Top 10 Most Expensive Air Jordans in History


Top-10-Most-Expensive-Air-Jordans

Even though Michael Jordan retired (for a third time) from basketball in 2003, his legacy lives on in multiple ways. The iconic Air Jordan sneaker is a great example, as it’s one of the most popular basketball shoes ever released by Nike. But these kicks are far from cheap, with some selling for millions!

The most expensive Air Jordans in history are the customized “solid gold” ones commissioned by Canadian artist Drake in 2016. These OVO x Air Jordan 10s are worth about $2.1 million. These are the most expensive Jordans because they’re entirely covered in gold.

High-quality sneakers can be just as valuable as precious metals and rare gemstones. In this ranking, we’ll explore which Air Jordans are the most worthwhile physical assets to add to your shoe closet!

Here Are the Top 10 Most Expensive Air Jordans in History:

  1. Air Jordan 10 x OVO “Solid Gold” – $2.1 million
  2. Michael Jordan’s Game-Worn Air Ships – $1.472 million
  3. Michael Jordan Air Jordan 1 “Dunk Sole” – $1.012 million
  4. Air Jordan 1 High “Shattered Backboard” – $615,000
  5. Michael Jordan Game Worn & Signed Air Jordan 1 Chicago – $560,000
  6. Michael Jordan Game-Worn & Signed Air Jordan 13s – $378,000
  7. Michael Jordan NBA Finals Air Jordan 6s – $252,000
  8. Michael Jordan Signed Air Jordan 11 “Space Jam” – $176,400
  9. Air Jordan 7 “Olympic” – $112,500
  10. Michael Jordan’s “Flu Game” Air Jordan 12s – $104,765

10. Michael Jordan’s “Flu Game” Air Jordan 12s – $104,765

Michael-Jordan's-Flu-Game-Air-Jordan-12s
photo source: SI

If you’ve followed Michael Jordan’s NBA career, you’re likely familiar with the Flu Game of 1997, also known as Game 5 of the 1997 NBA Finals.

This game was notable because Jordan was struggling to combat the flu, but despite his symptoms, he continued playing, eventually helping the Chicago Bulls defeat the Utah Jazz. After winning, Jordan gifted his game-winning sneakers to the ball boy for the Utah Jazz, Preston Truman.

Truman held onto the autographed Air Jordan 12s for over a decade before auctioning them off for $104,765 in 2013. These Air Jordans are more valuable than many of the world’s most expensive boots, some of which feature precious jewels and metals!

Why Is It So Expensive?

Some moments in sports history become more powerful over time, and that’s certainly the case with the Flu Game of 1997. This game helped boost Michael Jordan’s reputation, as he still played exceptionally well despite being ill.

Any memorabilia associated with this game, including Jordan’s used Air Jordan 12s, is a valuable and irreplaceable piece of history. As such, it’s no surprise that these sneakers were able to fetch such an incredible price at auction.

Not only did Michael Jordan wear (and autograph) these Air Jordans, but they’re also a physical artifact from one of the athlete’s most life-changing, career-boosting games.

9. Air Jordan 7 “Olympic” – $112,500

Air-Jordan-7-Olympic
photo source: Christie’s

Game-worn sneakers can sell for big bucks, especially those worn during crucial moments in sports history. The Air Jordan 7s worn by Jordan during the 1992 Olympics are a top-notch example, selling for $112,500 at a Christie’s auction in 2020.

These size 13 sneakers feature red-white-and-blue accents, with gold-colored touches symbolizing Team USA’s hopes to win gold medals that year. This dream would come true, with Jordan helping the US players earn the Olympic gold medal in men’s basketball.

Even if you’re not a basketball fan, you can’t deny that these special Air Jordan 7s are a unique part of international sports history.

Why Is It So Expensive?

There are a lot of things going on with these patriotic Jordans. Firstly, they were worn by Michael Jordan during the 1992 Olympics. That feature alone would make them a treasure for collectors.

But secondly, these are the Jordans that MJ wore while leading Team USA to victory in men’s basketball. Consequently, they’re just as worthy of becoming part of a museum collection as they are sitting inside an exclusive shoe closet!

8. Michael Jordan Signed Air Jordan 11 “Space Jam” – $176,400

Michael-Jordan-Signed-Air-Jordan-11-Space-Jam
photo source: Sotheby’s

The 1996 hit film Space Jam became an immediate classic when it debuted, and it’s still remembered fondly by basketball fans and 90s babies. But have you ever wondered what happened to the Air Jordan 11s Michael Jordan wore throughout the film?

If so, wonder no more! While multiple versions of these sneakers were created for the athlete throughout filming, a never-worn (but autographed) pair sold at auction for $176,400 in 2021.

