Some notable items on the Lino's River North Ristorante menu include a 24-ounce aged T-Bone steak, a porcini mushroom-stuffed tortellini, and a mean scampi diavolo... not a bad selection. But on one menu from the Chicago-based Italian eatery, there's a bonus section: autographs.
And, no, they're not autographs from the chef or from the owner of the restaurant. They're autographs from Michael Jordan, Walter Payton, Richard Dent, Mike Tyson and Don King... how's that for a dinner party?
This very menu is hitting the auction block with Hindman Auctions, as the owners of this menu -- who were innocently eating at Lino's when they caught sight of the fame-filled table nearby and asked for signatures -- are ready to make some money off of their awesome collectable (via TMZ Sports).
The menu, from 1988, is expected to bring in up to tens of thousands of dollars at the auction when it goes up on October 20. Its value may also be increased because of the supposed fight that went down at that meal, as Tyson was "livid" with Jordan due to a potential love triangle. The following comes from Rory Holloway, Tyson's former trainer who wrote a memoir on his time with Iron Mike (via Phil Thompson of The Chicago Tribune):
"Like any guy, Mike has an ego; he used to hear these little rumors," Holloway said of Tyson. "The jealous side came out of him, exacerbated by the drinking. ... Here's Mike, who's not a drinker, drinking Long Island iced teas. It's almost like a little kid getting drunk for first time."
Holloway continued, "I see Mike tense up. Tyson's reputation at the time is the baddest man on the planet. He starts, 'I know you (had sex with) her.' (Jordan) was waiting for Mike to either laugh or say something. Michael Jordan don't seem like he knew how to take it but he knows, 'I don't want this guy to swing across the table.' "
The night has been recalled by Holloway, Dent and even Mike Ditka, and the outcomes are different. Dent shot down Ditka's version, which would make sense if Ditka wasn't even there (and explain the absence of his autograph). But, for what it's worth, Ditka called the story "silly" and denied any sort of fight.
Whatever actually happened may never be known. But the fact that this piece of memorabilia is up for grabs and was from a night that gathered some of sports' greatest figures together all at once -- with a potential dose of controversy -- is a pretty cool thing to consider.
Break out those wallets.