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Obama and Jordan basketball vests sell for record sums


image copyrightAFP

image captionSports shirts worn by Michael Jordan, Colin Kapaernick, Barack Obama and LeBron James sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars

Two basketball vests – one worn by the NBA superstar Michael Jordan and the other by former US president Barack Obama – sold for record sums at a Los Angeles auction on Friday.

Jordan’s number 23 vest, which he wore when he signed for the Chicago Bulls in 1984, sold for $320,000 (£235,000).

Mr Obama’s vest, worn with his Punahou School team, went for $192,000 – a record for a high-school sports shirt.

Last year, another one of his high-school vests fetched $120,000.

Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills said Mr Obama wore his shirt – also number 23 – in 1979, when he helped his team win the Hawaii basketball state championship.

The ex-president’s love of the game has followed him through life. In his new memoir, A Promised Land, he said he had to stop coaching his daughter Sasha’s basketball team after parents from a rival team complained that he was giving them an unfair advantage.

media captionThe couple were picked by the so-called ‘Kiss-Cam’ at the Verizon Center in Washington

Michael Jordan – the first billionaire athlete – was at the centre of the Chicago Bulls team that won six NBA championships in the 1990s. A documentary series, The Last Dance, about the team’s standout successes was a hit on Netflix earlier this year.

President Obama appeared as one of the show’s interviewees, saying: “Michael Jordan and the Bulls changed the culture.”

The previous record sum for a Jordan “number 23” shirt was $288,000 in an auction in July.

Also on sale in the latest auction was an autographed Cavaliers shirt worn by current NBA star Lebron James, which sold for $128,000, and an NFL football shirt worn by quarterback Colin Kapaernick, from his debut for the San Francisco 49ers.

Kapaernick’s shirt also sold for $128,000 – a new record for an NFL shirt.

In 2016, Kaepernick became a symbol in the fight against racial injustice when he kneeled in protest during the US national anthem.

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