1986-87 Fleer Basketball

The Legendary Set

Bill Hanzlik’s 1986 Fleer Basketball #43: A Tribute to Denver Nuggets’ Unsung Hero

In the world of basketball card collecting, there’s a unique charm in discovering the unsung heroes of the game. While the 1986 Fleer Basketball set is renowned for its iconic cards, including the Michael Jordan rookie, it also features lesser-known gems like card #43, spotlighting Bill Hanzlik of the Denver Nuggets. Let’s delve into the story of this unheralded player and his memorable 1986 Fleer card.

Bill Hanzlik: The Nuggets’ Unsung Hero

Bill Hanzlik may not have achieved the superstar status of his contemporaries, but his contributions to the Denver Nuggets and the NBA are undeniable. A tenacious defender and a versatile player, Hanzlik was known for his hustle, determination, and commitment to his team. His style of play embodied the spirit of an underdog, a quality that endeared him to fans and teammates alike.

1986 Fleer Basketball Set: A Time Capsule of Basketball Greatness

The 1986 Fleer Basketball set is celebrated as one of the most iconic collections in the hobby, thanks in large part to the inclusion of Michael Jordan’s rookie card. However, this set goes beyond its superstar cards; it captures a transformative era in the NBA when legends like Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, and Charles Barkley were leaving their mark on the league.

Card #43: Bill Hanzlik in the Spotlight

Amidst the star-studded roster of cards in the 1986 Fleer set, card #43 spotlights Bill Hanzlik in action as a member of the Denver Nuggets. The card serves as a visual tribute to his contributions to the team and the league during a time when the Nuggets were striving for recognition.

Hanzlik’s Impact on the Nuggets

Bill Hanzlik’s significance in Denver Nuggets history cannot be understated. He was a steady presence on the court, known for his defensive prowess and ability to make crucial plays. Hanzlik’s leadership and work ethic set an example for his teammates and played a vital role in the Nuggets’ competitiveness.

The Legacy of Card #43

While card #43 may not command the same attention or prices as some of its superstar counterparts, it holds sentimental value for collectors who appreciate the essence of the game beyond the headlines. It symbolizes the dedication and heart that players like Bill Hanzlik brought to the NBA.


Bill Hanzlik’s 1986 Fleer Basketball #43 card is a testament to the spirit of the underappreciated player. In an era dominated by superstar names, Hanzlik’s hustle and commitment shone brightly. Collectors who seek the essence of the game, beyond the spotlight, can find inspiration in the story of this unsung hero. Card #43 reminds us that the NBA’s history is made not only by its legends but also by players like Bill Hanzlik, who, with their determination and grit, help shape the league’s enduring legacy.

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