Mixed martial arts (MMA) trading cards are valuable collectible cards that feature professional MMA athletes. While a relatively new professional sport compared to others featured on trading cards, Topps began printing trading cards promoting MMA in 2009 when they signed an agreement to print trading cards with UFC, one of the most popular MMA organizations. Panini America secured the rights to print cards for UFC in 2021, but Upper Deck, Topps, and other publishers make sure that other MMA leagues and fighters are also getting immortalized in valuable cardboard for fans to collect.
The reasons why fans value MMA trading cards vary. Some collectors are attracted to cards that feature their favorite fighters, while others might be interested in assembling a valuable complete set of cards from a specific series or season. The top-tier fighters dominate the list of the highest value cards, so clearly collectors like to see dominant winners on their MMA cards.
Many MMA trading cards also have special features, such as holographic designs, which can increase their value to collectors. The appearance of a three-dimensional image can be created via holographic cards, which feature an optical illusion of a hologram on them. Typically, collectors value these kinds of cards more because they are rarer. Rarity, the condition of the card, and autographs that are certified by professional graders also drive up the value of MMA trading cards. Authentication has a cost, but getting a certified valuation for a trading card can be worth it if you plan to sell your cards to other collectors.
MMA sports, and UFC in particular, continues to grow in popularity, with some sports observers predicting that it will overtake sports like football and hockey in its popularity. A number of high-grade MMA cards are already being sold for tens of thousands of dollars and with the expanding popularity of the sport, the sky’s the limit on how valuable MMA cards will get in the years ahead.