By 1974, Julius Erving had already taken over the ABA, paving the way for one of the greatest careers in professional basketball history.
Playing for the New York Nets, the player who became known as Dr. J led the league with 27.4 points per game to win the first of three straight ABA MVPs.
Erving’s 1974 Topps ABA All-Star card just topped six figures to set a record for a Dr. J trading card.
Erving’s 1974 card shattered the record for Dr. J-only cards, selling for $132,000 in PWCC Marketplace’s Weekly Sunday Auction. The previous record, according to publicly available sales records, was $57,600 in a Feb. 2021 sale.
The colorful, perfectly-centered #200 card is graded PSA 10 Gem Mint, the only PSA 10 in existence.
“Finding any card from the 1974 Topps Basketball set in Gem Mint condition is extremely difficult due to the low print quality of the cards in the original run and the fact that basketball cards at the time weren’t an incredibly popular product,” said Jesse Craig, Director of Business Development at PWCC Marketplace.
“The reality is that very few of these cards came out of packs in good condition, and of those, even less remained in good condition over the years. That creates a scenario where finding a superstar card like Dr. J in Gem Mint condition is next to impossible. This is a very rare card to have surfaced.”
Dr. J, who played for 16 years in the ABA and NBA, is the only player in history to win an MVP award in both leagues. A Hall of Famer and three-time NBA champion, he was recently named to the NBA 75th Anniversary Team.
Erving is also featured on one of the highest-selling basketball cards of all time. His 1980 Topps NBA Scoring Leaders card, which also features rookies Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, sold for $861,000 in August 2021.