The ball that caused Deflategate was recently sold for $44,000. Though it is certainly an astronomical price for a football, the buyer didn’t have to break the bank to secure a scandalous piece of football history.
An anonymous buyer bought one of the footballs used by the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game, which was proven to be underinflated. The deflategate ball was placed on the auction through auction house Lelands.com. The ball’s bidding started at $25,000 and, although there were only five bids in total, the final selling price of the football was $43,739.99. Interestingly, chairman of Lelands.com, Joshua Evans, thought it might fetch as much as $100,000, which raises the question: Did the buyer get a good deal?
The ball belonged to Laura Nichols, who was in the stands at that game. She received it at the hands of Patriots wide receiver Brandon LaFell after New England’s LeGarrette Blount scored a touchdown. After Blount dropped the ball on the ground, LaFell picked it up and handed it to Nichols, reported CSNNE. Needless to say, the ball is a pretty important piece of NFL history. But as the world was to discover a short while later, the ball was to make even bigger history than being used to score a touchdown.
However, it’s unclear whether it was one of the footballs used in the first half of the game that led to the Deflategate controversy, reported Washington Post. In fact, the ball that was sold for $44,000 was among 11 others that were reportedly re-inflated at halftime. Working on a tip-off, officials verified the air pressure of the balls that were provided by the Patriots and, indeed, discovered that some of them were underinflated. An independent investigation indicated it was quite possible that the team was aware their footballs were illegally underinflated.
Though the ball may not be the one that was used while being underinflated, it was used during an event that caused and coined the term Deflategate. There are very slim chances that such tricks would be attempted in the near future, which definitely adds value and rarity.
However, such infamous sports memorabilia have sold for a much higher price in the past, reported Forbes. One prominent example includes the ball that might have caused the Chicago Cubs a World Series entry, which went for $113,000. Considering other similar examples, the buyer indeed seems to have gotten a great deal, buying the Deflategate ball for $44,000.
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