The shoes from Michael Jordan's rookie season sold for a record $1.47 million
The pair of Nike Air Ships that Michael Jordan wore during his first season with the Chicago Bulls sold for nearly $1.5 million at an auction.
The shoes were estimated to sell between $1 million to 1.5 million before the auction. The shoes were sold to collector Nick Fiorella for $1.47 million.
The Nike Air Ship shoes were what Jordan played in before Nike gave him his own line of clothing and shoes, which would later become a household brand name and make Jordan a billionaire. It was the first time Nike ever collaborated with a player in such a way.
They were sold in Las Vegas during Sotheby's "Icons of Excellence & Haute Luxury" auction.
Jordan wore the shoes that were auctioned on Sunday during his 5th NBA game on Nov. 1, 1984, when the Chicago Bulls suffered a loss against the Denver Nuggets, 113-129.
#AuctionUpdate The most valuable sneakers ever offered at auction—Michael Jordan's regular season game-worn Nike Air Ships from 1984—have just sold at $1,472,000 in our luxury sale in Las Vegas. #SothebysxMGM pic.twitter.com/OlxvZ1ETML— Sotheby's (@Sothebys) October 24, 2021
Jordan gave the size 13 shoes to the Denver Nuggets ball boy, Tommie Tim III Lewis, after the game, and they have been kept in "good overall condition" — according to Sotheby's — ever since.
The auction broke the previous record of a pair of Nike Air Jordan 1s selling for $560,000 dollars last year.
Tien Le is an intern on NPR's News Desk.
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