Collectibles broker Sotheby’s expects Wilt Chamberlain’s 1972 NBA Finals jersey to sell for more than $4 million in an upcoming auction.
Sotheby's calls the jersey Chamberlain wore in the championship-clinching Game 5 victory over the New York Knicks the most valuable piece of his memorabilia ever to appear on the market. The current record sale for a Chamberlain sports memorabilia item is $1.79 million in June 2023. It was for a jersey worn his rookie season with the Philadelphia Warriors.
Online bidding will run from August 28 to September 27.
The 7-foot-1 Chamberlain anchored the team that won the Lakers’ first NBA title. Playing with a broken hand, he had 24 points and 29 rebounds in Game 5 against New York and was named Finals MVP.
Chamberlain died at age 63 in 1999.
“This jersey holds an extraordinarily significant place in the history of Los Angeles, not only adorned by the man many consider to be the greatest player ever to step on the court, but as a relic from one of the greatest franchises in sports history,” said Brahm Wachter, Sotheby’s head of streetwear and modern collectibles.”
The jersey is being offered with a collection depicting it in magazines, newspapers, photographs, trading cards and more. It will be on display for the public at the Sotheby’s Los Angeles gallery from August 2 to August 31.
Chamberlain is a Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer and a four-time NBA most valuable player. He scored 100 points in a game in 1962 — a record that still stands.