Muhammad Ali gloves go for $837K

Updated: February 23, 2014, 11:00 AM ET
By Dan Rafael | ESPN.com

The boxing gloves Muhammad Ali wore when he won the world heavyweight championship for the first time sold at auction for $836,500 on Saturday night.

The Heritage Auction took place almost 50 years to the day, Feb. 25, 1964, after Ali -- then known as Cassius Clay -- shook the world by stopping Sonny Liston, who quit on his stool after the sixth round in Miami Beach, Fla.

Muhammad Ali gloves
Courtesy of Heritage AuctionsThe gloves worn by Muhammad Ali in his first fight with Sonny Liston were sold at auction for $836,500.

The final price of the auctioned gloves included a 19.5 percent buyer's premium.

"These are the very gloves that Ali wore when he claimed his first heavyweight championship 50 years ago and, given the attention these received from media and fans all over the world, and the spectacular price they achieved, it's clear that Ali is just as loved and respected today as he's ever been," said Chris Ivy, director of sports collectibles at Heritage Auctions.

It was after that fight that Ali uttered two of his most famous quotes: "I am the greatest!" and "I shook up the world!"

The buyer of the gloves wished to remain anonymous.

"Only Jackie Robinson could compete with Ali for the title of most influential figure in American sports history," Ivy said. "But not even Robinson can compete with Ali in terms of being beloved internationally. Ali is a figure that transcends boxing or America. He belongs to the entire world."

The gloves were originally part of the estate of the late Hall of Fame trainer Angelo Dundee, Ali's longtime chief second.

After Dundee died in 2012, his son, Jim, put up much of his father's collection of boxing memorabilia for auction to help pay family medical bills. He also promised to donate a portion of the proceeds to the Muhammad Ali Foundation. The gloves, the highlight of the initial auction, sold for $385,848 in December 2012.

[+] EnlargeBabe Ruth
AP Photo/LM OteroBabe Ruth's 1943 World Series watch came with the inscription "Presented by Baseball Commissioner to George H. Ruth."

Ali's gloves weren't the only pieces of sports memorabilia sold at Saturday's Heritage Auction.

Babe Ruth's pocket watch from the 1923 World Series sold for $717,000. The timepiece was part of a set given to Ruth and his Yankees teammates after they beat their rivals, the New York Giants.

Heritage Auctions says the pentagonal 14-karat gold watch was bought by a telephone bidder who is remaining anonymous.

A 1911 game-used bat from "Shoeless" Joe Jackson sold for $956,000.

And the shattered bat of New York Mets catcher Mike Piazza that was tossed at him by New York Yankees pitcher Roger Clemens during the 2000 World Series went for $47,500.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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