Kerry Kittles
BP7 Shareef Abdur-Rahim
BP8 Todd Fuller
BP9 Allen Iverson
BP10 Kobe Bryant

Best Shots Set Checklist

10 cards. 1:12 packs.
PARALLEL CARDS: Refractors - 1:48 packs, Atomic Refractors - 1:96 packs
1996-97 Bowmans Best Basketball Shots Michael Jordan

BS1 Scottie Pippen
BS2 Gary Payton
BS3 Shaquille O'Neal
BS4 Hakeem Olajuwon
BS5 Kevin Garnett
BS6 Michael Jordan
BS7 Anfernee Hardaway
BS8 Grant Hill
BS9 Shawn Kemp
BS10 Dennis Rodman

Honor Roll Duals Set Checklist

10 cards. 1:48 packs.
PARALLEL CARDS: Refractors - 1:192 packs, Atomic Refractors - 1:384 packs
1996-97 Bowmans Best Basketball Honor Roll Grant Hill

HR1 Charles Barkley - John Stockton
HR2 Michael Jordan - Hakeem Olajuwon
HR3 Patrick Ewing - Karl Malone
HR4 Dennis Rodman - Arvydas Sabonis
HR5 Scottie Pippen - David Robinson
HR6 Glen Rice - Shawn Kemp
HR7 Shaquille O'Neal - Alonzo Mourning
HR8 Anfernee Hardaway - Chris Webber
HR9 Grant Hill - Juwan Howard
HR10 Kevin Garnett - Jerry Stackhouse


Trey Treutel  |  E-Mail Author
Trey Treutel is an Ole Miss grad and a lifelong sports fanatic. He is a huge fan of the NBA and NFL, as well as soccer, college basketball and college football. As a kid, he collected football and basketball cards. In more recent years, he started collecting basketball cards again on a whim and has since expanded to other sports and entertainment options. Find Trey on Twitter at @datreute or Google+.

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