Although these aren’t game-worn Jordans, they’re highly coveted by film buffs and sports fans, and they’re also extremely rare. These qualities help make the Space Jam Air Jordan 11s incredibly valuable.

Why Is It So Expensive?

Pretty much any item featured in a high-grossing film can sell for incredible prices at auction. But there’s something special about the Air Jordan 11s featured in Space Jam.

These shoes play a significant role in the film, helping Michael Jordan play his best against the fictional animated villains. Generations of children have grown up watching Space Jam, and these blue-grey basketball shoes are iconic for many.

But only a few pairs were made for Jordan, and most are now part of private collections. So, any time a pair shows up at auction, you can bet bidders go a little crazy!

7. Michael Jordan NBA Finals Air Jordan 6s – $252,000

Michael-Jordan-NBA-Finals-Air-Jordan-6s
photo source: Sotheby’s

Would you pay more than $250,000 for a pair of used, slightly torn basketball sneakers? For most, the answer would probably be a solid “No.” But the Air Jordan 6s worn by Michael Jordan during the 1991 NBA Finals might have you making an exception.

Jordan was wearing these black-and-red Air Jordans (with beige sole accents) during Game Four of the finals, a game he helped win against the Los Angeles Lakers. As such, these shoes mark yet another high point in the now-retired athlete’s incredible basketball career.

Though these shoes were gifted to Sonny Vaccaro, the man primarily responsible for creating the Air Jordan brand, they went to auction in 2020, selling for a hefty $252,000.

Why Is It So Expensive?

There are quite a few reasons why these Jordans are so expensive. They’re autographed by Michael Jordan, worn during one of the most pivotal games of his career, and they’re one-of-a-kind.

Until recently, they were also in the possession of the man responsible for signing Jordan to the Nike shoe sponsorship, thus starting the Air Jordan line. These qualities make the 1991 NBA Finals Air Jordan 6s a valuable pair of kicks.

6. Michael Jordan Game-Worn & Signed Air Jordan 13s – $378,000

Michael-Jordan-Game-Worn-Signed-Air-Jordan-13s
photo source: Christie’s

In 1998, Michael Jordan announced that he would be retiring from basketball after more than a dozen seasons playing professionally in the NBA. His retirement announcement shocked many, as he was still at the top of his game and the Chicago Bulls’ most valuable player.

Although Jordan did end up leaving retirement to play again, this second retirement from professional basketball is still considered an important moment in US sports history. And if you had $378,000 to spend, you could’ve owned a piece of that history by snapping up the Air Jordan 13s he wore (and signed) during one of his “last” 1998 games.

Why Is It So Expensive?

The main reason these Air Jordan 13s are so valuable is that they were worn by Michael Jordan during yet another crucial moment in his career.

Of course, the fact that he autographed these sneakers also makes them pricey, as Jordan is one of the most celebrated basketball players of all time. Anything he’s signed, especially during the 1990s (the height of his career), is sure to sell for top-dollar prices.

5. Michael Jordan Game Worn & Signed Air Jordan 1 Chicago – $560,000

Michael-Jordan-Game-Worn-Signed-Air-Jordan-1-Chicago
photo source: Sotheby’s

The first consumer-available Air Jordans were released in 1985 and were called the Air Jordan 1s. Finding a pair of these historically significant shoes is challenging, but acquiring a pair worn by Michael Jordan in 1985 is even harder.

Still, a signed pair of 1985 Air Jordan 1s exist, and these red-and-white sneakers (colored for the Chicago Bulls) sold for $560,000 at a Sotheby’s auction in 2020. At the time, this sale set a new record for the costliest sneakers.

Why Is It So Expensive?

These kicks were some of the first official Air Jordans that Michael Jordan ever sported while playing basketball for the Chicago Bulls.

They also feature his signature, making them valuable pieces of history and high-value sports memorabilia. These factors are why the pair of 1985 Jordans is so costly.

But while more than half a million dollars might seem like a lot to spend on a pair of used basketball sneakers, it’s vital to point out that these Air Jordan 1s aren’t the most expensive ever sold!

4. Air Jordan 1 High “Shattered Backboard” – $615,000

Air-Jordan-1-High-Shattered-Backboard
photo source: Christie’s

The “Shattered Backboard” Air Jordan 1 High sneakers have seen better days. The high tops are peeling and a little faded. But maybe that’s to be expected of sneakers that are more than three decades old!

It’s also important to mention that these game-worn Air Jordan 1s saw a lot of action during their 1985 heyday. In fact, Michael Jordan was wearing these kicks when he shattered the backboard during a game in Italy.

