“Priceless” and “legendary” will forever co-exist with arguably the greatest of all time to ever step on the hardwood, Michael Jordan—even so during pivotal moments in his 15-season campaign. Since the premiere of The Last Dance in 2020, Gen-Z members like me who vaguely recall the late 90s-early 00s experienced a glimpse of his greatness, noting why Macklemore was so convinced that his pair was going to “make him fly.”
Michael Jordan memorabilia remains a surging commodity with the recent sales of game-worn Nike Air Ships ($1.472 million) during his rookie season and a 1998 NBA Finals jersey ($10.1 million), becoming the most expensive game-worn merchandise ever sold.
Who knows what the next item of the “rare air” collection will be up for grabs? Lowkey hoping for the original unwashed UNC practice shorts featured in the first production of Space Jam to surface (fingers crossed!), though only time will tell.
Kidding aside, many won’t be able to justify or even afford such monumental pieces in sports. Though unlike you and me, it is definitely music to the ears of avid basketball historians and sneaker collectors placing a price on one of the basketball icon’s most coveted pairs—$2.2 million.
Distinguished for their selection of art and luxury, Sotheby’s marketplace auctioned off a signed game-worn pair of the legend, settling at $2,238,000 last April 12, 2023. It was forecasted to sell between $2 million-$4 million, with the 13s settling on the lower end of the scale.
The Air Jordan 13 ‘Bred’ was featured during the second half of Game 2 of the 1998 NBA Finals, where the season’s Most Valuable Player awardee led the Chicago Bulls to a 1-1 stalemate in Salt Lake City, racking 37 points in the process.
Reportedly, a long-time Utah Jazz ball boy received the Last Dance pair, who handled the visitor’s locker room. Subsequently, Jordan wore the season’s model in game 5 of the series before hanging it up for good. He debuted the then unreleased-Air Jordan 14 through games 3, 4, and 6—hence the “last shot” moniker for the black-and-red-draped silhouette with a towering 20-foot field goal over Bryon Russell.
Sotheby’s recently concluded auction recorded to be the most expensive pair of sneakers ever sold, surpassing Kanye West’s unreleased Nike Air Yeezy 1, which premiered during the 50th Annual Grammy Awards in 2008.