the most expensive sports card sales to date
* indicates a private sale
for years, the t206 honus wagner reigned supreme as not only the most famous, but also the most expensive of all baseball cards, selling for a million dollars in 2000.
But in the last year alone, a 1952 Mickey mantle card sold for $5.2 million. and a host of modern cards broke a wagner’s record, $3.75 million paid out in May.
A lebron james logoman card sold for $5.2 million. a luka doncic logoman card sold for $4.6 million. And a Patrick Mahomes rookie patch card sold for $4.3 million.
but the bet remains on top, including a new one appearing on the market to take first place.
August 7, 2022 update
It’s been a while since we’ve had to update this list, but honus wagner is back at the top of the market.
a t-206 with an sgc grade of 2 was auctioned at gold auctions and sold for a record price of $7.25 million. that makes it the most expensive card sold of all time.
adding this wagner card to the list removed a wagner psa 5 from the list.
July 28, 2021 update
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes continues to break records, but this time at the souvenir market.
an autographed 2017 nfl national shield rookie patrick mahomes card sold at private auction for $4.3 million, making it the most expensive nfl trading card sale to date .
card is a bgs 8.5 and 1 out of 1. it easily outperformed tom brady’s autographed billboard of 2000 playoff contenders, which sold for $3.1 million.
update June 5, 2021
a week after being eliminated from the top 10, tom brady is back.
Brady’s autographed 2000 playoff contenders championship rookie card sold for $3.1 million on Friday night. the bgs mint 9 was sold after receiving 32 offers in lelands. it is now the most expensive football card ever sold and the only one in the top 10.
The previous maximum for a Brady rookie card was $2.25 million.
falling off the list after brady’s addition was one of the honus wagner t206 cards. that psa 8 was sold for 2.8 million dollars.
update May 27, 2021
One of two extant 1979 wayne gretzky o-pee-chee rookie cards sold for $3.75 million to make the list of the best trading card sales of all time.
The card, which was sold at a heritage auction, is the most expensive hockey card ever sold at public auction.
The big addition brought down Joe Garagiola’s Wagner Honor Card T206, which sold for $2.5 million. four other wagner cards remain in the top 10.
update May 24, 2021
prices for honus wagner cards continue to rise as the most expensive wagner card sold on saturday at goldin’s auctions.
the wagner card, a white border t206 psa grade 2, sold for $3.75 million, beating the previous mark of $3.7 million for a t206 psa 5.
wagner now owns five of the top 10 spots on the list of most expensive trading cards sold.
by adding the last card to the list, the tom brady rookie card was removed. Brady’s card sold for $2.25 million.
In other trading card news, the most expensive Michael Jordan card ever sold sold for $2.1 million at Goldin’s auctions. It was an autographed and used jersey card from the 1997 NBA All-Star game.
April 26, 2021 update
move over, mickey cloak. no company for the most expensive trading card sold to date.
An exquisite lebron james 2003-04 upper deck rookie patch autograph set a record for the most valuable basketball card ever sold and tied for the mantle of most expensive card in history at $5.2 million. The card, sold by pwcc on April 26, was rated 9 mint.
update April 3, 2021
the first nfl player is on the list and of course it’s tom brady.
brady’s autograph for the 2000 playoff contenders championship rookie ticket, rated nm-mt+ 8.5, sold for more than $2.25 million at auction in lelands early Saturday morning. the initial offer was $75,000 and there were 67 total offers on the card.
adding brady to our top 10 list takes kobe bryant’s 1996-97 card, which sold for $1.79 million, off the board.
update March 6, 2021
A Kobe Bryant 1996-97 Topps Chrome Refractor surpassed Michael Jordan for the 10th highest publicly known chrome sale of all time on Saturday night, March 6.
Bryant’s card sold for $1.79 million at goldin auctions, beating Jordan’s $1.4 million autographed jersey card from 1997 by #1. 10 on our all-time list.
if bryant’s card didn’t beat jordan, another card did anyway. An autographed LeBron James 2003-04 rookie patch card also sold at Goldin auctions for $1.5 million. a lebron card currently has the no. 9 in the table above.
feb. February 28, 2021 update
No matter how things change or what new collectibles appear, sometimes there is no way to replace that original sports trading card.
Trading card sales have been popular ever since Honus Wagner’s T206 became the first card to sell for a million dollars in 2000. While that card has become the face of expensive sports cards, it’s not really the biggest sale of all time.
That honor belongs to a 1952 topps mickey cloak, which holds two spots in the top 10 best sellers of all time. It first sold for $2.8 million in April 2018. It then became the biggest known sale of all time in January 2021 when it was bought by Rob Gough for $5.2 million.
on february 28, 2021, a luka doncic card became the second highest sale ever known. Collector Nick Fiorello purchased an autographed 1 of 1 Doncic Logoman card for $4.6 million.
which outsold mike trout’s 2009 autographed chrome prospector superfractor card by $3.9 million in August 2020.
wagner’s infamous letter ranks at no. 4 on the list with $3.1 million. It is one of three Wagner T206 cards on the top 10 list. Arizona Diamondbacks owner Ken Kendrick bought the “Gretzky Wagner” in a private sale for $2.8 million in 2007, though he didn’t reveal himself as the buyer until 2011.
The final bet on the list was sold on Feb. 27, 2021 for $2.5 million at estate auctions. this wagner is known as the ‘garigiola wagner’ as he was owned by former d-backs general manager joe garigiola.
A trio of nba players round out the top 10, starting with giannis antetokounmpo’s logoman which sold for $1.8 million. The autographed lebron james rookie patch card also sold for $1.8 million.
on Feb. On January 4, 2021, an autographed card featuring a jersey worn at Michael Jordan’s 1997 game sold for $1.44 million.
Only missing from the list is Wayne Gretzky’s 1979 o-pee-chee card, which sold for $1.3 million. Currently, a 1996-97 Kobe Bryant Topps card is up for auction with a top bid of over $1.2 million.
Although some cards are sold privately and are not known to the public, this list is what is publicly known.
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