LeBron James Rookie Card Sells for Record-Breaking $5.2 Million

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LeBron James added a new crown to his collection on Monday: the most expensive basketball card of all time. 

According to PWCC Marketplace, a signed 2003 James Exquisite Collection patch card sold for a record-breaking $5.2 million in a private sale.

The buyer of the card was not disclosed.

Per PWCC Marketplace, the card also tied the all-time sports trading card record, set by a 1952 Mickey Mantle card in January. 

“This was actually in the works for a while,” PWCC’s director of business development Jesse Craig told Darren Rovell of The Action Network. “The demand for rare cards, especially basketball right now, is just like the demand for fine art.”

Craig said that trading card sales have been down recently, but high-end cards are still setting records. Twenty-three of the 24 most expensive sports trading card sales of all time have come since February 2020. 

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The previous record for a basketball card was set this past February when a 2018 one-of-a-kind, autographed Luka Dončić Panini National Treasures card went for $4.6 million in a private sale.

The LeBron card is one out of a limited edition of 23. A similar LeBron James rookie card, one out of 99, was sold for $1.72 million by Goldin Auctions on Saturday night. 

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