An American First! NGC Celebrates the 2020 Colorized Basketball Coins

Posted on 8/17/2020

Colorization is a historic innovation in US coinage that NGC is recognizing with a special attribution.

On August 28, the first colorized coins ever produced by the US Mint are being released: a Basketball Hall of Fame 2020-S Colorized Half Dollar and 2020-P Colorized Silver Dollar. Numismatic Guaranty Corporation® (NGC®) is offering a special attribution — First Colorized US Coins — to celebrate this historic innovation in US coinage.

Along with the attribution, the vibrant NGC Basketball Celebration Special Label is offered for free to all submitters. NGC designations, including Tip Off Releases for coins received within the first week of release, and Early Releases and First Releases for coins received within the first 30 days of release, are also available.

The Basketball Hall of Fame 2020-S Colorized Half Dollar and 2020-P Colorized Silver Dollar with the NGC Basketball Celebration Special Label, First Colorized US Coins attribution and Tip Off Releases designation (left) and First Releases designation (right).
Click images to enlarge.

For years, collectors have wondered if the US Mint would ever create a colorized coin. When it was announced that a portion of the 2020 Basketball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coins would be colorized, there was tremendous excitement throughout the hobby.

With both the Half Dollar and Silver Dollar, the colorization is featured on the coins’ common reverse, which was designed by US coin and medal artist Donna Weaver. From the time that the first images of the basketball coins were released, Weaver’s depiction of the perfect shot has been praised for capturing the essence of the game. The addition of color further enhances the design.

The Basketball Hall of Fame 2020-S Colorized Half Dollar showcases the ball, ablaze in the sport’s signature orange shade, passing through the rim, which is a distinctly darker orange. The ball’s ribs are black, and the net is white, creating a dynamic yet harmonious composition that brings the coin to life.

The Basketball Hall of Fame 2020-P Colorized Silver Dollar displays an elegant use of color. Black defines the ribs of the basketball, and the bright-white net adds contrast and dimension. Orange — the color most associated with basketball — delineates the hoop and makes it a focal point, just as it is the target of the game.

“American numismatists have long awaited a colorized coin from the US Mint,” commented Mark Salzberg, NGC Chairman and Grading Finalizer. “NGC is excited to grade these coins and provide innovative display options that highlight this momentous occasion in the hobby’s history.”

In addition to being the first colorized coins ever produced by the US Mint, the basketball coins are only the third US curved coins. These factors — and a limited mintage of just 75,000 coins for each issue — make the colorized basketball coins a must-have for many collectors.

For instructions on how to submit the Basketball Hall of Fame 2020-S Colorized Half Dollar and 2020-P Colorized Silver Dollar to NGC for certification, click here.

NGC’s labels, holders and certification services for the US Mint Basketball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coins are not affiliated with or endorsed by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.



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