Another piece of Kobe Bryant memorabilia could sell for millions at auction.
Bryant’s Los Angeles Lakers No. 8 jersey worn by the late superstar during home games during his 1996-97 rookie season is featured in SCP Auctions’ Spring Premier 2022 set which runs through June 4. It is the only known jersey ever photo-matched from his rookie year, SCP Auctions said in an emailed statement.
The auction site estimates it will sell for between $3 million and $5 million. CEO/President David Kohler confirmed that $5 million mark to TMZ Sports. The jersey is gold with purple trim and features two patches at the bottom for the Lakers and Champion size.
Bryant’s jersey matched the 1997 playoffs
Experts matched the uniform to five games, including two playoff games, when Bryant was a rookie. SPC Auctions said he was matched in Games 3 and 4 of the Western Conference Semifinals with the Utah Jazz on May 8 and 10, 1997.
“All three authenticators conclusively matched the purple and gold threads to these two sets,” SCP Auctions said in a statement.
The Lakers won Game 3 and lost Game 4. They lost the series in five games. It was Bryant’s first-ever playoff appearance. He appeared in 16 playoffs and won five NBA championships.
The jerseys were also photomatched for regular season games on April 13 and 17.
“Most experts agree the jersey was worn at the end of Bryant’s rookie season, as well as in all home playoff games that year,” SCP Auctions said.
A signed Bryant jersey from the same season sold last year for $3.69 million, a record for a basketball jersey. The record for a jersey is the New York Yankees jersey worn by Babe Ruth in 1920 and sold for $4,415,658 in 2012.
Bryant, James, Jordan at auction
The auction also includes Bryant’s work-playing Adidas sneakers from his rookie year. There is also a signed and “highly sought after” PMG autograph Mint 9 card which is the “first and only known example ever offered publicly”, the auction house said.
“He could very well be the only one there, period,” the auction house said. It could very well be the only one that exists, period. “It’s a rarer card than even his unsigned green BGS-rated NM-MT+ PMG that sold for $2 million in February.”
The auction includes an in-game Kobe and Michael Jordan automatic double card, a Tom Brady rookie refractor, a 1986 Fleer Jordan card and a Joe Burrow rookie card. Bryant’s autographed All-Star NBA shoes from 2004, LeBron James’ photomatched Lakers shoes for two games in 2021-22 and a pair of Giannis Antetokounmpo sneakers from the 2020-21 championship campaign are up for auction.