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Sotheby's to auction rare Michael Jordan memorabilia
2012 Michael Jordan x Converse Commemorative Pack & a Signed Michael Jordan UNC Colors Practice Worn Jersey. Courtesy Sotheby's.

NEW YORK, NY.- Sotheby’s will present James R. Jordan Foundation | Capsule Collection, a charitable online auction featuring Michael Jordan memorabilia on offer from the James R. Jordan Foundation.

Founded and run by Deloris Jordan in honor of her late husband, the James R. Jordan Foundation is a non-profit organization that empowers children and families in underserved communities through access to educational resources and knowledge. JRJF provides a pathway out of poverty by empowering children to achieve their full potential and by leveling the playing field so they can become successful human beings and productive contributors to society. JRJF accomplishes this by creating networks of support for families and communities, motivating youth, and ensuring high-quality academic opportunities for youth in underserved communities.

The works presented in James R. Jordan Foundation | Capsule Collection are sold by the foundation, with full proceeds, including Sotheby’s Buyer’s Premium, benefiting JRJF.

Bidding will be open from 2–12 November, with the full sale contents available for discovery now in our digital catalogue.

Deloris Jordan, President/Founder of the James R. Jordan Foundation, commented: “The James R. Jordan Foundation is a 501(C) (3) nonprofit organization who has been doing vital work both locally and globally in support of children and families in underserved communities for over 20 years. It has been an honor to build educational programming and healthcare initiatives in support of the children and families we serve. We are excited to partner with Sotheby’s to bring additional support to our efforts through this incredible charity auction, featuring a curated grouping of property from the organization’s collection. Our hope now, as it is always, is to make a difference in the lives of all the children and families we serve.”

Brahm Wachter, Sotheby’s Director of eCommerce Development, said: “Sotheby’s is honored and excited to partner with the James R. Jordan Foundation. The property is a tightly curated grouping of items with perhaps the most remarkable provenance collectors could hope for. We are looking forward to raising funds for this very important cause, which will support the efforts of the Foundation both locally and globally. We hope this collection of items, including cufflinks, jerseys, and art excite our global audience towards bidding for this important cause.”

The highlight of the collection is a single lot comprising a 2012 Michael Jordan x Converse Commemorative Pack and a practice-worn Michael Jordan Air Jordan Brand UNC Colors Jersey (estimate $100/110,000). The 2012 commemorative pack features an autographed North Carolina size 40 jersey as well as an autographed pair of the special edition Jordan x Converse Pro Leather sneakers in Michael’s size 13. Additionally included, and not available elsewhere, is Michael Jordan’s practice worn Air Jordan Brand jersey in his alma mater’s signature colors of Carolina blue and white.

In 2012, to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Jordan’s incredible 1982 University of North Carolina (UNC) National Title win, the Jordan Brand and Converse collaborated to create 30 packs of signed UNC style sneakers and jerseys to commemorate the win, with the benefits going to the JRJF. During the 1982 National Title game, while wearing Converse Pro Leather sneakers, Jordan made the go-ahead jumper with just 17 seconds remaining to give coach Dean Smith and the Tar Heels a victory.

The present pack is number 9/30, which has remained in the collection of the JRJF as a reminder of Michael Jordan’s use of the number 9 as a member of the 1984 and 1992 Olympic teams.

The inside of the box reads: “Thirty years ago on college basketball’s grandest stage, a game winning jump shot with seventeen seconds remaining birthed the legend of 23. It was the moment that Mike Jordan became, Michael Jordan. The moment that 23 became more than just a number. And that moment the world was introduced to the greatest to ever play the game.”

The capsule also includes a dazzling pair of Jordan’s 14 Karat White Gold and Diamond Cufflinks customized with his ‘MJ’ initials set with round diamonds (estimate $50/60,000). The square-shaped cufflinks have been worn by Jordan and each measure approximately 1-inch x 1-inch, weighing a total of approximately 5.75 carats together. They come with a beautiful Lester Lampert box, a Chicago based fine jeweler.

Another highlight of the collection is a size 48 Michael Jordan Signed Champion Dream Team Jersey believed to be a 1990s era Champion brand jersey commemorating the 1992 Olympic games and hand-signed by Jordan (estimate $10/15,000).

The 1992 gold medal ‘Dream Team’ is undoubtably the greatest gold medal basketball team that ever graced the Olympic Games. Consisting of Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, David Robinson, Patrick Ewing, Karl Malone, Scottie Pippen, and more, the team is remembered today as perhaps one of the most remarkable assemblage of players to ever play together – in any sport. The team dominated at the Olympics, and to this day is credited with increasing the popularity of basketball throughout the world, creating a lasting impression on global sports culture.

Rounding out the collection is a LeRoy Neiman Michael Jordan screenprint, one of only two screenprints ever produced by Neiman picturing Jordan and the only one that features him exclusively (estimate $5/7,000). Signed by both Jordan and Neiman, the screenprint is numbered 313/320 and is dated to 1991 – the year of Jordan’s first of six NBA Championship wins with the Chicago Bulls.

Best known for his brilliantly colored, stunningly energetic images, Neiman was one of the most popular living sports artists in the United States until his passing in 2012. Over the span of his career he painted such illustrious athletes as Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, Joe Namath, Sandy Koufax, Tiger Woods, and of course as is the case in the present screenprint, Michael Jordan. His work has been displayed in the Baseball, Basketball, Football, Boxing and Tennis Halls of Fame. Additionally, Neiman's paintings and drawings are in more than 40 museums around the world, including the Smithsonian, the Chicago Art Institute and the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, Russia.

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