NBA All-Star Game Programs Offer History, Value

Game programs are one of the biggest bargains in sports memorabilia.  The vast majority are budget priced, even those from many years ago.  None may offer as much value in a publication, though, as NBA All-Star Game programs.

The league's greatest players convene but once a year.  The 1950s gave us George Mikan, and later Bill Russell and Bob Cousy.  The '60s had Wilt and Oscar.  The '70s brought us Pistol Pete, Clyde the Glide and the'80s launched the Jordan/Bird/Magic era.  The NBA All-Star Game is a showcase for greatness.  The one constant from a collecting standpoint have been the ticket stubs and programs that attendees brought home.

Keep in mind that the number of fans in attendance pales in comparison to baseball's annual Midsummer Classic.  While 45 or 50,000 may see baseball's All-Star Game, NBA arenas usually didn't seat that many back in the early days.  Most times, the NBA All-Star Game is played in front of less than 20,000.  At times through history, attendance was much less than that.  That means there aren't that many surviving programs left from those early days.  In later years, the print run has increased a bit, keeping values lower--but there still aren't that many around.  In our humble opinion, the program is better than a trading card which has just a front and a back.  The program tells a story.  Who played.  Where the game was.  The history.  Ads that take us back in time.  If the program is scored, it might even tell the story of the game.

The first NBA All-Star Game was played in 1951.  It's a rare one, but we do see 1952 and '53 programs on eBay sometimes.  A '52, signed by Cousy and Mikan recently sold for $610.  Two '53 programs from the game in Fort Wayne (that's where the Pistons played prior to moving to Detroit) sold for $867 and $1,052 a week apart.

The '59 program in Detroit?  Worth about $300-400.  The 1965 NBA All-Star game was in St. Louis, home of the Hawks.  Three programs from that game sold in a short period of time for $200-250.

The 1968 game at the new Madison Square Garden had great attendance--over 18,000---and the program sold for a few bucks that day now sells for around $100-130.

Only about 12,000 attended the 1969 game, but that program is worth a little less.

The real bargains in NBA All-Star programs are in the '70s and '80s.  The' 73, '76 and '77 editions are very common.  Too many were made and you can find them for less than $50, sometimes much less.  They're still cool, even if they'll not likely gain a lot of value in the coming years.

Even programs from Michael Jordan's first NBA All-Star game or those from the early Bird/Magic years are cheap...less than $20 for most.  It's a great niche to start collecting.  You can build quite a collection of little conversation pieces for not that much money.

1977 NBA All-Star game program with Leroy Neiman cover
1977 NBA All-Star game program with Leroy Neiman cover
$79.99
Time Remaining: 1h 54m
Buy It Now for only: $79.99
2004 NBA ALL STAR GAME COMMEMORATIVE PROGRAM
2004 NBA ALL STAR GAME COMMEMORATIVE PROGRAM
$12.99
Time Remaining: 3h 15m
Buy It Now for only: $16.99
1975 25th Annual NBA All Star Game, basketball program, Phoenix, Ex. scored
1975 25th Annual NBA All Star Game, basketball program, Phoenix, Ex. scored
$36.99
Time Remaining: 4h 2m
Buy It Now for only: $36.99
1989 NBA All Star Game Program Houston Texas Michael Jordan Ex Condition
1989 NBA All Star Game Program Houston Texas Michael Jordan Ex Condition
$9.99
Time Remaining: 4h 49m
2004 NBA ALL Star COMMEMORATIVE PROGRAM LOS ANGELES BASKETBALL SOUVENIR BROCHURE
2004 NBA ALL Star COMMEMORATIVE PROGRAM LOS ANGELES BASKETBALL SOUVENIR BROCHURE
$7.77
Time Remaining: 5h 9m
Buy It Now for only: $11.11
1993 NBA **ALL STAR** GAME OFFICIAL PROGRAM     SALT LAKE DELTA CENTER
1993 NBA **ALL STAR** GAME OFFICIAL PROGRAM SALT LAKE DELTA CENTER
$4.00
Time Remaining: 6h 48m
1992 NBA All Star Basketball Game Program Magazine Orlando Florida Dream Team
1992 NBA All Star Basketball Game Program Magazine Orlando Florida Dream Team
$35.75
Time Remaining: 7h 31m
Buy It Now for only: $35.75
Bob Cousy Autographed 1958 NBA All-Star Tour Program
Bob Cousy Autographed 1958 NBA All-Star Tour Program
$135.00
Time Remaining: 7h 39m
Buy It Now for only: $199.00
1970 NBA All-Star Game Program with 3 Autographs (Authenticated)
1970 NBA All-Star Game Program with 3 Autographs (Authenticated)
$75.00
Time Remaining: 10h 35m
1972 NBA All-Star Game Program Autographed by John Havlicek and Jerry West
1972 NBA All-Star Game Program Autographed by John Havlicek and Jerry West
$68.95
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1979 NBA All Star Game Program Autographed by Campy Russell
1979 NBA All Star Game Program Autographed by Campy Russell
$18.00
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1969 NBA All Star Game Program with 3 Autographs
1969 NBA All Star Game Program with 3 Autographs
$169.00
Time Remaining: 10h 43m

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Comments

2 Comments on "NBA All-Star Game Programs Offer History, Value"

  1. john on Sat, 24th Nov 2012 1:15 am 

    what would my 1971 NBA all star program be worth in ex. condition ? thanks

  2. admin on Sat, 24th Nov 2012 4:30 am 

    I would guess around $100-125.

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