Sports Collectors

PSA Chips Away at Grading Backlog, but October Numbers Dip

PSA graded about 640,000 cards in October, down from 830,000 that were processed in September as it continues to push through a backlog of submissions dating back to last year.

That figure represented a significant decrease from the record setting month of September, when graders added over 830,000 cards to the company’s Population Report. 

According to figures compiled by, PSA graded more Pokemon cards last month than any type of sports card.  Second on the list was basketball with 175,000 cards processed.  They also saw 136,000 baseball, 83,000 football, 16,000 soccer and 9,000 hockey cards.   

PSA Chips Away at Grading Backlog, but October Numbers Dip

The most graded sports cards continued to be of the modern variety, led by basketball. PSA added 13,800 2019-20 Prizm Basketball cards to the Pop Report in October.  The total number of cards from that product that PSA has graded now sits at more than 473,000. 

The company graded 12,100 2019-20 Chronicles Basketball last month, pushing the two-year total to 126,000.  They also added 11,700 2020 Panini Mosaic Football and 7,400 2020 Topps Chrome Baseball.

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The list of players whose cards were graded most during October includes some very familiar names:

  • Michael Jordan 19,400
  • LeBron James 12,800
  • Kobe Bryant 9,400
  • Ja Morant 7,700
  • Zion Williamson 7,300
  • Luis Robert 7,200
  • Shaquille O’Neal 6,400
  • Luka Doncic 5,500
  • Ken Griffey Jr. 5,100
  • Fernando Tatis Jr. 5,100
  • PSA has now graded approximately four million cards since April 1 according to GemRate, a number that’s still less than half of the total number of cards that were in the backlog when the company shut down all but the highest service levels at the end of March.  Most of the cards that caused the unprecedented pileup were current era issues.

    The company has increased staffing and acquired additional office space at its Southern California headquarters this year in an effort to increase efficiency.

    While the October numbers were down from the previous month, PSA started November with the addition of 41,000 cards to the Pop Report on Monday, a larger output than any single day in October.

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