Kobe Bryant Game-Worn Rookie Jersey Sells for $2.735 Million

Kobe Bryant Game-Worn Rookie Jersey Sells for $2.735 Million

The only Kobe Bryant jersey ever to be photo matched to his rookie season playoff run was auctioned off for $2.735 million, the second-highest amount for a game-worn basketball jersey. That jersey was also worn by—Kobe Bryant. 

The newest jersey was expected to fetch between $3 million and $5 million. Bryant wore the jersey in his first season (1996-97), including two playoff games, according to the Associated Press.

The jersey from the Lakers legend was photo matched by Meigray, Resolution and Sports Investors. 

SCP Auctions President David Kohler said in a written statement, “The overall auction brought extremely strong numbers and many record sales. The auction total went over $8 million, which is the second-biggest auction in company history. This incredible sale happened amidst stock market volatility and war overseas, too.”

NBA.com reported the buyer did not want to be acknowledged in addition to the seller, who had the jersey for 25 years.

Last year, one of Bryant’s rookie jerseys was bought for $3.69 million. The autographed, yellow game-worn basketball jersey fetched the highest price ever for a basketball jersey.

The winner took home the jersey Bryant wore for the Los Angeles Lakers in regular-season wins on April 13, 1997, against Utah and April 17, 1997, against Sacramento. He wore the same jersey at home games on May 8 and May 10 in the Western Conference semifinals against Utah.

Bryant played his entire 20-year NBA career with the Los Angeles Lakers. He was a five-time NBA champion, a two-time Finals MVP, and the league’s most valuable player in 2008.

During his career, Bryant made the All-Star team 18 times and was the youngest player to ever reach 30,000 career points. Bryant retired from the NBA in 2016. 

The 41-year-old basketball legend died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, along with his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven other people on Jan. 26, 2020.