by Thomas Urbain
The immense global success of the documentary “The Last Dance” amid the coronavirus lockdown has boosted sales of collectibles related to NBA icon Michael Jordan, some of which are trading in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
“Timing is everything,” says Jordan Geller, a collector who on Sunday will be richer by at least $240,000 thanks to the sale at Sotheby’s of a pair of Air Jordan 1 sneakers — the first model created especially by Nike for Michael Jordan, who made his NBA debut in 1984.
The game-worn pair could set an auction record for sneakers set last year by Nike’s Moon Shoe, a pair of which sold for $437,500.
The various Air Jordans have been popular with collectors for 30 years, along with jerseys and trading cards featuring Jordan — who won six NBA titles with the Chicago Bulls and is widely considered the greatest player in league history.
Many specialists consider Jordan a key figure in creating the market for collectible sneakers, with only non-sports personalities such as Kanye West or Travis Scott able to compete with him today.
But ESPN’s 10-part documentary “The Last Dance” which weaves details of Jordan’s entire career through the narrative of the Bulls’ pursuit of a sixth NBA title, has ramped up interest in all things Jordan.
“I think this is a game-changer,” Chris Ivy, director of sports collectibles at Heritage Auctions, said of the documentary series that was carried globally by Netflix.
Ivy predicted the interest fueled by “The Last Dance” will continue. (AFP)