Magic Johnson Cards and Memorabilia Guide

Magic Johnson

Date of Birth: 8/14/1959
Rookie Card Year: 1980-81
Investment Rating: 7.5


Earvin "Magic" Johnson was one of the first true basketball superstars. His college and pro battles with Larry Bird combined with his individual and team success with the "Showtime" era of Los Angeles Lakers, made him one of the most popular basketball players of the last few decades. Because of this, Magic Johnson cards and memorabilia are among the top retired player options for basketball collectors.

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Magic Johnson played college basketball for Michigan State and quickly developed a fierce rivalry with Larry Bird and Indiana State. Johnson would take MSU to the NCAA title in 1979 and declared for the draft soon after. The Los Angeles Lakers made him the first overall pick in the 1979 NBA Draft.

While the effects of HIV robbed him of the end of his career, Johnson still put up Hall of Fame numbers. He was a 12-time All-Star, two-time All-Star MVP, three-time regular season MVP, five-time NBA Champion and three time NBA Finals MVP. He also won a gold medal with the original Dream Team at the 1992 Summer Olympics.

Although Johnson retired following the 1990-91 season, he returned to the Lakers, first as a coach at the end of  the 1993-94 season, and then as a player for a portion of the 1995-96 season. He retired for good after the Lakers were bounced in the first round of the playoffs. Magic Johnson was named a member of the 50th NBA Anniversary All-Time Team and was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002.

In terms of card collecting, Magic Johnson ranks high on the list of former players. His instant recognition and continued affiliation with the NBA, as well as his ownership role with the Los Angeles Dodgers, has kept him in the forefront.

Magic Johnson Cards

1980-81 Topps Basketball #6 - #34 Larry Bird RC, #174 Julius Erving, Magic Johnson RC #139

One of the top rookie cards of in the history of basketball collecting, the 1980-81 Topps rookie card also happens to include the rookie card for Larry Bird, with Julius Erving in the middle. This trio provides a Hall of Fame experience that few rookie cards can match.

Collectors are not just limited to this pricey rookie card, as three other multi-player cards found in 1980-81 Topps feature Magic Johnson, including:

The final card is the most appealing, as it features two-thirds of the main rookie and includes the same images and spots for Johnson and Julius Erving.


Top eBay Listings

2006 Exquisite Collection Limited Logos Magic Johnson AUTO JERSEY 50 (PWCC)

2007 SP Game Used Significant Numbers Magic Johnson 3-CLR PATCH 35 #MA (PWCC)

*RARE* MAGIC JOHNSON 1992 Hoops Commemorative Auto Signed Insert PSA DNA 9


2008 Upper Deck Auto Focus Magic Johnson Julius Erving Larry Bird AUTO 10(PWCC)

2009 Bowman '48 Autographs Magic Johnson AUTO #48AMJ BGS 9 MINT (PWCC)

2009 Bowman '48 Autographs Magic Johnson AUTO #48AMJ BGS 9.5 GEM MINT (PWCC)

2015-16 Panini Black Gold Signatures Magic Johnson Auto 59 60 W7

2014 Magic Johnson Panini Preferred #454 NP RED AUTO LA LAKERS BGS 9.5 #14 20

2013 Preferred Silhouettes Magic Johnson AUTO 3-CLR JERSEY 8 #227 (PWCC)

2013 Panini Spectra Black Printing Plates Magic Johnson 1 1 BGS 7.5 NRMT+ (PWCC)

2013 Upper Deck All-Time Greats Magic Johnson AUTO 50 BGS 9.5 GEM MINT (PWCC)

2014 Immaculate Collection Premium Patch Gold Magic Johnson JERSEY 10 (PWCC)


#3 25 Magic Johnson 2015 16 National Treasures '92 Dream Team Game Jersey Auto

1986 Fleer Basketball SETBREAK Magic Johnson #53 PSA 9 MINT (PWCC)
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Autograph Guide

Magic Johnson Autographed Memorabilia Buying Guide

Below you will find an example of what Magic Johnson's authentic signature looks like. This can be used as a first point of reference for determining the legitimacy of autograph memorabilia, but is not a substitute for having your items authenticated by a well-respected professional autograph authentication company. Reputable authentication companies include JSA, PSA, Panini Authentic and Mounted Memories, to name a few.

Magic Johnson Cut Signature Exemplar

Magic Johnson Key Signature Attributes: An authentic Magic Johnson signature autograph will exhibit several distinguishing characteristics, depending on when in his career the item was signed. Other characteristics that play into his signature style are the particular item and venue. Look for the following signature features:

  1. The signature beings with a large "M" that transitions into a third hump with a line to showcase an uppercase "A".
  2. The line from the "A" continues to form the "G", although it more resembles a large uppercase "P".
  3. From there, the signature reverts to cursive, finishing with a lowercase "i-c". The "i" is not dotted.
  4. The last name is greatly shortened and can resemble a large cursive "U" or "J-e".

Magic Johnson Signed Basketball Pricing:

Active Listings for Magic Johnson Signed Basketballs

Magic Johnson Signed Jersey Pricing:

Active Listings for Magic Johnson Signed Jerseys

Magic Johnson Signed Photograph Pricing:

Active Listings for Magic Johnson Signed Photographs

Top eBay Listings

*RARE* MAGIC JOHNSON 1992 Hoops Commemorative Auto Signed Insert PSA DNA 9

Magic Johnson LA Lakers Autographed Signed 8x10 Photo JSA L71378


Magic Johnson Los Angele Lakers 1990 Hoops All-Star Signed AUTOGRAPH PSA DNA

Magic Johnson Los Angele Lakers 1990 Hoops Signed AUTOGRAPH PSA DNA

Signed Magic Johnson Jersey w Showtime ITP PSA DNA Certified

Magic Johnson Signed Custom Jersey w HOF 02 PSA DNA Certified

Magic Johnson Signed Jersey w Showtime ITP PSA DNA Certified
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More Info
Be sure to checkout our other Magic Johnson collecting guides and articles:

For general information and player statistics visit:

 |  E-Mail Author | 
Trey Treutel is an Ole Miss grad and a lifelong sports fanatic. He is a huge fan of the NBA and NFL, as well as soccer, college basketball and college football. As a kid, he collected football and basketball cards. In more recent years he started collecting basketball cards again on a whim and has since expanded to other sports and entertainment options. Find Trey on Twitter at @datreute or Google+.

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