The sneaker world is filled with iconic pairs that tell stories beyond footwear. Among those is the Nike Air Ship Michael Jordan wore in his fifth NBA game. This pair shattered records at auction houses when the pair sold for $1.47 million in 2021. Now, Goldin is putting the sneakers back up for auction.
Before the rise of the Air Jordan 1, before global fame and legendary status, Jordan was a 21-year-old draftee from UNC playing for the Chicago Bulls. With just a single 30-point game to his name, he was a prodigious talent on the brink of greatness. Shortly after signing a monumental endorsement contract with Nike, a young Michael Jordan chose to lace up the Nike Air Ships for his fifth NBA game. The sports landscape would pivot from that moment on. This was the dawn of the Jordan era, and the world saw what was coming.
TJ Lewis, a former ball boy for the Denver Nuggets, paints an evocative picture of that historic evening: “Before the game, both teams would come out for 'shoot-around' to stretch and loosen up. That's when I really had the opportunity to see Michael Jordan on the court that day and knew I was going to ask him for the shoes.” Lewis told Goldin, “I eventually made my way up to him and asked if I could have his shoes after the game. He gave me a look as if he didn't really want to say no, but told me that he couldn't because they were too expensive.” Luckily for TJ, Jordan noticed him in the locker room after the game and offered him the sneakers.
As for the sneaker itself, the pair comes in the PE build for Michael Jordan that features Air Jordan 1 tooling with the Air Ship upper. This differs from the standard Nike Air Ship as it utilizes a different sole unit and is the construction used for the slew of Jordan Air Ships recently hitting shelves.
The auction for the MJ-worn and signed Nike Air Ship via Goldin ended on September 13, 2023. The winning bid for Michael Jordan's game worn Nike Air Ships was $624,000. That's a $850,000 differential from its previous sale back in 2021. The Air Ships aren't the only rare sneakers that we have seen drop in value at auction lately. The Nike Air Yeezy 1 Grammy sample that previously sold for $1.8 million dollars in 2021 just recently sold for $180,000, resulting in a 90% loss. It seems as though the market is starting to correct after the historic highs we saw collectibles sell for during the pandemic. Keep it locked to our Twitter and the Sole Retriever mobile app to stay updated on the latest releases, raffles, news, and more in the sneaker and streetwear world.
Michael Jordan's Jordan Air Ship Auction Closing Prices
- $1.47 Million
Images via Goldin