The jersey that LeBron James wore until it ripped during the opening game of the NBA season earlier this month has sold at auction for $45,000. The home white Nike shirt became the subject of much discussion when it split down the middle of the back after it was grabbed by Jaylen Brown of the Celtics.
The rip occurred on a night when the NBA was showing off the new Nike-made jerseys in front of a national TV audience. After other players began experiencing similar issues, Nike acknowledged it would investigate why the jerseys were tearing so easily.
— Sporting News NBA (@sn_nba) October 19, 2017
James tallied 29 points, grabbed 16 rebounds and dished out nine assists while wearing the size 48 jersey that includes a four-inch custom lengthening.
The jersey received 105 bids over the ten days of the sale, conducted by NBA Auctions and MeiGray. While the number was strong, it was nowhere near the record price for a James jersey. One of LeBron’s jerseys from the 2017 NBA Finals sold for $92,020 last June.
The ripped jerseys continue to be an issue for the league and Nike, however.
Draymond Green needs a new jersey pic.twitter.com/eYR8EKr7so
— SB Nation GIF (@SBNationGIF) October 28, 2017
Dwyane Wade’s Cavs jersey sold for $20,236 in the Opening Night auction while the shirt worn by Golden State Warriors star Steph Curry that same evening sold for $24,180.
Proceeds from sales of the jerseys worn by the four teams that played on Opening Night will go toward One America Appeal, which is raising money for hurricane relief efforts.
The Warriors also sold their shooting shirts from Opening Night in a charity auction to benefit victims of the recent Northern California wildfires.
The gold-themed shirts were designed to honor the defending NBA champs during their championship ring ceremony. Top sellers were those worn and later autographed by Curry and Draymond Green. Each sold for over $14,000 in the auction.