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SPORTS

Kobe Bryant items fetch premium prices in sale

BASKETBALL By AFP | May 23rd 2020
May 21, 2001 BASKETBALL - Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant celebrates while San Antonio Spurs forward Tim Duncan walks off disconsolately during Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals at the Alamodome in San Antonio. Duncan's monster 40-point game went in vain as Bryant added 28 points of his own to lead Los Angeles to an 88-81 victory and a 2-0 lead in the series. [REUTERS/Andess Latif/File photo]

A Hollywood moment for NBA legend Kobe Bryant proved a big draw in a Beverly Hills auction of sport memorabilia, his handprints in concrete selling for $75,000 (Sh8 million).

Julien’s Auctions said the handprints were tests that were made by Bryant in 2011, when he became the first athlete to leave his prints alongside those of some of Hollywood’s biggest stars in the forecourt of the Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard.

The item fetched more than 18 times its presale estimate of $4,000-6,000 (Sh 428,000-Sh642,000).

Other highlights of the Julien’s auction included a full uniform worn by Bryant during the 1999-2000 NBA Finals and embroidered with an official NBA logo under a black band worn in remembrance of Wilt Chamberlain that sold for $43,750 -- more than four times its estimate of $10,000.

Bryant, who won five NBA titles in a 20-year career with the Lakers, died in a helicopter crash in January that also claimed the life of his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others.

Memorabilia of his career is fetching jaw-dropping auction prices, with a Lakers championship ring that he gave his mother selling for $201,250 (Sh21m) at an auction run by New Jersey-based Goldin Auctions this week.

One of Bryant’s rookie cards sold for $110,400 (Sh11m) in the Goldin sale. Bryant-related items realized $202,590 at the Julien’s auction, where one 2006-07 season game-worn jersey sold for $22,400. While collectors are clearly hungry for something to remember Bryant by, the ESPN documentary “The Last Dance” has also fueled desire for items related former Chicago Bulls great Michael Jordan.

A Jordan 1986-87 Fleer rookie trading card sold in the Goldin auction for $99,630 (Sh10.6m). But the highest price in the opening session was for a signed rookie card for three-time American League Most Valuable Player Mike Trout. 

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