Man sells rare pair of Nike sneakers for $50,000

California

SACRAMENTO (KTXL/CNN) – A California man made a killing on a pair of old Nikes.

The rare sneakers sold for a whopping $50,000.

Dave Russell sold the vintage pair of track shoes last month.

“I kind of had an idea what they were worth. [laughs] But it far exceeded that,” Russell said.

So, what exactly made the shoes so special?

For starters, they were given to Russell at the 1972 Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon.

Russell was 25 at the time and vying for a spot as a marathoner for Team USA.

The rare kicks – known as Moon Shoes for their waffle-like bottom – were actually among the first prototype shoes designed by Nike co-founder Bill Bowerman.

Only 12 of these Moon Shoes were ever made.

“They were very unorthodox shoes. They were very exotic, because the sole was completely different and made on a waffle iron. It was glued to the bottom of the shoe. The shoe was completely handmade. Oh, I loved them. They fit like a glove,” Russell said.

It wasn’t until a few months ago that Russell looked into selling the shoes, unloading them to a hotel chain who just so happened to be building a Nike-themed property in Eugene and wanted to put them on display.

“And they wanted something that would say this is ‘Nike Town,’ and here are these shoes that were the prototype before Nike was even really a public shoe,” he said.

Pretty good timing, right?

But even Russell still wonders.

“Who’d pay this kind of money for some funky, old shoes?” he laughed.

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