Rare LeBron James Rookie Card Fetches $1.8M at Auction

LeBron James during his rookie season with the Cleveland Cavilliers
Getty Images

A LeBron James basketball rookie card has been sold for a record $1.8 million at a recent auction.

The LeBron James Upper Deck rookie Patch Parallel edition card sold at auction for $1.845 million on Sunday at Goldin Auctions to Lob.com CEO Leore Avidar.

The massive price tag is the most any modern card from 1980 to present day has ever sold for, according to ESPN.

James, who began playing the 2003-2004 NBA season with the Cleveland Cavaliers, was a top prospect when he entered the league fresh out of high school.

"If we were talking about a T206 [Honus] Wagner, or a 1952 [Mickey] Mantle, it probably wouldn't be that much news," said Ken Goldin, founder of Goldin Auctions said in a statement. "But when you're talking about a card that was literally produced 17 years ago and is for a guy still playing in the NBA, it's just shocking news to a lot of people. It's really where my particular industry has been going for several years."

The rare card featured James wearing his No. 23 jersey and the edition of the card, known as a Patch Autograph Parallel, only produced the same number of cards corresponding to the number on the player's jersey. Therefore 23 of that specific card were made.

The card which was sold was also graded at a special scale, and given a 9.5 mint gem by Beckett grading service, it was one of only two of these particular cards graded that high.

"There are only two of them, one of them is in private hands and the other was up for auction," Goldin added. "So this really was the single best LeBron card that somebody could have hoped to get. It was very active bidding, a lot of bidders, and we're happy with the results."

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