Pre-1970 Basketball Cards

When talking about pre-1970s basketball cards, there are really only a few mainstream options available to collectors. The Basketball Association of America did not begin until 1946 and the league did not adopt the NBA moniker until 1949. The first official product issued was 1948 Bowman. Nearly ten years passed before another product came in the form of 1957-58 Topps Basketball. Lastly, 1961-62 Fleer rounded out the period between 1940 and 1969. Regularly-issued basketball cards finally began with the release of 1969-70 Topps Basketball.

Because of the gaps in card production, all of the releases are packed with rookie cards. The most popular rookie options include Bill Russell, George Mikan, Lew Alcindor (Kareem Abdul-Jabbar), Bob Cousy, Elgin Baylor, Wilt Chamberlain, Oscar Robertson, and Jerry West.

Browse Vintage 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s Basketball Card Set Information, Price Comparisons, Hot Auctions and More.

1948 Bowman Basketball Cards

1948 Bowman Basketball Cards

The first set dedicated to professional hoops, 1948 Bowman Basketball is a tough set to complete. The George Mikan rookie card is considered the top card in the release.

1957-58 Topps Basketball Cards

1957-58 Topps Basketball Cards

1957-58 Topps Basketball Card Price Comparisons, Set Details, Checklist, Auction Tracker and Buying Guide.

1961-62 Fleer Basketball Cards

1961-62 Fleer Basketball Cards

1961-62 Fleer Basketball is one of the greatest sets the sport has ever seen. The checklist includes rookie cards of Wilt Chamberlain, Jerry West, Oscar Robertson and more.

1969-70 Topps Basketball Cards

1969-70 Topps Basketball Cards

1969-70 Topps Basketball Card Price Comparisons, Set Details, Checklist, Auction Tracker and Buying Guide.