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Auction Action: Weekend Review (June 4-5)

Auction Review

From fractional comparables at Goldin to record-breaking sales at SCP Auctions and Grey Flannel, we review the relevant results and key storylines from a busy auction weekend.

Fractional Results

Comparable results were limited this weekend but the Goldin Monthly Sale did offer six individual comps to fractional assets.The 1986 Fleer Basketball Sealed Wax Box reached a final price of $168,000 after selling at Goldin for $12,000 less in May. The Sealed Wax Boxes on Rally and Collectable are both currently priced below the auction valuation at 10% and 4% lower respectively. The 1996-97 Fleer Skybox E-X2000 Sealed Wax Box was the worst-performing comparable as a single box sold for $5,400. Collectable currently has a case of three boxes valued at $9,850 per box that is scheduled to open for trading later this month.

Key Storylines

More money moves into memorabilia. This weekend, more than $5 million worth of memorabilia was transacted across three different auction houses as SCP, Grey Flannel, and Goldin all facilitated the sales of impressive game-worn assets. The top sale, the only known and photomatched Kobe Bryant jersey from his rookie playoff series, sold for $2.7 million at SCP Auctions. The jersey becomes the second most-expensive basketball jersey sold at auction and attracted 26 bids during the event. SCP Auctions also sold a 1920-22 Babe Ruth Game Used H&B Bat for $227,856 after the piece of 1920s lumber garnered 15 bids. Grey Flannel established a new record for any hockey memorabilia, more on that later, while also selling eight total pieces of memorabilia for at least six-figures. The rookie Kobe jersey was not the only piece of high-profile memorabilia from #24 to sell this week. Goldin's top memorabilia sale was a while jersey photomatched to Christmas Day 2012. The Kobe threads sold for $188,400 and was one of two NBA jerseys to sell for six-figures in the event.

Record Results

1988 Wayne Gretzky Edmonton Oilers Stanley Cup Clinching Game-Used Jersey : $1,452,000

We have a new hockey-memorabilia record as Grey Flannel Auctions established an all-time top price with this sale of a 1988 Gretzky-worn jersey. Gretzky's iconic #99 is the only number that the NHL has retired league-wide and this jersey was the last worn by Gretzky as an Edmonton Oiler. Gretzky and the Oilers closed out the Boston Bruins in a four game series giving #99 his fourth Stanley Cup in five seasons. After the final horn sounded, the story of Gretzky's transition to the Los Angeles Kings after the 1988 season has been documented in ESPN Films 30 for 30 "Kings Ransom". This sweater surpassed the previous record, Paul Henderson's 1972 Summer Series Jersey which sold for $1.3 million nearly a decade ago. While hockey has consistently lagged in prices behind other major sports, the jersey is the most expensive piece of hockey memorabilia or cardboard ever sold at auction.

1988 Wayne Gretzky Edmonton Oilers Stanley Cup Clinching Game-Used Gloves : $204,162

The Gretzky jersey was not the only piece from 'The Great Ones' final Stanley Cup ensemble that was sold and established a new record this weekend. The gloves worn by Gretzky, which were also photomatched to his final Stanley Cup run as an Oiler, sold for $204,162 after a fierce bidding war of 38 total bids carried the final hammer price to a new record for any hockey gloves. The gloves, which feature Gretzky's number and show slight but not overly heavy damage, attracted seven more bids than any other item at Grey Flannel's auction. Considering the jersey sold at a 7x multiple to the gloves, both of which are impressive pieces of history, one factor to watch could be the continued development and emergence of ancillary assets. Items such as bats, baseballs, helmets, and gloves have displayed a significant discount to jerseys and uniforms, which could provide an opportunity for investors as high-end memorabilia appreciates to levels that are unreachable for most collectors.

1970 Topps Pete Rose : $55,152

Banned from baseball and banished from the Hall of Fame, Pete Rose cards and memorabilia have struggled to show significant appreciation even though "Charlie Hustle" is one of the most recognizable players to have step onto the diamond. SCP Auctions established a new record for this 1970 Topps Card as the final price also matched the hammer price for a 1972 gem mint Rose. The sale is well below the all-time record for any Pete Rose card, as one of his 1963 rookies previously sold for $717,000 at auction, but the rise in valuations in his 1970s cardboard is a promising sign that the player who baseball looks down at in disgrace, is still appreciated for his talent by the collector class.

As the calendar turns to summer, auctions will become more limited prior to the build-up of the fall auction season. In the meantime, Altan Insights will have collectors and investors covered with reviews of relevant comps and key auction highlights. If you invest on fractional platforms such as Rally, Masterworks, Collectable, Vint, or Otis, be sure to check out our website for powerful data and tools! Signup for Altan Insights now.

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