Michael Jordan‘s rookie season is an unforgettable one in many sneakerhead’s minds. The memories of the NBA attempting to ban his Air Jordan 1 for not including enough white in the infamous ‘Bred’ colorway is a legendary tale itself. Pair that with the overall classic aesthetic of his first signature and the 1984-1985 NBA season isn’t going anywhere in the recollections of any basketball fans. MJ didn’t wear the Air Jordan 1 for the entirety of his debut season though, as he started his rookie campaign in the Nike Air Ship.
When a Los Angeles Lakers ball-boy saw Michael Jordan wearing the sneaker during warm-ups in December of 1984, he was brash enough to break protocol and ask Jordan for the shoes. Now over thirty years later, that same ball boy, Khalid Ali, dusted the pair off from its hiding place in his parent’s closet and is selling them at auction. Khalid ended up holding onto the shoes once he saw Michael Jordan getting past Michael Cooper with ease throughout the game. It was then that the ball boy knew MJ, even as a rookie, was going to be special. His foresight paid off. Watch Ali tell the story of the sneakers in an interview below.