The jersey LeBron James donned on the cover of the February 18, 2002 issue of Sports Illustrated that introduced the high school basketball phenom to the world, is now up for auction with a pre-sale estimate of at least $300,000.
The St. Vincent/St. Mary jersey was worn by James for his photo shoot with Sports Illustrated on February 3, 2002 and then later that night in the Akron area school’s 74 – 49 victory against the Archbishop Hoban Knights in which he posted 32 points and seven rebounds. It was a typical performance for the junior who was averaging 30.4 points, 9.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists.
According to Goldin Auctions, which is offering the jersey in its newly launched October Legends sale, “the jersey shows good toning overall with some scuffing and perspiration stains as would be expected on the gamer.”
The jersey has been authenticated by The MeiGray Group and has a letter from Resolution Photomatching for the game use and photo match.
Worn by James for much of his junior season, the jersey was given to one of his friends who has consigned it to auction. A detailed letter from the consignor, who attended St. Vincent-St. Mary’s, is included.
The auction includes nearly 2,000 lots in all including items consigned by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and soccer legend Michelle Akers along with other pieces associated with Michael Jordan, Muhammad Ali, Lou Gehrig, LeBron James and Michelle Akers, plus the hottest names in collecting right now-Mike Trout and Zion Williamson.
“Our annual October Legends Auction is always one of our most loaded catalogs every year, but this year we’ve reached a new level,” said Ken Goldin, Founder of Goldin Auctions. “No matter what sport or athlete you collect, we have something for everyone.”
Here’s a look at some of the highlights. The complete catalog is available at GoldinAuctions.com.
Lots #241-270 – 2003 Upper Deck Exquisite NBA Collection – 30 lots of the popular and valuable 2003 UD Exquisite issue including James’ autographed patch rookie cards plus others from Michael Jordan, Dwyane Wade, Bill Russell, Kobe Bryant, Julius Erving and others.
Highlights include: Rookie Patch Parallel #78 LeBron James Signed Rookie Card (#16/23); Rookie Patch Parallel BGS NM-MT+ 8.5/BGS 10; Number Pieces #LJ LeBron Signed Rookie Card (#02/23) BGS NM-MT+ 8.5/BGS 10; Scripted Swatch #MJ Michael Jordan (#02/25) BGS GEM MINT 9.5/BGS 9 and Exquisite Quad Patch #DW Wade Rookie Card (#2/3) BGS NM7.
Lots #1-66 – The Kareem Abdul Jabbar Collection – More items from Abdul-Jabbar’s remarkable college career at UCLA are on the block including his letter jacket; 1968 and ’69 UCLA championship rings; 1969 Naismith Trophy; and 1967-68-69 NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player Trophy. A few of the mementos from his NBA career being offered include his personal NBA’s 50 Greatest Player Signed Lithograph and 1984-85 NBA & Sport Magazine’s NBA Finals MVP Trophy. All items are accompanied by an LOA.
Lot #271-312 – The Mickey Mantle PSA Card Collection – A complete PSA-graded collection of 42 Mantle cards, beginning with his 1951 Bowman rookie card and concluding with his final appearance in 1969. Grades range from PSA 5 through PSA 9, with most of the cards in the PSA 8 range.
Lot #115 – 2017 Zion Williamson Game-Used Adidas Nation Jersey Photo Matched to 8/16/2017 (Resolution Photomatching) – Williamson wore the black jersey during the 2017 Adidas Nations tournament for his team, USA Red 2018, and was the MVP of the tournament, which pitted the best high-school players from around the world against each other in Houston. He led the U.S. with 28 points in the championship game, a 108-79 walkover of Asia Pacific. Photo matched by Resolution Photomatching to the August 6, 2017 game.
Lots #313-371 – The Michelle Akers Collection –Memorabilia from the matriarch of modern U.S. Women’s Soccer including gold medals, game-worn jerseys, trophies and other pieces. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Michelle Akers Horse Rescue and Outreach Foundation.
She’s consigned her 1996 Olympic Gold Medal; 1991 and 1999 FIFA World Cup Gold Medals; 1991 FIFA World Cup Golden Boot Award as the tourney’s outstanding player; a 1996 Olympic gold medal match game-worn and signed jersey and shorts; a 2004 National Soccer Hall of Fame Ring; and the ball from career goal 100 signed by teammates from the 1999 squad.
Lot #119 – 1934 Lou Gehrig Signed NY Yankees Contract from his Triple Crown Season (PSA/DNA MINT 9) – The standard Uniform Player’s Contract calls for a $23,000 salary for 1934, the same amount he made the previous year. The contract is dated March 10, 1933, and has been signed on the inside second page with his full name “Henry Louis Gehrig” as well as by Yankees owner Jacob Ruppert and team GM Ed Barrow.
Lot #90 – 1997-98 Michael Jordan Photo-Matched Game-Used and Signed Bulls Black Road Jersey – Jordan’s final season in Chicago, leading the Bulls to a 62-20 regular-season record and their sixth NBA Title in eight years. He led the league in scoring for the final time and earned NBA Finals MVP. The size 50 (Length +4) Nike black mesh road jersey has the Nike tag, surrounded by an NBA Authentics tag on the left and a Bulls logo tag on the right. Jordan signed his name diagonally on the “2” of his “23” in black marker on the back of the jersey.
This jersey comes with full LOAs from the Bulls and The MeiGray Group (152362), who have photo-matched this jersey to the November 7, 1997, game at the Georgia Dome against the Atlanta Hawks, an Upper Deck Authenticated hologram (BAM00015) for Jordan’s signature and a photo match from Resolution Photomatching.
Lots #167 & #168 – Mike Trout Bowman Rookie Cards – A pair of rare Trout cards including a 2009 Bowman Chrome Draft Prospects #BDPP89 Blue Refractor Signed Rookie Card (#064/150) BGS GEM MINT 9.5/10 and a 2009 Bowman Sterling Prospect Black Refractor #MT Mike Trout signed Rookie Card (#21/25) BGS GEM MINT 9.5/BGS 10.
Lot #235 – 1969 Apollo 11 Team Multi-Signed New York Times from 7/21/69 Moon Landing The signatures of the three Apollo 11 astronauts, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins, on the front cover of the July 21, 1969, Late City Edition of The New York Times in what Goldin Auctions calls “one of the most significant and unique items signed by the three men of the mission.”
The headline reads “MEN WALK ON MOON” with the subhead “Astronauts Land on Plain; Collect Rocks, Plant Flag.” It’s accompanied by a second, unsigned copy of the July 21, 1969, edition of The New York Times, along with an original teletype print cut from The Associated Press wire service, dated July 21, with the dateline, “Houston Space Center,” reading “The Apollo astronauts were told tonight that the ‘New York Times’ used the largest headlines in the history of the paper to report the moon landing.”
Lot #126 – 1946 Albert Einstein Signed, Typed Letter Dated (9/24/1946) with Judaism and God Content A signed and typed letter from Einstein to Isaac Hirsch, the president of B’Er Chayim Congregation in Cumberland, Md. Dated September 24, 1946, Einstein has written, “Thank you very much for your kind invitation. Despite being something like a Jewish saint I have been absent from a synagogue so long that I am afraid God would not recognize me and if He would it would be worse.”
The Nobel Prize-winning physicist has signed his name “A. Einstein” in black pen. The letter is typed on an 8½ x 11-inch white sheet that has been folded in thirds and in half. The letter comes with an LOA from Steve Grad of Beckett Authentication.
Bidding will run through October 19 at GoldinAuctions.com.