Year in Review: Collectible Moments that Mattered in 2022
December 30, 2022
2022 was an action-packed year in the collectibles world. While many markets encountered significant turbulence, 2022 certainly didn't want for records, headlines, highlights, and intrigue. Here's a recap of the moments that caught our eye over the last twelve months. Join us for a walk down memory lane before we turn the page on 2022 and embark on our 2023 adventures.
Fanatics acquires Topps Trading Cards and Collectibles for $500 million.
Marvel Secret Wars original Venom art sells for $3.2 million at Heritage, signaling heightened demand for unique 1/1 comic art.
Goldin sells a game-worn, “GOAT” inscribed Tom Brady Buccaneers jersey for $480,000, establishing a record for any game-worn NFL memorabilia. Market observers remark at how low the football record is for the rest of 2022.
In a fractional first, shareholders send two items on Collectable to auction at the Lelands MINT 25 Auction: a PSA 10 E98 Ty Cobb card and Kareem Abdul Jabbar’s Scoring Record Basketball. However, bidding for both ultimately fails to meet the reserve prices.
Sotheby’s sells 200 pairs of Virgil Abloh’s Louis Vuitton Nike Air Force 1s, with proceeds benefiting the late Abloh’s scholarship fund. The event tallies $25.3 million in total sales, with a high price of $352,800, an average price of $126,662, and 82% of pairs reaching six-figure sums. The high estimate was $15,000.
Heritage establishes the most expensive and second most expensive ticket sales of all time, as a Jackie Robinson debut ticket graded PSA 2 sells for $480,000 and a Michael Jordan NBA debut full ticket graded Authentic sells for $468,000.
Rally completes the buyout of its PSA 9 Alifabolaget Pele rookie card for $1.33 million. 57% of shares vote to accept the offer, which delivers a 253.5% net return on the IPO price. The sale is a soccer card record.
PWCC announces that a Kobe Bryant Green PMG card has sold for $2 million in a private sale, a record for the player.
Nike files a lawsuit against StockX, accusing the sneaker resale marketplace of using its trademarks without authorization in selling NFTs “at heavily inflated prices to unsuspecting consumers.” The lawsuit escalates throughout 2022, with Nike additionally accusing StockX of selling counterfeit goods.
Stock trading platform Public announces the acquisition of fractional marketplace Otis for an undisclosed amount, bringing fractional alts to its 3 million person user base.
Golden Age announces that it has brokered a private sale of a pass to the 1934 Augusta National Invitation Tournament (the inaugural Masters) for $600,000, breaking the ticket record once again.
Leland’s sells Tom Brady’s “last” touchdown pass football for $518,628. Tom Brady promptly unretires.
Fanatics reaches a licensing agreement with WWE that includes e-commerce, NFTs, and trading cards, with Topps set to resume producing WWE cards at the end of Panini’s existing deal.
Collectable and IMG host the first annual MINT Collective in Las Vegas, a first of its kind event for collectors of and investors in sports cards and memorabilia.
Sotheby’s sells Diego Maradona’s “Hand of God” jersey for $9.3 million, establishing a new record for game-worn memorabilia.
Golden Age Auctions sells the “Tiger Slam” irons used by Tiger in 2000-01 for $5.2 million, a record for any golf memorabilia.
A CGC 8.0 copy of Superman #1 becomes the most expensive comic book ever sold, selling for $5.3 million via private sale.
Heritage closes its largest Comic Book & Comic Art event in its history, totaling $27.6 million.
Leland’s voids the sale of the Brady football.
Andy Warhol’s Shot Sage Blue Marilyn sells at Christie’s for $195 million, underperforming the $200 million estimate but establishing a new record for the artist.
The Macklowe Collection becomes the most expensive single owner collection ever sold at auction as Sotheby’s completes Part II of the sale and raises the total to $922 million.
Goldin sells Lewis Hamilton’s 2020 Topps Chrome Superfractor for $900,000, nearly tripling the prior record for a Formula 1 card.
After a months’ long frenzy, the 2020-21 Flawless LeBron James Triple Logoman card is finally pulled in a break.
Mercedes-Benz announces that it has sold one of two 300SLR Uhlenhaut coupes to a private collector for $143 million, making it the most expensive car ever sold.
Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov auctions off his Nobel Peace Prize at Heritage Auctions to raise money Ukrainian child refugees. The medal sells for $103.5 million, almost 22 times the prior record for a Nobel Prize.
Wayne Gretzky’s last Oilers jersey, worn to clinch the Stanley Cup, sells for $1,452,000 at Grey Flannel, a new record for any hockey memorabilia.
A Serena Williams NetPro International Series Authentic Apparel card, graded PSA 8, sells for $266,400 at Goldin, breaking the record for a women’s sports card which had already fallen multiple times in 2022. In November, the same exact card sells for $39,600.
The LeBron Triple Logoman sells for $2,400,000 at Goldin, below some of the wildest expectations during the search.
Beckett announces the launch of VHS grading services with the acquisition of VHSDNA.
