Redskin

Wayne Gretzky’s O-Pee-Chee rookie card sells for record $3.75 million


A Wayne Gretzky card from his rookie season with the Edmonton Oilers sold for $3.75 million in a private transaction, Heritage Auctions announced Thursday, more than doubling the previous record for a hockey card.

The 1979 O-Pee-Chee Gretzky rookie card is one of only two known to be graded as a Gem Mint 10 by Professional Sports Authenticator. The only other such version sold at auction for $1.29 million in December, becoming the first hockey card to sell for more than $1 million.

“There are just a handful of cards out there to reach such stratospheric heights, and they bear such names as Mickey Mantle, LeBron James, Mike Trout, Honus Wagner and Michael Jordan,” said Dan Imler, Heritage Sports’ vice president of private sales and consignments. “It’s only fitting that greatest hockey player of all time, and one of the most beloved and revered athletes of the 20th century, joins their estimable ranks.”

“Throughout many years of collecting, this card has always been our ‘white whale,'” said the buyer, who wished to remain anonymous. “Our family is thrilled to become the new guardians of this world-class hobby treasure.”

The Athletic ranked Gretzky’s O-Pee-Chee rookie card No. 10 on its list of the 25 most iconic sports cards of all time last year.

Gretzky spent 10 seasons with the Oilers before he was traded to the Los Angeles Kings. He won four Stanley Cups with Edmonton, including the season before he was traded. He also won nine Hart Trophies as the league’s most valuable player, including eight in a row with the Oilers from 1980 to 1987.

Gretzky will join TNT as a studio analyst for the 2021-22 season when the NHL’s TV contract starts with the broadcasting company. TNT signed him to a multi-year deal to work during the regular season and playoffs.





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