Jackie Robinson ’47’s first ticket stub sells for record $480,000; Michael Jordan ’84 first ticket hits $468,000

The record for the most expensive collectible sports ticket was set twice with Heritage Auctions early on Sunday.

Meanwhile, a ticket stub from Jackie Robinson’s 1947 debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers and a full ticket from Michael Jordan’s 1984 debut with the Chicago Bulls, both rated by PSA (Professional Sports Authenticators), sold 480,000 respectively. $ and $468,000.

The previous record for the most expensive collectible sports ticket was $264,000, a ticket stub from Jordan’s NBA debut – the same game, albeit a verified ticket – is now the third sports ticket to be sold. collect the most expensive of all time.

Mike Cole, director of admissions for operations at Quinnipiac University, was a freshman at Northwestern University in 1984. A lifelong Bullets fan, his father surprised him with two tickets to a Bulls game- October Bullets.

“I was only a month or two away at school,” said Cole, who asked several classmates to attend. “I was neither surprised nor disappointed that no one could accompany me.”

Cole put away the unused ticket; it is now the only known complete ticket from Jordan’s debut, according to Heritage. Over the decades, moves and downsizing, he went from club to club, a beacon of a bygone era when his late father watched him from afar.

“It was my first time seeing a Bulls game,” Cole said, recalling his father, who was a DC-area attorney. “Years after he died and he’s still supporting me.”

“He was 18, in a new town, and nobody picked him up to go to the game,” said Chris Ivy, director of sports auctions at Heritage Auctions. “[In his pocket]it’s an old memory [into] a lottery ticket.”

Cole joked that he “wouldn’t get Lamborghinis”, a day before his financial fortunes changed irrevocably.

“I was frugal for 55 years,” Cole said. “Our needs are met – we’re lucky to that extent – but we can catch some planes. I have family in Hawaii and Barcelona that I’ve never visited.”

As cards and memorabilia have exploded during the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a surge in popularity for tickets and stubs from past sporting events.

“Tickets are riding a wave of popularity as we’ve seen before with vintage photography, [especially with this] Jackie Robinson’s ticket stub broke the color barrier,” Ivy said.

He added: “Thousands of people are going down to their basements and finding things. We need to respond to all of them before something like this happens.”

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