Michael Jordan‘s legend is almost unfathomable, made even greater by this year’s ESPN documentary The Last Dance. In the wake of the popular series, MJ memorabilia has skyrocketed in price and desirability this auction season with everything from game-worn sneakers and jerseys to contracts and basketball trading cards bringing in game-winning money!.
Just this week, a photocopy of Michael Jordan’s first-ever contract with the Chicago Bulls sold for a mind-blowing $57,068 at GottaHaveRockAndRoll‘s auction. Dating back to September 12, 1984, the contract outlines MJ’s salary and that he will be playing with the Bulls for a total of seven years. What stuns collectors is that this is a copy – not the original.
Other items riding the MJ – Last Dance wave at auction include:
Robert Edward Auctions has a game-worn, signed Michael Jordan Dream Team Jersey up for bid. Starting price: $25,000. Jordan wore this particular jersey while playing for the 1992 United States men’s national basketball team — widely regarded as the greatest sports team ever assembled — during the Barcelona Olympics. According to the auction report, he donned the top in games against Argentina, Lithuania, and Canada, and in the gold medal game versus Croatia. MJ then signed the white mesh number 9 jersey, “Best Wishes/Michael Jordan.”
A 1986-87 Fleer Basketball Cards case containing Michael Jordan rookie sells for more than $1.7M in an auction conducted by Collect Auctions, August 6, 2020. The auction house described the box as “the Holy Grail of all modern items” and possibly the last one left in the sports-card collecting hobby. The case includes 12 wax boxes with 36 packs to a box.
The only MJ-worn black Chicago Bulls uniform from the 1996-1997 season offered for public sale sold for $288,000 at Goldin Auctions this past spring. Jordan wore the road uniform on April 13, 1997, in a game against the Detroit Pistons, during a season when the Bulls secured their second consecutive NBA title and fifth championship in seven years.
In August, Christie’s auctioned off a pair of game-used Air Ship Nikes, the shoes MJ wore before Jordans in his rookie year, for $350,000. Jordan laced up the Nike Air Ship during the 1984-1985 pre-season and in early games of his rookie year, prior to the release of the Air Jordan 1. The shoe, which was modified specifically for His Airness, featured the upper of the Air Ship and the sole of the Air Jordan 1.
Sotheby’s sold a pair of game-worn Air Jordan 1s that he word during his rookie season (1984-1985). Also signed, the sneakers are recognized as the most valuable ever sold at auction with a gavel-down price of $560,000.
A signed copy of Michael Jordan‘s infamous “I’m back” fax and a signed ticket to the 1982 Finals sold for a combined $49,200 at auction in July. Jordan’s longtime agent, David Falk, sent the fax featuring the two-word return statement in 1995 when MJ ended his first retirement to rejoin the Bulls. The 1982 Final Four is considered Jordan’s star-making moment, as he hit the game-winning shot in the championship game to give North Carolina a win over Georgetown.