Blake Martinez, former NFL linebacker for the Las Vegas Raiders, recently sold one of his most prized possessions, a very rare Pokemon Illustrator card, nicknamed the “Swirllustrator” for $672,000 USD. The card was graded 9.5, “Gem Mint” by the CGC. The card was sold via Goldin Auctions at the end of October.
Two weeks after the auction, Martinez announced his retirement after seven seasons in the NFL, and at only 28 years of age. He told his fans that he has chosen to step away from his career to focus on his family and future passions. One of those passions is trading Pokémon cards with his collection estimated to be over $1 Million.
Pokemon cards tend to fetch some of the highest prices on the market. The most expensive Pokemon card sold to date was a PSA 10 Pikachu Illustrator that was purchased by YouTuber Logan Paul for over $5 Million in July 2021. Leaving sports to become a full time trader of cards goes to show how rewarding the collectibles space can be.