Have a look at this sweet trading card of former Spurs center Tiago Splitter that I bought off the Internet a year or two ago, I can’t quite remember. It may not command much in today’s market but, with the Silver and Black 15 deep into a losing skid, it’s a little easier on the eyes than defensive field-goal percentages.
That ink? Scribbled by the NBA champ himself. Serial printed to just 75? That’s right. And the black patch? A piece of a jersey he wore in an actual, real-life game, or at least they say below. (Given the timing of this product’s release, presumably, possibly, from the 2014 title season. Who’s to say otherwise?)
A renewed interest in cards is likely one of my less toxic holdovers from the pandemic. Like many fans of a certain age, I spent some of that extra time indoors rummaging through old boxes, tickled by what once mattered enough to live in a protective sleeve, often appreciative of the condition that these delicate things retained while indefinitely cast aside; a whole world shifting and raging outside while pages of Ron Mercer cards — why so many Ron Mercer cards? — were still holding up better than most of us.
That led to searching what else is out there and, eventually, a late-night purchase of the beaut above; affordable enough to be justified as an ironic lark, now just a joy to have around. Splitter was not my favorite Spur, although I always did appreciate his contributions, and covering this team has changed my idea of fandom, but I’ve found that the right piece of cardboard can still serve as a unique lens into my previous investment; the ups and downs (and ups again) that came with it; the takes!
I imagine there might be others with Spurs-adjacent memorabilia of their own that they might enjoy sharing. If that’s you, let us know yours in the comments below!
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