A Rare Sample Prototype of Michael Jordan’s Air Jordan Sneakers From 1984 Sells for $325K

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A rare Air Jordan sample prototype from 1984 has sold for $325,085.

Grey Flannel Auctions confirmed the sneakers sold on Sunday night. The sneakers feature the words “Air Jordan” on the upper near the collar rather than the iconic Wings logo that is synonymous with the Air Jordan 1, the first signature shoe of NBA icon Michael Jordan. And according to Grey Flannel Auctions, the left sneaker is a size 13 and the right is size 13.5, which the auction house stated were “custom ordered to Jordan’s unique specifications.”

The sneakers, Grey Flannel Auctions stated, were accompanied by a letter from the consignor, and they were gifted by Nike to a college basketball coach in Portland, Ore., in late 1984. The auction house also confirmed the sneakers “have been meticulously preserved for 40 years and have never been displayed.”

The shoes are in their storied black and red colorway, which was synonymous with the Chicago Bulls team that Jordan played for. At the time, the colorway broke the NBA’s uniform rules, and Nike capitalized on this by censoring his black and red Air Jordan 1 sneakers in TV ads at the time.

Although this is the most recent auction of Jordan’s sneakers, it’s not the only noteworthy sale of 2024. In February, for instance, a collection of six Air Jordan sneakers that were worn during Jordan’s six NBA championship games with the Bulls sold for a record $8 million at Sotheby’s “The One” auction.

About the Author

Peter Verry is the Senior News and Features Editor for Athletic and Outdoor at Footwear News. He oversees coverage of the two fast-paced and ultracompetitive markets, which includes conducting in-depth interviews with industry leaders and writing stories on sneakers and outdoor shoes. He is a lifelong sneaker addict (and shares his newest purchases via @peterverry on Instagram) and spends most of his free time on a trail. He holds an M.A. in journalism from Hofstra University and can be reached at peter.verry@footwearnews.com.

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