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Lot
81557

1996 NBA's 50 Greatest Players Signed Lithograph....

2012 May 3-5 Vintage Sports Collectibles Signature Auction- Dallas #7051

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Auction Ended On: May 4, 2012
Item Activity: 9 Internet/mail/phone bidders Number of Bidders
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Location: Heritage Auctions
3500 Maple Avenue
Dallas, TX 75219

Description:
1996 NBA's 50 Greatest Players Signed Lithograph. Arguably the most ambitious autograph undertaking ever devised in modern professional sports, the NBA took the occasion of its 50th anniversary in 1996 to honor 50 of the game's greatest players with a single lithograph that would include signatures of almost every last one of them. Thus was this remarkable piece of memorabilia born, somehow managing to link several generations of NBA legends from the earliest days of the fledgling league cobbled together at the end of World War II. And so you have striking pencil signatures from the likes of George Mikan, Bill Sharman, Bob Cousy, Paul Arizin and Bob Pettit, golden era names Oscar Robertson, Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain, John Havlicek, Elgin Baylor, Jerry West and Julius Erving, and more modern era luminaries Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan and Shaq. Hard to imagine such a unique and all-encompassing sports art print ever being even fantasized, much less actually delivered. The once-in-a-lifetime parameters simply cannot be duplicated. The 25-by-39-inch print features color head portraits of the NBA's selection of its Top-50 players, with 9/10 or 10/10 pencil signatures below each, with only Pistol Pete Maravich, who died in 1988, not included among the autographs. Printed on an elegant cream acid-free heavy stock, this print is matted and framed under heavy glass, with an enormous black-and-gold frame bringing the overall dimensions to 49-by-35 inches. The NBA 50 Greatest Players Lithograph was limited to 250 individually numbered pieces - the first 50 going directly to the players, 100 "NBA Edition," 50 "Legends Edition," and 50 Field of Dreams Edition - this print is numbered NBA 33/100. This print presents NM to MT and is problem free; the frame has not fared as well, revealing a good deal of chipping on the gold portions of both the outside and inner frames. Full LOA from PSA/DNA. Full LOA from James Spence Authentication.

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