So with no sports going on right now it seems like everybody has been tuned in to this whole Last Dance documentary. Every single person I've talked to has absolutely loved this thing. I haven't seen any of it at all. I just don't have enough time to get to it, but I've heard some great reviews about this thing and it is absolutely the best thing on TV right now from everybody I've talked to.
So with that being said, Michael Jordan is already an iconic athlete worldwide. His autograph memorabilia and trading cards and all that kind of stuff has already been high, but it is has gone up and up and up with this last dance, and with so many new collectors and new people taking interest in Michael Jordan autographed stuff, it got me thinking. What would be the top 5 autographed items? Just autograph items, no Fleer rookie cards, although those are absolutely 100% cool. So just the top 5 autographed items that you need to have in your collection.
Now, before we get started here, let's talk about authenticity when it comes to Michael Jordan. I'm gonna try to keep this rant really short. Michael Jordan has always signed with Upper Deck the trading card company, Upper Deck Authenticated. All of his legitimate autographs are gonna be basically coming from Upper Deck. Yes there are third-party authenticated autographs with JSA, PSA, and Beckett, but for any sit-down paid autograph signing they all come with Upper Deck authentication. No other company. Now with that being said, there are a couple issues and some things that you need to be aware before you buy your Michael Jordan autographed item.
Number one. Upper Deck lost their online database prior to 2002, so if you have a Jordan item that was signed prior to 2002, you need to email them a picture of your item and your certificate and all that kind of stuff and then they somehow verify it. That's to me really sketchy, so I prefer not to do that. If you are gonna do that make sure that you have that autograph authenticated by either JSA, PSA, or Beckett. So get somebody else and some other experts’ eyes on that item, unless you are an absolute badass when it comes to Michael Jordan's autographs, that's the way to do it. Make sure you have somebody else take a look at it.
Second thing is you can also buy something that's authenticated JSA, PSA, or Beckett already that doesn't come with a product authentication that's probably a signature that's been signed at like a golf event or something like that. Those are perfectly fine as well. So you can feel pretty good about buying stuff like that.
The third and probably the most important. The best way but also the most expensive way is just to buy directly from Upper Deck. Now Upper Deck just recently raised their prices on Michael Jordan. I think $8,000 on jerseys now, so if you go to their website and try to buy something like that it's gonna be super expensive, so people are trying to find deals everywhere. I totally get that, but please don't be a dummy and buy some China Jersey off of Facebook marketplace. It's not real. Jordan never signed Chinese jerseys for Upper Deck. So don't do that. Don't be a dummy. Do a little bit of research, follow a couple of these steps here, make sure you have other people take a look at the autograph. If you're unsure about it take your time. It's a big investment.
So that being said let's get into the list here. The top five autographed items you need to have in your collection, and number five is a Michael Jordan autographed baseball. What? Yeah, of course, we can't talk about Michael Jordan's career without talking about his career in baseball. Of course he left the Chicago Bulls to go play baseball for the White Sox. I actually did sell a helmet and a jersey of his way back in the day of the White Sox, and those are absolutely really cool.
Autographed baseballs are really cool because they're smaller in size and they're actually probably one of the more affordable Jordan autographs. Last I checked some baseballs on Upper Deck were about $1,000 or so. So not terrible. They're on these weird old Wilson baseballs. They’re not on any MLB current balls, so if you do see something like that, that's probably an in-person signature or something to be leery about. Jordan autographed baseballs are way cool. Everybody that sees that in your collection is gonna be like, “I remember when Jordan was playing baseball!” and all that kind of stuff, so it's a really cool and unique item to have in your collection.
Number four is the 8 X 10, or really any size you want to do, of the 1988 Gatorade Slam Dunk contest. This is the absolute iconic image for Jordan where he took off from just about the free-throw line. I don't think he ever took off from the free-throw line, it was probably a little bit short of that there, but still an iconic image. 1988 Gatorade Slam Dunk. You can get these in different sizes, 8 X 10 and 16 X 20. The 8 X 10 framed, I think I last saw was about $1,500 or so. So a very good price for an iconic image. I mean not just a Jordan iconic image, but an NBA and the name overall, sports iconic image. You put that up in your wall, people know about that, so you got to have something like that in your collection.
Number three is sometimes an often overlooked item for Jordan but just your standard autographed basketball. These are great because they allow for really a nice large signature. There's a couple different balls that Jordan has signed. They're mainly the Wilson and then the Spalding. The Spalding one tends to kind of bring a little bit more money for Jordan’s autograph on a Spalding ball, but these are really cool, easy to display, and obviously getting an autograph basketball from a basketball player makes total sense.
Again it allows for a really nice large signature and it's probably the cheapest premium item that you can probably find. Premium item being like basketballs, shoes, and jerseys and all that kind of stuff. So last I checked they were about $2,500 or so for these basketballs.
Number two, and this one could be the most expensive items or one of the cheaper items depending on which one you get, but you got to have an autographed pair of shoes. I mean Jordan was known, or is still is known, for shoes. So you either get a pair or you get a single shoe, it really depends on what your budget is. Last I checked these they were running for about $2,500 to $13,000 for non-game use shoe pairs with Upper Deck authentication. Imagine having a pair like this in your collection. I mean just absolutely so cool. You got to have something like this.
I suggest maybe starting off with like a single signed shoe. It would be great to have the pair, that is gonna be the best way to go, but again I understand people have budget concerns about getting autographed pair of shoes for Michael Jordan. I mean that's what he's known for besides basketball, and it just makes sense.
Lastly, the number one item that you need to have in your collection. I think you kind of know where I'm going with this one. It is the number 23 Red Chicago Bulls Jersey. Now there are different variations of this that you can do with inscriptions and limited edition pieces, but I'm just talking about just your standard number 23 Jersey, unframed. It looks like they're going for about $5,400 - $5,500 right now. I've seen up to $8,000. Of course you can get it from Upper Deck’s website. If you are gonna go this route and get the Jersey, which is my number one item that you should have in your collection, my advice to you is just buy from Upper Deck. Just bite the bullet. Get the best quality item that is 100% authentic and keep that receipt with it so if you go to sell that Jersey down the line you've got the receipt with that thing. Oh man your authenticity is golden. You've got an iconic item there and you've got all the paperwork with it. I mean these things are gonna be going up in value, Jordan stuff is not going down so getting that Red Bulls Jersey is the way to go.
So I hope you guys like this list. That's my top 5 Jordan autographed items that you should have in your collection!
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