Last night saw possibly one of the most prestigious sneaker purchases in history occur at NikeTown in London; the auction of the UK pair of 2011 Nike MAGs.
As if the concept of this auction wasn’t exciting enough already, people were greeted by a DMC DeLorean parked outside the staff entrance to NikeTown, fully equipped with all the flashing lights and the Flux Capacitor (of course). Back To The Future music was blaring out of the car with the occasional burst of smoke from the back (you may remember this from when Doc Brown puts “fuel” in his car).
Once the doors opened, the select crowd of roughly 60 guests made their way up to the second floor, where the usual array of drinks were on offer to help calm the nerves of the fortunate bidders and the rest of us super-fans. Taking pride of place inside the Nike iD studio was what everyone had come for; a 2011 Nike MAG collectors pack, one of only 10 that come in the full presentation box, this being the only pair to land on our fine shores. There was a definite buzz to the room. An unspoken knowledge that we were all here to witness a rather substantial part of sneaker history.
As the tension and excitement rose, people started making their way to the seats, equipped with Back For The Future themed bidding paddles. When everyone was seated, the Nike MAG trailer video was played on the big screen before a personal message of thanks from Michael J. Fox himself, clutching a MAG in one hand. The London MAGs made their way to front of the stage and a very entertaining auctioneer joined them, dressed in a pretty nuts waistcoat. Before the MAG auction began, it was announced that a special ceramic MAG with a signed box by the CEO of Nike would be auctioned first. This helped to up the hype, as no one was expecting it, and was very quickly snapped up for £2,000 after two bidders had a bidding war from £500 upwards.
Then the time came, the moment everyone had been waiting for; the MAGs went on sale. Starting at £1,000, the price quickly rose to £3,000 and hovered there for a little while. It was a bit of an odd occurrence, as most of us thought that they may actually go for as little as £3,000, but the auctioneer did his job far to well and before we knew it we were climbing up the price ladder again. Another bidding war took place between two bidders before they were sold off for £8,000 to the same chap who purchased the signed ceramic (Mr. 1964, as pictured below). It turns out that Mr. 1964 is actually the head buyer from Office and Offspring – an experienced sneaker purchaser, as proven by his bidding skills.
All in all, the event went incredibly smoothly, as predicted, but there didn’t seem to be as much of a desperation to get the pair as I expected, perhaps because this was the last auction, or perhaps because most people’s personal spend limit was surpassed very quickly. It’s a shame to say that that’s the end of the 2011 Nike MAG hype train, but damn has it been a good ride, and I’m honored to have been able to see a pair up close and personal.
Bring on 2015!