A small shard of this backboard ended up wedged into the sole of one of the shoes and remains there today, hence the nickname for these Air Jordans. This unique feature might be partially responsible for the pair’s incredible auction price of $615,000.

Why Is It So Expensive?

Like many other high-value Air Jordans, this pair is historically significant. Not only is it one of the first Air Jordans ever released, but it was also the pair Jordan was wearing during one of the most iconic moments of his basketball career.

3. Michael Jordan Air Jordan 1 “Dunk Sole” – $1.012 Million

Michael-Jordan-Air-Jordan-1-Dunk-Sole
photo source: Heritage Auctions

As you’ve seen, several of the most expensive Jordans are Air Jordan 1s. But the costliest pair is the “Dunk Sole,” a pair Jordan wore in 1986.

These sneakers feature the retired Air Jordan logo (a basketball set into a pair of wings) that would eventually be replaced by the image of Jordan dunking a ball. But the “Dunk Sole” didn’t get its name because Jordan dunked many basketballs while wearing them!

Instead, these unique kicks are so-called because their soles come from the Nike Dunk shoe lineup. This was a novel change from the original Air Jordan 1 design, making the “Dunk Sole” a unique pair well worth their $1.012 price tag.

Why Is It So Expensive?

Historical significance, rarity, and Jordan’s autograph are why this pair of Air Jordans is so valuable.

2. Michael Jordan’s Game-Worn Air Ships – $1.472 Million

Michael-Jordan's-Game-Worn-Air-Ships
photo source: Sotheby’s

Contrary to popular belief, the first pair of Air Jordans wasn’t the Air Jordan 1. Before Nike and Michael Jordan collaborated to release the first consumer-available Air Jordans, the famous shoe brand outfitted Jordan with a customized pair of kicks, the Air Ships.

These original pre-Jordan Air Jordans are one-of-a-kind sneakers that are historically significant for several reasons. They’re also incredibly valuable, selling for $1.472 million at a 2021 Sotheby’s auction.

Why Is It So Expensive?

These Air Jordans predate the Air Jordan brand, and they’re the first sneakers Michael Jordan wore after becoming a professional NBA athlete. Their red-and-white coloration was also instantly recognizable, as Jordan’s basketball career truly kicked off after joining the Chicago Bulls, whose colors are red and white.

Though Jordan was fined for wearing these kicks while playing ($5,000 per game), he persisted, and Nike rewarded him. Within a year of debuting the original Air Ships, Nike and Jordan would release the first consumer-ready Air Jordans, thus kicking off a brand that’s still popular today.

Overall, these Jordans are valuable because of their historical significance and celebrity associations. That said, they’re not quite as pricey as the most expensive Yeezys!

1. Air Jordan 10 x OVO “Solid Gold” – $2.1 Million

Air-Jordan-10-x-OVO-Solid-Gold
photo source: Msenna & Co

The most expensive Air Jordans are the 10 x OVO “Solid Gold” sneakers commissioned by Canadian rapper Drake.

Created in 2016, these gold sneakers are worth an astounding $2.1 million, making them even more valuable than the first pair of Air Jordan 1s or game-worn Air Ships worn by basketball legend Michael Jordan throughout 1984 and 1985.

Of course, these shoes likely aren’t the comfiest Jordans, as they’re made of solid gold. But because they’re made of one of the most expensive precious metals on the planet, they’re inherently valuable.

Why Is It So Expensive?

It’s not very difficult to understand why Drake’s solid gold Air Jordans are worth million. After all, they’re made of gold!

These Jordans are also one-of-a-kind. No other pair of Air Jordans has ever been made of gold, so these lavish sneakers are irreplaceable and impossible to replicate perfectly.

But the other aspect that makes the gold Air Jordans so costly is their ownership.

These kicks belong to Drake, one of the most successful artists of the last decade. If he ever decides to sell these Air Jordans, he’ll likely be able to make a profit, as many people are happy to spend millions to own something that once belonged to a notable celebrity.

What’s the Most Expensive Pair of Air Jordans?

The most expensive Jordans of all time are the 10 x OVO “Solid Gold” sneakers that belong to Aubrey Drake Graham, better known as Drake. These shoes are worth $2.1 million and are made of solid gold, as their nickname implies.

Even if these Air Jordans weren’t made of gold (one of the most valuable precious metals), they’d probably be worth a small fortune because of their celebrity ownership. Still, just owning one of these shoes could make you a millionaire.

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Eric Lyons

Eric is a subject-matter expert on the world's most expensive luxuries and collectibles. He has explored thousands of luxuries and collectibles over the past few years and now brings them to readers around the world.

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