Fall 2022 Auction
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 12/2/2022
The 1986 Fleer Michael Jordan rookie card might enjoy the status of being the most popular issue ever dedicated to the hardcourt, but it’s the rookie card of another legend, Bill Russell, that is perhaps the sport’s most important pasteboard. Russell never led the league in scoring or even averaged more than 20 points per game in any season. What he did was lead a team of perennial winners, the Boston Celtics, to an unprecedented 11 NBA championships over his 13 seasons. He was a perfect match for the Topps company, who were also winners in their own right. After eliminating Bowman and assuming dominance in the baseball card market, Topps tried their hand at expanding into basketball cards but abandoned the project after just one year. As a result, the 1957 Topps basketball set is a hobby icon that features debut cards of Bob Cousy, Tom Heinsohn, and Bob Pettit, but the Bill Russell rookie card is the cornerstone of the series. Bill Russell’s rookie card is a scarce short print, and like every other card in the condition-sensitive series, is almost always plagued with centering problems and print defects, but the PSA 8 specimen offered here is a true marvel that has been spared all of the pitfalls common to the issue. Amazingly well-centered, the card shows just a degree or two shift toward the northwest, well within the bounds of a NM/MT grade, with virtually none of the stray print that customarily dominates the surface of lower-graded, and even some higher-graded, examples. The smooth edges meet at endpoints that easily reach NM/MT status while the clean reverse gives no cause for concern. About 1,000 1957 Topps Bill Russell rookie cards have been graded by PSA and only 5 have achieved a grade higher than this one, but the overall appeal of this prize can stand toe to toe with any of them. This is a tremendously strong specimen that would not only be a worthy addition to the most advanced of collections but stand as a centerpiece of an elite assemblage proudly residing at or near the top of the PSA Set Registry.
1957 Topps #77 Bill Russell PSA 8 NM-MT
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Minimum Bid: $25,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $146,574.18
Number Bids:27
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