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    The defining accessory of the NBA's true G.O.A.T.

    1989 Michael Jordan Game Worn & Signed "Air Jordan IV" Sneakers with Charity Auction Provenance. The Air Jordan IV was legendary Nike designer Tinker Hatfield's second Jordan creation and his career-defining masterpiece, rivalled only by the Air Jordan I as the Jordan footwear coveted most by sneakerphiles the world over. Furthermore, the IV's hold the distinction of being the first Air Jordan issue to be released globally.

    The shoes' signature elements include the "Nike Air" logo featured on the heels, The Jumpman logo on the tongues with "Flight" below, "Air units" in the heels and forefoot, over-molded side mesh paneling with urethane-coated netting for breathability, animal-friendly Duraback leather uppers, customizable multiport lace locks and wings which allowed for a more tailored fit and different lacing patters, and finally "Air Jordan" stitched upside down inside the tongues, so if you flipped the tongues down, the text would read right side up.

    Michael debuted the Air Jordan IV at the NBA All-Star Game in February 1989 and wore them well into the 1989-90 campaign, donning a total of three of the four original colorways - "White Cement," "Black Cement," and "Fire Red." Famously, Jordan wore this model when he hit "The Shot" over Craig Ehlo to dispatch the Cavs in the 1989 playoffs.

    In the summer of 1989, director Spike Lee's featured the IV's in his film "Do the Right Thing," which served to lay the foundations for establishing the Jordan brand as a touchstone for hip-hop, street culture, and the ensuing sneaker craze of the 90's.

    Mike's game worn player exclusive Air Jordan IV's on offer here appear in "Fire Red," the most popular of the original colorways. The interior tagging confirms Jordan's size ("13"), production date (July 1989), and production facility (the Feng Tay 2 factory in Taiwan, which is known for producing high end basketball shoes, including player samples and hyperstrikes).

    Based on the production date and the date on the charity auction letter (November 15, 1989), Jordan would have worn these sneakers sometime during an eight-game span (11/3 to 11/15, when he averaged 35.1 points per game) at the start of the 1989-90 campaign. That season, he would go on to lead the NBA in both scoring average (33.6 points per game) and steals (2.8 steals per game).

    Michael donated these sneakers to The Rainbow House/Arco Iris which auctioned them at its Christmas fair to raise money to help abused women and their children. Included with this lot is a copy of the original letter which the organization sent to Michael thanking him for his generous donation, which was given to the winning bidder.

    Appearing on "The Rainbow House Arco Iris" stationery, the letter is addressed "To Michael Jordan, Chicago Bulls c/o Dorothy Vanoy [Michael's mother-in-law]" with the handwritten black sharpie note reading "For: Wally Gara, winner of Michael Jordan shoes."

    The outer side of each shoe is beautifully signed "Best Wishes Michael Jordan" in 9/10 vintage black sharpie. These exemplars exhibit wonderful game wear, including evidence of leather creasing and sock pilling. Best of all is their overall superlative condition, especially the midsoles which remain intact. While some crack lines are visible on the midsoles, it is important to note that there is no separation or disengagement between the midsoles and the uppers. The IV's midsoles are almost impossible to find in such an exemplary state because the composite from which they were constructed tends to degrade easily over time.

    The first four models of game worn Air Jordan sneakers are referred to as "grails" by sneakerphiles because of their rarity, design aesthetics, and the fact they were worn by Michael during the dawn of his career, when his aerial acrobatics were at their zenith - boundless, unscripted, and reckless. Finding a legitimate pair of game worn IV's is a task in and of itself. However, acquiring a pair which is both intact and supported by solid provenance is significantly more challenging. Don't miss this rare opportunity to own the defining accessory of ESPN's Athlete of the Century and the NBA's true G.O.A.T.

    LOA from Heritage Auctions. LOA from PSA/DNA (left shoe). LOA from PSA/DNA (right shoe). Letter of provenance from The Rainbow House/Arco Iris.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2020
    3rd Saturday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 24
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,328

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