Wilt Chamberlain’s 1972 Finals Lakers Jersey Sells for $4.9 Million at Auction

Wilt Chamberlain playing for the Philadelphia Warriors In 1962
Wilt Chamberlain playing for the Philadelphia Warriors In 1962. Photo by Granger/Shutterstock (8765919a)

Wilt Chamberlain’s Los Angeles Lakers jersey, which the late Hall of Famer wore during the 1972 NBA Finals, has just sold for $4.9 million at an auction.

The auction, conducted by Sotheby’s, was first announced in August when the jersey was displayed at the auction house’s gallery in Los Angeles. The bidding started on August 28 and concluded this week with a winning bid that surpassed expectations. The original projection was that the jersey would fetch around $4 million.

The final price of $4.9 million makes the 1972 Finals jersey the most expensive piece of Chamberlain memorabilia. It surpassed the jersey from Chamberlain’s rookie-year with the Philadelphia Warriors, which sold for $1.792 million.

Chamberlain’s Lakers jersey is also the third most expensive jersey ever sold. It only trails the autographed Kobe Bryant jersey from his MVP season in 2007-08, which sold for $5.8 million, and the 1998 NBA Finals jersey worn by Michael Jordan, which auctioned for $10.1 million.

The original listing of Wilt Chamberlain’s jersey stated that the player wore it in three different games during the 1972 postseason. This included Game 5 of the 1972 Finals against the New York Knicks, which the Lakers won to clinch the title. Chamberlain won the NBA Finals MVP honors.