Counterfeit Alert – 1979-80 OPC Gretzky (Graded?)

The Gretzky rookie card is one of the most counterfeited cards in our hobby. The most common fake is the OPC version. It seems to be quite rare to see a fake Topps version.

There are a number of types of fake Gretzky RCs. One version is printed on a matte stock with no gloss but better printing quality. Other versions are poorly printed and nothing is solid ink on the card front.

It’s bad enough when you run across a fake, no matter what version it is. What is even worse is when one of the basement “grading” companies decides to encapsulate a fake like the version we see here:


I call it a basement grading company because many of these so called companies probably originated in someone’s basement.  It is probably more accurate to call them a slabbing operation and not a grading company. There are still a number of these out there, but not as many as there once was. At one time there were over 40(!) of these low-tier slabbing operations around.

Granted, not every company that has slabbed cards is fraudulent.  But there is a reason why cards such as the Gretzky RC and Jordan RC cannot be sold raw on eBay. They can only be in a PSA, BGS or SGC holder. These three companies are universally considered to be the top-tier companies that are respected and trusted.

Always buy the card and not just the holder. Educate yourself as to what card grading companies are respectable and what commonly faked cards look like. Looking at common 1979-80 OPC common cards with a loupe will give you all you need to b e able to detect fake Gretzky RCs.




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King of this tiny hill.

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