PSA announces that it has reopened all services following a backlog-driven suspension that began in March 2021.
Jim Irsay buys Muhammad Ali’s “Rumble in the Jungle” WBC Belt for $6.2 million at Heritage, far surpassing the $1 million estimate and sending the other belt on Collectable skyrocketing. The Collectable belt rises from $302,400 to a peak of $967,680 before cooling significantly into year end.
Islay-based Scotch producer Ardbeg announces that it sold Cask No. 3 privately for approximately $19 million, a new record for any cask of whisky. The cask dates to 1975, surviving a turbulent period in Ardbeg’s history that saw it struggle to stay afloat through the 70s, 80s, and 90s.
Goldin announces the $7.25 million sale of an SGC 2 T206 Honus Wagner card. The card is - very briefly - the most expensive ever sold.
Heritage sells an SGC 9.5 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle card for $12.6 million, establishing a record for any sports collectible and demolishing the prior card record.
At the same Heritage event, a Babe Ruth bat sells for $1,680,000, a record for a baseball bat.
AC Momento launches its platform for auctioning and showcasing game-worn soccer jerseys, with in-match live bidding.
Altan Insights launches Alts & Ends, in our humble opinion, the best weekly newsletter on collectibles markets. This is indeed a shameless plug, and yes, you should go subscribe immediately for entertaining commentary on all of these events as they happen.
Christie’s announces that it will sell the famed Paul Allen Collection, scoring a massive victory in handling the sale of such a unique and esteemed collection of works.
Sotheby’s sells Michael Jordan’s jersey from Game 1 of the 1998 NBA Finals for $10,091,000, breaking the recently set record for most expensive piece of game-worn sports memorabilia (or sports memorabilia altogether, if you exclude cards, as we do).
Leland’s sells Tom Brady’s formerly “last” touchdown ball for $129,658, completing the saga.
Fractional assets that transitioned from Otis begin trading on Public, marking the debut of the platform’s “Alternative Assets” vertical.
The 2022 Saint-Émilion Classification promotes Château Figeac to Premier Grand Cru Classé, realizing a long-anticipated catalyst for the vineyard’s wine values.
Goldin establishes a new record for a sealed VHS sale, as a first commercial release, big box copy of Star Wars from 1982 sells for $114,000, surpassing the prior record of $75,000.
Bloomberg reports that the SEC is probing Yuga Labs, creator of Bored Ape Yacht Club, to assess whether the company violated securities laws in selling NFTs.
Christie’s announces the launch of its new department, Christie’s Department X, which will focus on sneakers, streetwear, and collectibles. Among the first items expected to sell via private exhibition is the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Prototype, currently on the Rares fractional platform. Within weeks, Kanye West continues to unravel, Adidas terminates its Yeezy partnership, and Christie’s announces that it will no longer sell the sneakers.
Pharrell Williams launches auction platform JOOPITER, a digital platform meant to engage future generations of collectors.
Famed French artist Pierre Soulages passes away, aged 102. One month later, Masterworks sells one of his works, generating a 49% net IRR for shareholders. The platform sells six works in 2022.
The Paul Allen Collection sells for a record $1.6 billion at Christie’s across two auction events, quickly displacing the Macklowe Collection as the record holder. The evening event eclipses $1 billion within the first 32 lots, the first sale to accomplish such a feat. Five works reach nine-figure levels.
Christie’s calls off the sale of T-Rex skeleton Shen, which was estimated to draw $15-25 million in Hong Kong, after questions arose around representations made in sales materials.
Sotheby’s sells Michael Schumacher’s World Championship-winning Ferrari for $14.9 million, establishing a new record for a Formula 1 car by effectively double.
Luka Doncic’s National Treasures Rookie Logoman sells for $3,120,000 at PWCC, coming up short of the apparent $4.6 million private sale level from February 2021, near the height of the boom.
Heritage sells a poster from the February 3rd, 1959 Winter Dance Party for $447,000, a new record for any concert poster. February 3rd is known as “the day the music died”.
SBF and FTX happen. There’s not too much to say here that hasn’t already been said, but salt is poured in the wounds of an already difficult year in crypto.
Aaron Judge’s 62nd home run ball, the subject of so much intrigue throughout the fall, sells for $1.5 million at Goldin, well shy of an alleged $3 million offer.
After making history with a $43.2 million sale of a first print of the Constitution in November 2021, Sotheby’s and the consignor choose to withdraw the only other privately held first print from auction at the last moment. The withdrawal contrasts sharply with the DAO vs. Griffin battle in late 2021.
Trading card marketplace Alt sues Beckett, alleging negligent misrepresentation, as a Topps Chrome Stephen Curry Gold Refractor, graded BGS 9.5, was discovered to be trimmed. The card was purchased by Alt’s private card fund in October of 2020 for $168,000. The company is seeking $350,000 in damages.
Sotheby’s announces that it will sell LeBron James’s jersey from Game 7 of the 2013 NBA Finals, with an estimate of $3,000,000 - $5,000,000. It’s poised to become the most expensive LeBron jersey ever sold.
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