Sports Illustrated Blog #123 on our way to #200 – Jordan 9.8’s

Welcome to my Sports Illustrated/TIME magazine blog – Your collector’s guide to the latest hobby updates and insight into what’s trending now.

Welcome to our latest edition of the most informative SI blog out there.   Continuing with our GOAT theme – Michael Jordan and his CGC 9.8’s.   

Michael has two SI covers appearing on the list of SI Top Ten all time covers.  I know the SI top ten is subjective and still open for debate however, there is no debate that two Jordan’s make the list.  Everyone knows about the first three Jordan covers, so let’s focus this blog on the other 47.  

My grouping of the next Jordan’s are his covers 1986 thru 1991 – 16 in all.  As of this writing, there are 6 – 9.8’s (not including the SOY) in this group – no cover with more than one.  If you have a 9.6, that’s really good but plan on more 9.8’s in the future.  There is nothing specifically difficult about these covers so I anticipate more 9.8’s as more mags are submitted for grading.  

Something to consider here is the CGC grading process.  Over the past 10 years, the grading process has evolved in its technology, equipment, knowledge, and parameters all adding to tougher grades.  I can tell you first hand that a 9.8 today is an unblemished magazine – no exceptions.  

I disagree with CGC that the grading process starts at 9.8, not 10.  A perfect magazine is a 9.8 and there has never been a higher graded magazine (out of 5-10,000).  Any defect, not matter how minute, drops the grade from 9.8.  To prove my point, there is never a grader note on a 9.8.  Why even have the higher grades 9.9 and 10?  Doesn’t make sense to me.   

Thru the years, I think CGC has been tightening their parameters as they standardize each grade level.   

Although every grade has a bit of subjectivity, their definition of any specific grade has become more repeatable.  

In this area, CGC has dramatically improved since its early days of “magazine” grading.  As a result, many of the vintage highest grades were submitted pre-2018.  

The next group of Jordan covers would include everything post 1991 – 31 mags altogether.  Jordan has been very collectible since the early 90’s and many SI collectors have saved and protected their Jordan purchases religiously so again, I anticipate a growing total of 9.8’s as more later Jordan’s are submitted.   

Even given the potential increasing Jordan 9.8 population, do not underestimate the future popularity of ANY Jordan CGC 9.8.   

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Great collecting to you in our second century of blogs and best fortunes with Sports Illustrated/SPORT/BASEBALL magazines.

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