A Look at Jack Johnson’s Two T218 Champions Cards
The Hall of Fame boxer has two cards in the multi-sport T218 Champions set — here’s a closer look at both
The T218 Champions set is a popular pre-war multi-sport issue. It doesn’t get quite the notoriety it should because it doesn’t include any baseball players. But it is a popular sport nonetheless and gets quite a bit of attention.
The cards have a clean look with some fantastic artwork. Color pictures, white borders, and a nearly square card give these a really nice look.
All kinds of sports are included in the set but boxing is the key sport is featured. There’s no doubt that the two most desirable cards in the set are those depicting Hall of Fame fighter Jack Johnson.
One of Johnson’s cards is a front-facing view of him while the other one is a classic picture used in other sets featuring him from the side. But which is the more popular?
The side view card of Johnson shown here at the top is the one that most collectors are probably most familiar with — at least the picture on it. The picture was used on other Johnson cards, including those found in modern sets. As of 2020, prices for these cards have risen. In low-grade condition, the card starts around $25.
But the real attraction in the set is his card featuring the front-facing image. That one is rarer and the more valuable of the two. In low-grade condition, it generally starts around $50 or so.
Unlike the side view card, this one has a vertical layout. Another key difference is that, while Johnson is wearing gloves in the horizontal side view card, he is shown without them here.
Why the difference in price? Well much of that is tied to the rarity of each card. A quick glance at PSA’s population report helps show that. While more than 350 of the side view cards have been graded, PSA has only graded about 225 of the front view cards to date.
Both cards are important to the set but it’s his front view card that is a bit more desirable.