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There wasn’t much more of a sure thing than drafting Shaq coming out of LSU in 1992, as he was a beast among kids. The Orlando Magic drafted Shaquille O’Neal (3/6/1972) as the 1st overall pick in the 1992 NBA draft. He also played for the Lakers, Heat, Suns, Cavaliers, and Celtics.


He played 19 years in the league and was inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame in 2016. Some may disagree, but we feel Shaq was the best Center the game has ever seen and will most likely see as the days of a true center seem about over (unless rules are changed).

Shaquille O’Neal Rookie Year Stats: 81 games | 23.4 PPG | 13.9 TRB | 3.5 BLK


  • Shaquille Rashaun O’Neal
  • Twitter: @SHAQ
  • Position: Center (top 3 of all-time in the NBA)
  • Shoots: Right 7-1, 325lb

He played college ball at LSU and is also known by Shaq, Diesel, The Big Aristotle, Superman, Shaq Fu, and our favorite Shaq Daddy. Shaq quickly became a dominating force in the league averaging 23.4 points as a rookie!

Related Cards: Kobe Bryant Rookie Cards | Best Luka Doncic Rookie Cards

Let’s check out the best Shaq Rookie Cards for your investment dollar. We feel these are some of the better rookie card investments in basketball.


1992 Shaquille O’Neal Upper Deck Rookie Card #1

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Shaq was a monster of a human, and his slam dunks were often a thing of beauty. In his Upper Deck rookie card, they attempt to capture a Shaq dunk from beginning to end in what is a pretty cool card. The 1992 Shaquille O’Neal Upper Deck rookie card shows Shaq dunking the ball in a moving still frame.

Card Notes: Numbered #1 the back reads “The 1993 NBA All-Star Game, which set the record for highest TV ratings in the event’s history showcased the league’s newest Superstar, Orlabod’s Shaquille O’Neal. Through the All-Star break, O’Neal had accomplished feats only dreamed of by rookies

Our Take: We really like the Shaq Upper Deck rookie card and love the all-black backdrop which really makes the Shaq dunk POP


1992 Shaquille O’Neal Topps Gold RC #362

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The 1992 Topps Gold is by far our favorite Shaq rookie card. The card features O’Neal in a fierce battle underneath the basket, calling for the rock with a look on his face that screams what the hell?! GIVE ME THE DAMN BALL! Topps offers a base option that isn’t a bad investment, but we typically bypass that and only go for the GOLD.

Card Info: Numbered #362, the back of the card reads “The Shaq has been lauded as a complete center who is virtually unstoppable with the ball. The 1992 All-American led the nation in shots blocked (a nasty 5.2 per game) and was second in rebounding.

Our Take: This card is money in the bank and we check eBay auctions early and often for it.


1992 Shaquille “Shaq” O’Neal Stadium Club Beam Team #21

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Another badass-looking Shaq Rookie Card showing him doing what he does best… being a BEAST down below. The 1992 Topps Stadium Club rookie card shows Shaq taking on gravity and rising above the rim for a rebound.

Card Info: No number but the back of the card reads, “The youngest beam teamer (he turns 21 in March 1993), Orlando’s Shaquille O’Neal, has slam dunk the NBA like perhaps no other rookie

Our Take: A good-looking card at a good-looking price via current values. We just bought a few of these earlier in 2020.


Shaquille O’Neal Rookie Card Worth

Shaq’s rookie cards are still relatively cheap compared to the other greats of his generation. Most of his rookie cards can be had for well under $1000. If you have questions about a specific Shaq rookie card, please email us at



  • 1992 Upper Deck RC #1
  • 1992 Upper Deck Trade Card Redemption RC #1b
  • 1992 Classic Draft RC /2500 #1
  • 1992 Classic 4 Sport Rookie Auto Card (No Number)
  • 1992 Fleer Rising Stars Golden Book (No Number)
  • 1992 Fleer RC #401
  • 1992 Fleer Ultra RC #328
  • 1992 NBA Hoops RC #442
  • 1992 SkyBox RC #382
  • 1992 Topps RC #362
  • 1992 Topps Stadium Club RC #247
  • 1992 Upper Deck RC #1
  • 1992 NBA Hoops Magic’s All-Rookie Team RC #1
  • 1992 NBA Hoops Draft Redemption RC #A
  • 1992 Skybox Draft Picks Redemption RC #DP1
  • 1992 Skybox Head of the Class Redemption
  • 1992 Topps Stadium Club Beam Team RC #21


Ranking The Top 5

If you’re looking to invest in Shaquille O’Neal rookie cards, we recommend following the ranking list below.

Please note this is not based on price or popularity but on what perceives as the best ROI.

  1. 1992 Topps Gold ROOKIE RC #362
  2. 1992 Upper Deck Trade Card RC #1
  3. 1992 Stadium Club BEAM TEAM #2
  4. 1992 Fleer ROOKIE RC #401
  5. 1992 Hoops Rookie Card Draft Redemption #A


Buyers Guide & Investment Outlook

Shaq spends his free time doing commercials and sports analysis on TNT alongside fan-favorite Charles Barkley.

  • Investment Rating: Strong Buy (4.8 out of 5)
  • Best Shaq Rookie Card: 1992 Shaquille O’Neal Topps Gold RC #362 (moderate buyers) or 1992 Shaq Beam Team RC (high-end buyers)
  • Ownership Disclosure: None

You would think his face constantly being in the public eye would help the value of his rookie cards. But honestly, Shaquille O’Neal’s rookie card values are slightly lower than we expected, considering he is one of the best players the league has ever seen and the dominating force of his era.

We do expect Shaq’s rookie cards to increase in value moderately faster than other big-name players for a variety of reasons; one being the rise of the NBA as America’s number one sport, and two, they are starting from an undervalued position in the first place.

We don’t like Shaq’s rookie cards at these values… WE LOVE THEM and have been loading the truck up with them for a few years now.

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