From books to rugs to Old West memorabilia and beyond, the NBA’s all-time leading scorer has always been a collector.
So why is Kareem Abdul-Jabbar selling the best items from his basketball career, including his championship rings, game-worn jerseys and major awards?
He says it’s not because he needs the money but rather a desire to help kids.
So far, collectors have responded to the tune of over $811,000 in bids over the first several days of the auction, which won’t end until October 27. With the buyer’s premium factored in, nearly $1 million has been committed thus far.
A prolific writer, Abdul-Jabbar has now detailed his decision to auction dozens of items through Goldin Auctions in a blog post on the company’s website. He says most of the proceeds will go toward funding his ‘Camp Skyhook’ program, which sends youngsters from economically challenged schools to five days in the Angeles National Forest where they can “experience the wonders of nature and learn the basics about science, technology, and engineering.” The children spend five days and four nights in the outdoors.
“Our hope is not just to get them out of the city to commune with the outdoors,” he wrote, “but to stimulate an interest in the sciences that might lead them to fulfilling careers.”
Goldin’s ‘October Legends’ auction has over 2,900 items in all including one of the best known examples of Babe Ruth’s 1916 M101-5 rookie card. The SGC 5.5 example is one of only two graded at that level by the company and had a high bid of $175,000 as of Sunday.