When you’re talking about Michael Jordan’s NBA Playoff basketball career, every conversation evokes moments of greatness but happened on the 11th of June 1997 really set use standards.
The Bulls, after taking the first two games in the 1997 NBA Finals, were now tied 2-2 with the Jazz heading into a pivotal fifth game in Utah. As fans around the globe tuned in, news broke that Michael Jordan was suffering from “flu-like symptoms” and was extremely sick, but would attempt to play in the game anyway. Not only did Jordan play in the game but he played 44 minutes, scoring 38 points, and giving birth to the “Flu Game” legend.
As time passed and the legend of the “Flu Game” grew, new information became public. It was the understanding that Jordan wasn’t suffering from the flu itself that night, but instead was hit with a bad case of food poisoning.
This performance led to the shoes he wore in the game becoming known as the “Flu Games.” It took a colorway that wasn’t as popular when it first released and made it a must-have staple in every Jordan fan’s collection.
To date, we have seen three versions of the “Flu Game” Air Jordan 12 release to the public. While the 2003 retro version stayed pretty close to its 1997 inspiration, the 2009 retro departed far from the original, changing the black upper to a suede-like material, and adding a “sick face” logo as well as the numbers 97 and 38 to represent the year and points MJ scored in the game. Longtime fans were not happy with the changes despite the shoes being an instant sellout and still going for almost three times their retail price six years later.
In 2013 the original signed “ Flu Game “ Air Jordan 12 from 1997 was auctioned for $104,765 by Preston Truman.
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