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Michael Jordan’s 1998 NBA Finals jersey sells for record $10.1M | Basketball News

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Famed US basketball player Michael Jordan’s Game 1 jersey from the 1998 NBA Finals has been sold at auction for $10.1m – a record for any game-worn sports memorabilia, auction house Sotheby’s has announced.

The red, number-23 jersey from Jordan’s “Last Dance” season with the Chicago Bulls fetched 20 separate bids, Sotheby’s said in a press release on Thursday, which drove the worth to double its $5m estimate.

The sale also sets a recent record for a basketball jersey sold at auction, and the jersey is the most respected item of Jordan memorabilia ever to be sold.

“The historic jersey was worn during what’s arguably essentially the most celebrated season of Jordan’s legendary and storied profession, when the superstar cemented his legacy as the best basketball player of all time,” Sotheby’s said.

In line with the auction house, the jersey is one in every of just two of Jordan’s NBA Finals jerseys to ever appear at auction.

A record-breaking day. Michael Jordan’s iconic 1998 NBA Finals ‘The Last Dance’ jersey has sold for $10.1 million, setting records for a basketball jersey, any game-worn sports memorabilia, and most respected #MichaelJordan item ever sold at auction. pic.twitter.com/7t8G98N5pW

— Sotheby’s (@Sothebys) September 15, 2022

Interest in Jordan’s 1998 season was sparked yet again after the 2020 release of an ESPN/Netflix documentary titled, The Last Dance, which detailed the Chicago Bulls’ efforts to attain an unprecedented sixth NBA championship in eight seasons.

The 1998 NBA Finals, which saw the Bulls tackle the Utah Jazz, led by Karl Malone and John Stockton, was essentially the most viewed NBA finals series ever.

Additionally it is considered a testament to Jordan as a competitor, a sportsman and a teammate.

“Yet again, today’s record-breaking result, with an astounding 20 bids, solidifies Michael Jordan because the undisputed GOAT [Greatest of All Time], proving his name and incomparable legacy is just as relevant because it was nearly 25 years ago,” Brahm Wachter, Sotheby’s head of streetwear and modern collectables, said in a press release.

Game 1

On June 3, 1998, the Chicago Bulls arrived in Utah for Game 1 of the NBA Finals.

The house crowd was hostile to the team, but because the ESPN/Netflix documentary showed, Jordan was seemingly unfazed by the pressure. There may be a now-famous scene of him grooving on the Bulls bus to R&B singer Kenny Lattimore.

Michael Jordan’s 1998 NBA Finals Game 1 jersey from the famed ‘Last Dance’ season sold for $10.1m [Courtesy of Sotheby’s]

While the Bulls lost by three points in Game 1, Jordan played 45 minutes – essentially the most of any game within the finals, Sotheby’s said. He also registered 33 points to assist send the sport into extra time.

That season, the Bulls went on to win their sixth NBA Championship and Jordan secured his sixth NBA Finals MVP Award.

The previous record for any item of Jordan’s sports memorabilia was an autographed relic card from 1997-1998, which sold for $2.7m, in keeping with Sotheby’s.

Kobe Bryant’s game-worn and autographed jersey from the 1996-1997 season, which sold for $3.7m, had previously held the record for a basketball jersey.

Prior to Jordan’s jersey being sold for $10.1m on Thursday, the previous record for any game-worn sports memorabilia was set by Diego Maradona’s “Hand of God” jersey, which fetched $9.3m earlier this 12 months, Sotheby’s said.

Lately, the auction house has expanded into the sneaker and sports memorabilia space.

Sotheby’s currently holds the record for the most respected sneakers sold at auction, with Michael Jordan’s earliest known regular season game-worn Nikes selling for $1.5m last 12 months.

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