The first round of bidding in the NBA's championship series jersey auction is over with the Celtics beating the Lakers...again.
Paul Pierce may have been the MVP but Kevin Garnett's game-worn NBA Finals jersey was the top choice in the league's online jersey auction.
Round one of the sale, conducted by MeiGray Group, closed Tuesday night with the Garnett home white game jersey worn in game one of the series selling for $31,070. The #5 shirt garnered 113 bids before the cyber hammer fell at 9:24 PM Eastern time. Bidding began during the game on June 5. In all, the auction generated $112,516.77 in winning bids made by fans and collectors around the world.
Pierce's jersey sold for $15,120 and has a bit of history attached to it. It's the same shirt he was wearing when he suffered what at first seemed to be a serious injury. He returned to a raucous ovation later in the game, finishing with 22 points, creating a signature moment early in the series as the Celtics established control. Boston eventually won the title in six games.
In all, 15 Celtics jerseys were sold for a total of $79,398.10. The figure easily outdistanced the final selling prices of the Lakers jerseys, topped by Kobe Bryant's road purple which brought a high bid of $19,040. Total sales of the Lakers jerseys reached $33,118.67.
Jerseys from Game 3 of the series are currently being sold online, with those sales scheduled to end Thursday night.
MeiGray authenticated each jersey, using its security system which includes a special code, tag and number placed on the jerseys prior to the player receiving it for game use.
Meanwhile, Doc Rivers’ Gatorade-soaked shirt and the accompanying Gatorade bucket from Game 6 brought $55,000 to a Boston charity after another online auction conducted by WEEI radio.
The shirt, signed by Rivers and Pierce, even earned a bid from former Patriots head coach Bill Parcells, now coach of the Miami Dolphins. Parcells has an endorsement deal with Gatorade and placed a bid of $20,000 on behalf of the company.
An anonymous bidder pledged $35,000 to win the auction, with Gatorade donating an additional $10,000 and a second anonymous donor did the same. Proceeds from the auction will benefit the Celtics’ charity, The Shamrock Foundation.