A pair of Michael Jordan’s game used and dual signed Converse shoes from the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles sold for $88,644 in SCP Auctions’ 2017 Fall Premier auction that ended early Sunday morning, Nov. 5.
It’s the second time in five months that one of these pairs of shoes has been sold. This time, the pair was not the same one he wore in Team USA’s gold-medal-winning game versus Spain – which sold for a record $190,373 in June – but rather another pair of the same model shoes he wore earlier in the tournament.
The gold-medal-game pair that sold in June was gifted to Basketball Hall of Famer Gail Goodrich’s son, who served as a ball boy. The second pair, which sold in this auction was given to the other ball boy who worked alongside him, and the two ball boys remain good friends to this day. Thus, this pair of special sneakers is the second-to-last pair Jordan wore in amateur competition and represent one of his crowning athletic achievements as the then-21-year-old phenom led Team USA in scoring with a 17.1 points-per-game average during the ’84 Games. Team USA’s 96-65 victory over Spain in the gold medal game, in which Jordan scored a game-high 20 points, would be the last time he was ever seen wearing Converse. A certain four-letter brand based in Oregon would soon take hold of MJ's services and the rest is history.
The white and navy blue trimmed Converse sneakers have a mid-top design using sailcloth canvas and leather material. The navy blue Converse star logo appears on both sides and again on the upper heels. The size “13” and manufacturer codes are stamped on the interior. The original white laces and Converse insoles are present. The shoes are properly tagged and very well-preserved with all structural components perfectly intact. They display appropriate game use with evident heel drag, leather creasing at the ankles and light soiling around the outer heels. Jordan’s pre-NBA era black Sharpie autographs on the outer ankle of each shoe rate 6-7/10 with slight bleeding into the sailcloth panels. Overall, this pair presents aesthetically better than the gold medal pair, which showed more scuffing, more off-white/cream fading, and were not uniformly dual-signed (right shoe was signed on inner ankle).
A detailed letter of provenance from the ball boy, who wishes to remain anonymous to the public, was included. He got the gig from then-Lakers great Gail Goodrich, who oversaw game operations at The Forum for the tournament, and worked nearly every USA game. The fortunate 14-year-old and Goodrich’s son procured their respective pairs straight from Jordan after the Olympic Finals in the locker room where he signed both pairs in person. Goodrich’s son has confirmed the accuracy of this account.
The top lot in the auction was an original 12-foot-tall, 1,800-pound “Rocky” bronze statue which had a final realized price of $403,657. The statue is one of two identical examples created by noted sculptor A. Thomas Schomberg for use in the 1982 film “Rocky III.”
The bronze Rocky statue includes a large, engraved gold plaque on its base that reads in part: “ROCKY BALBOA Created in 1980 for the Movie ’Rocky III’ by A. Thomas Schomberg Edition #2/3.” A third copy of the Rocky Statue was created by Schomberg in 2006 and remains at the Schomberg Studios in Evergreen, Colorado.
A rare 1966-67 UCLA home jersey worn by Basketball Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar when he was still known as Lew Alcindor during the first of his three NCAA title-winning seasons with the Bruins fetched the second highest winning bid, selling for $137,849.
Overall, the auction of 867 different lots brought in more than $3 million including the sale of Wilt Chamberlain’s 1971 Western Conference NBA All-Star game worn jersey for $121,304. Other top auction lots included Mel Ott’s 1948 New York Giants game worn manager’s uniform ($91,138); a 1917-21 Ty Cobb H&B professional model game used bat ($75,320); John Wooden’s circa 1970s UCLA worn coach’s jacket ($58,460); and a 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle #311 card graded EX MT 6 by PSA ($56,590).
The buyers of the items wish to remain anonymous at this time. All prices include a buyer’s premium. Full auction results are available at www.scpauctions.com.