Gretzky Rookie Breaks Hockey Card Record

Seven years following his retirement, the greatest player in the history of professional hockey is still setting records. MINT State, an Illinois dealer specializing in high-grade sports cards has sold a 1979 O-Pee-Chee #18 Wayne Gretzky rookie card for $80,000.

The company claims it is the most valuable hockey trading card in existence. Although Gretzky’s 1979-80 rookie cards from OPC and Topps are perceived to be a fairly modern issue and not considered especially rare, the card is the only Gem Mint 10 ever graded by Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA) and therefore commanded a huge premium.

Rick Snyder, founder and President of MINT State, brokered the sale between two of the company’s clients.

“Our consignor purchased the only PSA-graded Gem Mint 10 of Gretzky’s OPC rookie card in August 2005,” explained Snyder. “He made a recent decision to refocus his collection and asked MINT State to find a buyer. In less than 30 minutes, the card had sold to a private collector for $80,000, the highest price ever paid for a single hockey card.”

Snyder continued, “Extremely high grade football, basketball, and hockey cards continue to escalate in value at higher rates than their baseball counterparts. The buyer viewed this as a rare opportunity to acquire the finest known rookie card of a major sport’s universally recognized all-time greatest player.”

Wayne Gretzky rookie cards (and others) closing soon on eBay