Monday, October 25, 2010

Vintage Hoops

Wednesday marks the beginning of the new NBA season. In commemoration of that, here is part of the small basketball material in my collection:

This photo is pretty cool, as it features NBA legends Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson (in his rookie season) and Jerry West. The leisure suits on the coaches are a nice touch. This is the team that would win the NBA finals in 1979-'80.

These team pictures were inserted into these packs as a Team Pin-Up:

(Not my pack...This image was taken from an eBay auction)

The 1980-'81 Topps basketball set is noted for the Magic Johnson/Larry Bird double rookie card shared with hoops legend Julius (Dr. J) Erving. It's also the first regular Topps set issued as panels rather than single cards, an idea that must have never been well-received by collectors.

As a guy who is not only a vintage collector but also a 1970s style connoisseur (which is a fancy word for "freak"), it would logically follow that I'm also a fan of 1970s basketball cards. However, I never really started picking up the cards despite the fact that the sets are often quite small and not overly tough to collect. I'll probably be pretty easily hooked if I ever chance upon a nice starer set somewhere.

Right now, I'm just working on that set of Pin-Ups. Of the 16 team pictures in the set, I'm just missing #2 (Boston Celtics) and 11 (New York Knicks). And the reason I started it? I was at a trade session with several other collectors and saw a stack of them lying on a table. Noticing that the team names were written in the same style as 1978 Topps baseball cards, I asked the owner, "What year did these come out?" He didn't even look up from the stack he was looking through. "Figure it out when you get home. They're yours now." He was just waiting for the first sucker to ask what they were.

As I said, it isn't hard to get me collecting something new when I suddenly have some items in my possession.


  1. Cool trade story. I mostly collect 90's through modern-day. I would like to get into vintage stuff, but like you, I have too many sets/collections going. There are so many great items out there that it's just too easy to get hooked. That is a nice Lakers "pjn-up" and the set should be easy to complete as there are many of them out there. Good luck in you collecting pursuits and the start of a basketball obsession!!!

  2. These posters are awesome... I love the 1978 baseball design... and the whole team picture (don't see these as often anymore) concept.

    One of these days...I'll have to add the Lakers poster to my PC.