A jersey worn by Magic Johnson during the 1992 Summer Olympics could be a dream addition for some collector, but it won’t come cheap.
According to John Arcand, host of the ‘Big Ten Treasure Hunter’ show on the Big Ten Network, there will be significant interest in Johnson's jersey. Arcand thinks that Johnson, a former Michigan State star before becoming a Hall of Famer with the Lakers, has name appeal to see this become an intriguing item.
“I know the views on this will be an extreme. A regular jersey might fetch only $400. But it has the ‘Dream Team’ and all they represented themselves and the USA version of that…I would expect a Magic Johnson to fetch in the $2,000-$3,000 range,” Arcand told FOX Business.
That is certainly a far cry from Babe Ruth’s jersey that was sold for $5.64 million at auction, but Johnson's Olympic jersey is still a healthy investment for a fan to make.
The former Los Angeles Lakers star is one of the best players in the history of the NBA and his success as a businessman as well as an investor have helped give him an even broader global appeal. Johnson was one of the members of the original ‘Dream Team,’ the first time that the United States ever sent professional players to compete in basketball at the Olympics. The squad is arguably the greatest collection of all-time, featuring Johnson alongside Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley and David Robinson among other stars from the NBA’s greatest generation.
The jersey, being offered through SCP Auctions, is especially significant for collectors as it marks a comeback for Johnson. Having initially retired on the eve of the 1991-92 season following a revelation that he had contracted HIV, Johnson returned to the game on a competitive level to be a part of the Olympic team.
This past April, Johnson stepped down as president of basketball operations of the Lakers. He has formed a strong identity away from his success on the basketball court, including owning at one point 125 Starbucks franchises. He's currently a Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner. This touch for business continues to make Johnson relevant though he has been retired from basketball for well over two decades.
The combination of Johnson's stellar basketball career, his success as an entrepreneur and his personal fight against HIV are points that Arcand thinks could help the value of this particular jersey.
Also in the auction is a Mickey Mantle signed contract and jerseys worn by Willie Mays and Ernie Banks.
Arcand said that if a Michael Jordan ‘Dream Team’ jersey hit the market, it could currently land over $200,000 at an auction.