A pair of Nikes worn by Michael Jordan in 1984 sold for nearly $1.5 million over the weekend.
The red-and-white Nike Air Ships were worn by Jordan on Nov. 1, 1984, his fifth NBA game. The pair of kicks came autographed with just a touch of wear.
The size 13s Nikes, the first of the brand Jordan’s feet ever stepped in, were expected to go for as much as $1.5 million.
Nevertheless, the winning bid — $1.47 million — was still a record-breaker, and the Nikes are the first shoes to sell for more than $1 million at an auction.
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Jordan’s Air Ships are also believed to be the second most valuable pair of shoes ever, behind only the Nike Air Yeezy 1 prototypes Kanye West wore at the 2008 Grammys. Those came with a price tag of $1.8 million.
The winning bid for Jordan’s footwear came from Nick Fiorella, a sports memorabilia collector, auction house Sotheby’s said in a statement.
“To present such a groundbreaking and important pair of sneakers at this special auction in Las Vegas further solidifies the strength and broad reach of the sneaker collecting community,” Brahm Wachter, Head of Sotheby’s streetwear and modern collectables, said in a statement.
The “record-breaking” sale affirmed what Sotheby’s already knew, that Jordan and the Air Jordan franchise is at the “pinnacle of the sneaker market.”
Jordan originally gave the 1984 sneakers to Denver Nuggets ball boy, Tommie Lewis, who kept them in “excellent” condition until this year, said Sotheby’s.
Nike Air Ships were banned by the NBA shortly after Jordan debuted them because the league claimed they violated its uniform policy.