The Beckett Blog

Examining the Basketball Hall of Fame’s latest class on cards by Chris Olds

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame has unveiled its 2010 class of inductees, a crop that includes representatives from from all levels of basketball — and even “The Dream Team” from the 1992 Olympics.

Here’s a rundown of who’s in and where they appear on cardboard …

JERRY BUSS — Owner of the Los Angeles Lakers since 1979.
He appears on just a handful of trading cards — and most of them feature his interest in poker. He does have a 1/1 card in the 2009 Sportkings Owner’s Box Cut Autographs set.

CYNTHIA COOPER — Former University of Southern California player and four-time WNBA title winner with the Houston Comets.
The WNBA legend appears on 81 cards and just nine certified autographs. Her 1997 Pinnacle Inside WNBA #2 RC is worth $15, while her most valuable card is her $600 1999 Hoops WNBA Autographics Century Marks #1 autograph.

ROBERT HURLEY Sr. — Coach at St. Anthony’s High School in Jersey City, N.J., since 1972 where he has more than 900 wins, 25 state titles and three USA Today national titles. He’s just the third person elected to the Hall for service to high school basketball.
He doesn’t appear on any basketball cards, but his son — former Duke star Bobby Hurley — does. He has 204 cards despite playing just five seasons in the NBA.

DENNIS JOHNSON — This former Boston Celtics star was a member of three NBA championship teams and won MVP honors in the 1979 Finals with the Seattle SuperSonics.
D.J. appears on just 69 cards, but 22 of them are certified autographs. His Rookie Card from the 1978-79 Topps set sells for $8.

GUS JOHNSON This five-time NBA All-Star played 10 seasons in the NBA for the Baltimore Bullets and Phoenix Suns and was a member of the 1973 ABA champion Indiana Pacers.
He appears on a total of 11 basketball cards and has zero autograph or memorabilia cards. His 1969-70 Topps RC sells for $15.

KARL MALONE “The Mailman” was a two-time NBA MVP and a 14-time All-Star for the Utah Jazz. He was named one of the NBA’s 50 Greatest Players in 1996.
He appears on a total of 2,673 basketball cards — but has just 56 certified autographs, meaning there’s not much to go around compared to many well-known other Hall of Famers from his playing days. His 1986-87 Fleer RC sells for $40.

MACIEL “UBIRATAN” PEREIRA Brazil’s king of basketball won five South American Championships and 11 titles in the São Paulo League. He is a member of the FIBA Hall of Fame.
He does not have any cards in the Beckett database.

SCOTTIE PIPPEN This seven-time NBA All-Star won six NBA championships with the Chicago Bulls as Michael Jordan’s right-hand man.
Pippen appears on 2,101 basketball cards and just 90 certified autograph cards. His lone RC, coming in the 1988-89 Fleer set, is $25.

Also being inducted is the 1960 U.S. Olympic team, which included 10 NBA players and six Hall of Famers, along with the 1992 U.S. Olympic team. “The Dream Team” won gold at the Barcelona games, winning by an average of 43.8 points. Eight members of the team are Hall of Famers and and Malone and Pippen are going in this year.

While many of the Dream Team cards aren’t all that valuable these days, anyone who collected at that time should remember the excitement that these cards generated as they were much more unique than others found in packs. Will there be an uptick in interest in these inexpensive cards like there typically is with other Hall of Fame inductions? We’ll have to wait and see when they’re all enshrined on Aug. 13.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an e-mail to him at Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

5 Comments so far
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i wish the NBA would establish a pro basketball hall of fame so all of the nba greats could be enshrined without sharing space with wnba players and college coaches/announcers. i mean could you imagine sports writers inducting members of the colorado silver bullets into cooperstown?

Comment by President Obama

The baseball hall has all kinds of exhibits.

And they induct owners and announcers just like other halls.

Comment by chrisolds

i’m not talking about exhibits. i’m talking about players

Comment by President Obama

and college announcers like dick vitale. there are no reasons why this annoying loud mouth should be in any hall

Comment by President Obama

Women, announcers, builders – they’re all pros. I think the hall of fame as it exists is fine.

Comment by Anthony Chu

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