June 23, 2010
Sold: Henderson Jersey $1,275,707
Bidding for Paul Henderson's game worn 1972 Summit Series jersey exceeded $1 million. There have been 42 official bids. Even though the 9pm deadline passed, there is something called the 10 minute rule which allows established bidders to continue bidding amongst themselves until past 1am. At that point, the auction will end after 10 minutes of inactivity.
Mitchell Goldhar, owner of SmartCentres, one of Canada's largest developers of open-air shopping centres, is the new owner of the jersey. Jimmy Pattison stepped out of the bidding after it eclipsed the $1M mark. This was bad news for Henderson, as Pattison was bidding on Henderson's behalf so that the jersey could be donated to the new Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in Calgary.
So far there is no word on Goldhar's plans for the jersey. Classic Auctions president Marc Juteau did state that Goldhar wanted to "let Canadians benefit" and that he will likely "keep the jersey in Canada and on display somewhere."
Goldhar won the auction with a bid of $1,067,358. When you add on the 19.5% auction house commission the total purchase price rose to $1,275,707. That makes it the most valuable piece of sports memoribilia ever sold in public, surpassing Babe Ruth game worn New York Yankees jersey from 1933 that sold in 2006.
Henderson wore this same jersey for all four 1972 Summit Series games played in Moscow. He scored the game winning goals in the final three games, including dramatically in the decisive game eight with just 34 seconds left in the series.
This obviously far eclipses the highest priced hockey jersey at auction. A game worn Bobby Orr rookie jersey sold for $191,200 last year, while it has been reported that a Wayne Gretzky jersey was sold for $250,000 in a private transaction.
While this is both insane and wonderful, maybe someone should tell these guys you can buy a Paul Henderson Team Canada 1972 Authentic Hockey Jersey from many retail stores for a couple of hundred bucks.