SCP Auctions has brokered the private sale of a uniform worn by Wilt Chamberlain during his 1959-60 rookie season with the Philadelphia Warriors.
The #13 jersey and shorts were authenticated and graded A9 by MEARS and recently photomatched by MeiGray. Among the matching photographs is a color image shot by legendary photographer Neil Leifer for Sports Illustrated on January 5, 1960 that shows Chamberlain leaving the court at Madison Square Garden.
“His rookie uniform, supported by photo documentation that is unprecedented for its era, ranks not only as the finest basketball uniform in the world, but one of the finest uniforms from any sport, period,” stated Dan Imler of SCP Auctions.
An advanced private collector purchased the uniform for an undisclosed purchase price.
After an outstanding college career at Kansas, Chamberlain played one season with the Harlem Globetrotters before joining the NBA. He was awarded to the Warriors in the draft as a “territorial” pick because of his popularity as a Philadelphia high school player in the 1950s.
Wilt was dominant from the beginning, averaging 37.6 points and 27 rebounds per game, both of which obliterated the previous regular season records.
He was named Most Valuable Player and NBA Rookie of the Year during that first season.
The photo of Chamberlain wearing the uniform was taken after a 52-point performance against the Minneapolis Lakers in a contest played at a neutral site, owing to the drawing power of the league’s new star attraction.