1948 Bowman Basketball #69 - George Mikan Rookie "Blue Variation" SGC 8 NM-MT - "Pop 1" Blue Variation; The SOLE & HIGHEST GRADED "Blue Variation" Mikan on the SGC Census Report!
The 1948 Bowman Gum Co. set irrefutable stands as the "landmark" basketball compilation, issued long before the likes of Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain, Oscar Robertson Lew Alcindor, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James (just to mention a few of pro basketball's iconic stars) stepped foot on an NBA hardwood floor. That illustrious 1948 compilation just happens to include the arguable "Holy Grail" of all vintage basketball cards, the hallowed 1948 Bowman #69 George Mikan rookie card that is presented here in a brilliant SGC NM/MT 8 holder in his seldom surfacing "blue variation". Its incredible scarcity is substantiated by the SGC "Pop" Chart listing this as the SOLE and HIGHEST GRADED "Blue Variation Mikan!
Similar to Babe Ruth's stature as a baseball icon, professional basketball's true Hall of Fame pioneer is none other than the immortal George Mikan for no other player contributed a more significant marketable role to basketball's ultimate development than this magnificent center. Mikan scored 11,764 career points, an average of 22.6 per game, retired as the all-time leading scorer, averaged 13.4 rebounds and compiled 2.8 assists in 520 NBL, BAA and NBA games. Adding to his impeccable resume was seven BAA and NBA championships, an All-Star MVP trophy, three scoring titles and being member of the first four NBA All-Star and the first six All-BAA and All-NBA Teams. For all these reasons, he was voted the greatest player of the first half of the century by The Associated Press, and was selected as one of the NBA 50 Greatest Players in 1996.
No wonder collectors seek his most valuable cards, yet unfortunately, there are only a handful of mainstream George Mikan issues to choose from including his 1948 Bowman Rookie, several early-1950s Wheaties issues, Kellogg's Pep and some late-1940s Exhibits. Yet, serious enthusiasts truly point to only one of those aforementioned issues, his highly coveted 1948 Bowman rookie card that stands alongside other sports cardboard icons such as baseball's T206 Wagner, football's National Chicle Bronko Nagurski, and hockey's Bobby Orr or Wayne Gretzky rookie cards, just to mention a few. The outstanding "8" assessment is highlighted by a myriad of world-class attributes, starting with the classic Mikan image affixed to a super clean blue (somewhat purple hued) background. Additional superlatives include stellar clarity and contrast, as well as an atypically extremely well-centered image. Clean borders, pinpoint corners, and no glaring surface blemishes whatsoever more than substantiate the magnificent grade.
Of particular interest is the scarcer "blue variation" on Mikan's Laker's jersey and belt, missing the red ink that typically outlines "LAKERS", "21" and Mikan's belt. Recently, a PSA 9 Mikan rookie fetched a record $426K in our Dr. Newman auction, justifying this issue's iconic stature and future investment potential for any high-grade examples. When you consider the staggering price tags now affiliated with some of the modern basketball cards of LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan (a LeBron rookie has fetched a staggering $5.2 million), we can fully expect these pricing surges to continue filtering down to some of basketball's premier vintage issues. With that in mind, no pre-1950's basketball subject carries the desirability, prestige and value of a high-grade George Mikan 1948 Bowman Rookie, and this awe-inspiring "Pop 1"/highest graded SGC 8 "blue variation" offering unquestionably resides as one of the most significant vintage basketball cads extant!
MIN BID $12,500