Michael Jordan’s iconic first Nike trainers sell for $1.5m

The trainers have set a record for the most expensive game-worn footwear

Sravasti Dasgupta
Monday 25 October 2021 16:13
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<p>The iconic pair bought by collector Nick Fiorella on Sunday night were first worn by Jordan in his first season with the Chicago Bulls in 1984</p>

The iconic pair bought by collector Nick Fiorella on Sunday night were first worn by Jordan in his first season with the Chicago Bulls in 1984

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A pair of red and white trainers worn by US basketball star Michael Jordan have been auctioned off at $1.47m (£1.1m), setting the record for the most expensive game-worn footwear to be auctioned.

In a statement on Twitter, Sotheby’s said: “The most valuable sneakers ever offered at auction – Michael Jordan’s regular season game-worn Nike Air Ships from 1984 – have just sold at $1,472,000 in our luxury sale in Las Vegas.”

While the estimated auction price of the trainers was between $1m-1.5m, the record sale “affirms Jordan as well as Nike Air Ships place at the pinnacle of the sneaker market”, Sotheby’s Brahm Wachter told the BBC.

The Air Ships, designed by Peter Moore and popularised by Jordan, pre-date the Air Jordan. Both became a sensation on and off court as they moved from being basketball gear to street fashion.

The iconic pair bought by collector Nick Fiorella on Sunday night were first worn by Jordan in his first season with the Chicago Bulls in 1984 – the same year he started his collaboration with Nike to create his own line of shoes and clothes.

He continued to wear the pair in 1985, before shifting to a modified version in 1986, reported AFP.

While the Air Ships were sold at the highest price for any game-worn shoes, they are not the most expensive pair of trainers.

Rapper Kanye West’s Nike Air Yeezy 1 prototype was sold for a record $1.8m (£1.3m) at a private sale in April.

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