1948 Bowman Basketball #69 George Mikan Rookie

Sold For: $2,160

Auction Year: 2017 spring

Lot: 2240

Item Year: 1948

Category: Football/Basketball/Hockey/Boxing/Other Sports

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Presented is an extremely attractive example of Hall of Famer George Mikan's rookie card from the 1948 Bowman basketball set, widely regarded as the king of all basketball cards. The 1948 Bowman Basketball series is particularly significant as this was the first set ever issued devoted exclusively to basketball and the only basketball set ever produced by Bowman. The George Mikan card in this set is considered the most sought-after and valuable of all basketball cards. Cards from this set are extremely hard to find in high grade in part because these cards (like 1949 Bowman baseball) often naturally have soft corners due to the quality of the paper stock on which they are printed. The offered card is a remarkable example in that it presents as Ex+, with a crisp, clean image, bold blue background, light wear on the corners, and centering slightly to the right. Clean reverse with bold text. The card has been encapsulated by PSA as "Authentic" because it displays a hand cut along all four edges. As advanced collectors are well-aware, 1948 Bowman basketball cards occasionally surface missing the red or blue coloring. It is believed that simple printing errors are responsible for these color variations, and are the result of cards not going through an ink process, or the printing machines running out of ink. While there is no way for us to be certain, we believe these were never actually issued in packs. A small quantity of these error sheets was probably given to neighborhood kids or saved from the trash at the Bowman factory in Philadelphia, and later hand cut and long ago dispersed throughout the collecting community. The offered example is hand-cut, likely from these sheets, and which is why it did not grade numerically. This card represents an outstanding opportunity to acquire a superbly attractive example of one of the most important vintage basketball cards at perhaps a fraction of the cost of a numerically graded example with the same visual appeal. Reserve $500. Estimate (open).

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