What bankruptcy taught former Colts star Gary Brackett – The Athletic


Editor’s Note: This story includes descriptions of suicidal thoughts. If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts or emotional distress, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK(8255) or suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

With each nod, the bid kept climbing, higher and higher. Eventually, Chris realized he wasn’t going to be able to nod any longer.

I HAVE FIFTY-FIVE, bellowed the auctioneer, HAVE I FIFTY-SEVEN FIVE?

As in $57,500.

Chris — an Indianapolis resident and die-hard Colts fan who doesn’t want his last name used — nodded again, knowing it might have been his best shot, maybe his last. He had been thinking about that day for a month, ever since he had read in the paper that a Colts ring from the 2006 Super Bowl was going up for sale. He’s not a collector; before that snowy Saturday in February, he had never even been to an auction before. But he loves the Colts. And he wanted this ring.

“I was fired up,” he admitted.

So he drove to Ripley’s Auctions, slid into a three-row seat from the front, and waited for lot 109. A few former ABA-era Pacers fell apart at the back, signing autographs. A wrinkled old warmup worn by Rik Smits went for $300. A bat used by Ken Griffey Jr. attracted $500. A pair of Nike worn by Michael Jordan, $9,500.

Finally, the crown jewel of the afternoon: “The first Super Bowl ring ever sold by Ripley’s Auctions,” the auctioneer told the room. Bidding started high and rose quickly.

Forty-five thousand, do I have forty-seven-five? He did. Forty-seven-five, do I have fifty? Fifty anyone?

He did. Chris nodded confidently from the third row, never raising his hand, never hesitating.


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