The Toronto Raptors received the biggest championship rings in NBA history and unfurled a banner celebrating their victory in a ceremony before the team’s season opener against the New Orleans Pelicans on Tuesday night.
Drake, the Raptors’ ambassador, also received a ring.
According to Associated Press, “the rings each contain more than 650 diamonds as well as 16 rubies, representing the number of playoff victories required to win the title. On the face of the ring, diamonds form the Toronto skyline above the word ‘North’ spelled out in diamonds inside a golden chevron.”
Peter Kanis, CEO of Baron Championship Rings, joined the Kelly Cutrara Show on Global News Radio 640 Toronto to discuss the championship ring.
“We’re very excited about it . The last two months, we’ve been creating these rings and getting ready for this night so that’s why I’m relaxed now,” Kanis said. “All the pressure is behind us so it’s just about enjoying the moment.”
Kanis told Cutrara he wasn’t sure if Drake had a part in designing the championship ring, but “Kyle Lowry definitely” did.
Drake took to Instagram on Tuesday ahead of the season opener to show off his ring and a second customized NBA championship ring, estimated to be valued at over $150,000.
The ring, created by Jason Arasheben of Beverly Hills, has the head of the original Raptor logo and “The Boy” written across the side.
“Drake had me fly to Turks and Caicos for an emergency design meeting,” Arasheben told TMZ.
“This was a championship that was dear to his heart,” Arasheben said. “ wanted to create an over-the-top ring that not only paid homage to his city but that made a statement above and beyond anything else in history.”
Toronto tailor Garrison Bespoke designed and gifted the jacket to the Toronto-born rapper with 235 diamonds hand-embroidered into the shape of the OVO (October’s Very Own) owl.
Raptors president Masai Ujiri presented the jacket to Drake in May before Game 4 between the Raptors and the Bucks, but Garrison Bespoke owner and founder Michael Nguyen made it clear that Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE) did not pay for the jacket.
The jacket was actually “gifted to the team and to Drake by Garrison and was not paid for by MLSE,” according to Nguyen.
“It’s about $747,000 at today’s exchange rate,” Nguyen said of the price of the gift. The owl eyes are each 1.2 carats.
“The Raptors asked for a surprise to be made. We are huge fans and wanted to celebrate by creating a memorable gift with our collaboration partners Diamond Foundry and Dormeiul,” Garrison Bespoke marketing chief David Tran said to Huffpost. “Ever since the original Drake commission, it’s been an annual tradition and is always presented at the game.”
The jacket has a custom lining, which is the black-and-gold OVO Raptors jersey that Drake helped to design.
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We are so thrilled to have partnered with @garrisonbespoke to create this one-of-a-kind custom piece for @champagnepapi presented by Toronto @raptors President, Masai Ujiri. The jacket is made from 100 year old deadstock jersey cloth from the House of Dormeuil’s private collection and adorned with 235 diamonds created by #diamondfoundry 💎 #torontoraptors #drake #wethenorth #custom #ovo #nba
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