1985-86 Star Basketball Set

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Fast Facts

Year(s) Issued: 1986
Number Cards:  172
Common Card Value (Good Condition): $5
Estimated Production Run:  2000-5000

Full 1985-86 Star Basketball Checklist


Keys For Collectors

  • Star's third and final full basketball issue, and the smallest of the three base sets 
  • Aside from a Patrick Ewing rookie card, the set does have the same sort of rookie prominence as the prior two years.
  • The set was issued in two series, with the first series card numbered 1 to 94 and the second series 95 to 172
  • This issue is somewhat tarnished due to a later year unauthorized printing - commonly referred to as 'Type 2 Counterfeits'.   Note it was the second series which was counterfeited.
  • While Star's initial production run was initially stated as 2000 sets, Beckett notes that Star produced a few thousand more of the popular teams (source)
  • Cards were issued in the traditional poly bags

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1985-86 Star Basketball - Summary 

Star's last final base issue, and one that is anchored by the rookie card of Patrick Ewing and a second year Michael Jordan card.  The only recognizable rookie card, aside from Ewing is Kevin Willis, thus a bit of a disappointing rookie card class. 


The design is the same for the 85-86 set, with the traditional front border color matching the player's team colors. 

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An authentic Jordan #117 1985-86 Star Card. 

Note the backs of the cards are also quite similar to previous issues, with a white back, and print representative of the front card color - as we see with the Jordan card below, which has red text.  

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The back of an authentic #117 Star Michael Jordan card. 

This set, more than others, is marked by even more Star controversy.  Based on our conversations with Steve Taft, over at All Vintage Cards, in the late 1980's a few former Star employees got their hands on some factory rejects and released them into the hobby.  These were not authorized for issuance nor approved by Robert Levin, Star's founder. 


These cards, commonly known as 'Type II Counterfeits', included a 100 card sheet from the 1985-1986 Star issue (2nd Series cards from 95 to 172).  Thus, these counterfeit cards include the Patrick Ewing rookie card and the Michael Jordan #117, the two most valuable cards in the set.  


We've produced three guides to help authenticate these cards:


A Guide To Authenticating A 1985-86 Star Ewing #166 Card

A Guide To Authenticating A 1985-86 Star Jordan #117 Card 

How To Identify 1985-86 Star Celtics Type II Counterfeits

If you have any other guides on counterfeits you'd like to see, shoot me an email at help@starbasketballcards.com

1985-86 Star Basketball - Most Valuable Cards

Charles Barkley #2

The second year Star card for Charles Barkley and one of the more valuable Star issues in the set

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Akeem Olajuwon #18

The second year Star card for Akeem Olajuwon, and the last  before his landmark 1986 Fleer issue

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Magic Johnson #28 - SP

The third base issue from Star, and notably a short print issue that is harder to find. 

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Larry Bird #95 (Green and White)

Star printed two variations of the 85-86 Celtics team set--one with white and another with green borders.  White is slightly tougher to find. Watch out for Type II Counterfeit versions of this card

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Clyde Drexler #106

Third year Star card for Clyde Drexler

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Michael Jordan #117

The second year Star card for Michael Jordan and one of the more valuable Star issues across their three years of basketball issues. 

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John Stockton #144

The second year Star card for Michael Jordan and one of the more valuable Star issues across their three years of basketball issues. 

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Patrick Ewing #166 (RC)

The rookie card for Patrick Ewing and the second most valuable in the set behind the Jordan card. Watch out for Type II Counterfeits on this card!

1985-86 Star Basketball - Checklist

Philadelphia 76ers

1 Maurice Cheeks  
2 Charles Barkley 
3 Julius Erving  
4 Clemon Johnson  
5 Bobby Jones  
6 Moses Malone  
7 Sedale Threatt  
8 Andrew Toney  
9 Leon Wood  


Detroit Pistons

10 Isiah Thomas UER
11 Kent Benson
12 Earl Cureton
13 Vinnie Johnson
14 Bill Laimbeer  
15 John Long  
16 Rick Mahorn  
17 Kelly Tripucka 


Houston Rockets

18 Akeem Olajuwon  
19 Allen Leavell  
20 Lewis Lloyd  
21 John Lucas  
22 Rodney McCray  
23 Robert Reid  
24 Ralph Sampson  
25 Mitchell Wiggins  


Los Angeles Lakers
26 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar SP  
27 Michael Cooper SP  
28 Magic Johnson SP  
29 Mitch Kupchak  
30 Maurice Lucas SP  
31 Kurt Rambis SP  
32 Byron Scott SP  
33 James Worthy SP  


