A mint condition Wayne Gretzky rookie card that was put up for auction this week has set the record for the most-expensive hockey card in the world.
The cart, a gem mint condition 1979 O-Pee-Chee Gretzky rookie card, was up for online auction through Heritage Auctions and sold for $1.29-million.
The image of The Great One on the card stems from a Nov. 9, 1978 WHA game where the Oilers paid visit to the New England Whalers — a game that marked the second time that Gretzky faced off against Gordie Howe.
“Baseball has a much longer history and has a lion’s of the sports collectors market as a whole, but hockey has its place, and Gretzky definitely goes on the Mount Rushmore of greatest of all time,” Chris Ivy of Heritage Auctions told The Canadian Press. “He’s right up there with Babe Ruth and Michael Jordan.
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“We’re very excited and glad it got to (almost) $1.3 million. It very easily could have sold for $1.1 million and it just as easily could have sold for $1.6 million. It comes down to who’s willing to cut the check. It set a record … one more record to add to Wayne Gretzky’s tally.
“He deserves to have the highest-selling hockey card of all time.”
The card is reportedly one-of-two gem mint 10 rookie Gretzky cards and this same one sold for $465,000 in August 2016, which at the time was the record holder.
On Twitter: @zjlaing