Phoenix Suns

34 Larry Nance  
35 Alvan Adams  
36 Walter Davis  
37 James Edwards  
38 Jay Humphries  
39 Charles Pittman  
40 Rick Robey  
41 Mike Sanders  


Atlanta Hawks

42 Dominique Wilkins  
43 Scott Hastings  
44 Eddie Johnson 
45 Cliff Levingston  
46 Tree Rollins  
47 Doc Rivers UER
48 Kevin Willis (RC)
49 Randy Wittman  


Denver Nuggets

50 Alex English
51 Wayne Cooper  
52 T.R. Dunn 
53 Mike Evans  
54 Lafayette Lever 
55 Calvin Natt 
56 Danny Schayes  
57 Elston Turner 


New Jersey Nets

58 Buck Williams  
59 Otis Birdsong 
60 Darwin Cook  
61 Darryl Dawkins 
62 Mike Gminski  
63 Mickey Johnson 
64 Mike O'Koren  
65 Micheal Ray Richardson (note there are two variations)


Seattle SuperSonics

66 Tom Chambers 
67 Gerald Henderson 
68 Tim McCormick 
69 Jack Sikma  
70 Ricky Sobers  
71 Danny Vranes 
72 Al Wood
73 Danny Young (RC)


Sacramento Kings

74 Reggie Theus 
75 Larry Drew 
76 Eddie Johnson 
77 Mark Olberding 
78 LaSalle Thompson 
79 Otis Thorpe
80 Mike Woodson 


Indiana Pacers

81 Clark Kellogg 
82 Quinn Buckner 
83 Vern Fleming 
84 Bill Garnett 
85 Terence Stansbury
86 Steve Stipanovich
87 Herb Williams


Los Angeles Clippers

88 Marques Johnson
89 Michael Cage
90 Franklin Edwards 
91 Cedric Maxwell 
92 Derek Smith 
93 Rory White 
94 Jamaal Wilkes 

Boston Celtics

95 Larry Bird
96 Danny Ainge
97 Dennis Johnson
98 Kevin McHale
99 Robert Parish
100 Jerry Sichting
101 Bill Walton
102 Scott Wedman


** Note that Star released two variations of the Celtics set - one with green borders and one with white borders-although both were part of 'Type II Counterfeit' issues (more on this here) so use caution


Portland Trail Blazers

103 Kiki Vandeweghe
104 Sam Bowie  
105 Kenny Carr 
106 Clyde Drexler 
107 Jerome Kersey (RC)
108 Jim Paxson  
109 Mychal Thompson


Washington Bullets

110 Gus Williams  
111 Darren Daye  
112 Jeff Malone 
113 Tom McMillen  
114 Cliff Robinson UER
115 Dan Roundfield
116 Jeff Ruland


Chicago Bulls

117 Michael Jordan
118 Gene Banks 
119 Dave Corzine 
120 Quintin Dailey 
121 George Gervin
122 Jawann Oldham 
123 Orlando Woolridge

Milwaukee Bucks
124 Terry Cummings
125 Craig Hodges 
126 Alton Lister 
127 Paul Mokeski 
128 Sidney Moncrief
129 Ricky Pierce
130 Paul Pressey

Golden State Warriors
131 Purvis Short
132 Joe Barry Carroll 
133 Lester Conner 
134 Sleepy Floyd 
135 Geoff Huston 
136 Larry Smith  
137 Jerome Whitehead  

Utah Jazz
138 Adrian Dantley 
139 Mitchell Anderson 
140 Thurl Bailey  
141 Mark Eaton 
142 Rickey Green  
143 Darrell Griffith  
144 John Stockton  

San Antonio Spurs
145 Artis Gilmore
146 Marc Iavaroni  
147 Steve Johnson 
148 Mike Mitchell 
149 Johnny Moore 
150 Alvin Robertson 
151 Jon Sundvold  

Cleveland Cavaliers
152 World B. Free
153 John Bagley  
154 Johnny Davis 
155 Roy Hinson 
156 Phil Hubbard 
157 Ben Poquette 
158 Mel Turpin

Dallas Mavericks
159 Rolando Blackman
160 Mark Aguirre 
161 Brad Davis 
162 Dale Ellis 
163 Derek Harper 
164 Sam Perkins 
165 Jay Vincent

New York Knicks
166 Patrick Ewing (RC)
167 Bill Cartwright 
168 Pat Cummings 
169 Ernie Grunfeld 
170 Rory Sparrow 
171 Trent Tucker 
172 Darrell Walker


Most Watched 1985-86 Star Basketball Cards on eBay

Most Watched 1985-86 Star Basketball Cards on eBay

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