The Lakers ring ceremony last night was a touching and heartfelt tribute to a season of upheaval, resolve, and ultimately, victory.
In a stadium devoid of fans due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Los Angeles decided to keep their banner hidden until fans could be there to join in. But the Lakers players and staff did get their rings.
And, with the difficulty of less ambiance without cheering fans in the background, the Lakers did a beautiful job in making the ceremony feel what it had to be: special.
Prerecorded videos played, having each player and staff’s family introducing them and congratulating them on their championship.
It was such a beautiful moment to watch them see their loved ones present them with the pinnacle of what it means to be an athlete: a championship ring.
And it was these Lakers rings, the most expensive and elaborately crafted rings of all time, that stole the show.
The Lakers ring was crafted with the finest detail
The Lakers’ 17th championship ring is special. Not just the fact that it ties the franchise with the Celtics for most rings in the NBA, but it is what went into the ring that takes our breath away.
The rings have a removable top that reveals the retired Lakers jerseys (Kobe Bryant, with 8 and 24, has two). The Lakers ring has a mamba snake behind players’ number to honor Kobe.
The word “UNITY” is etched into the rings, a social justice message that represents much of what the NBA bubble was about. Furthermore, the rings say “Leave A Legacy,” a reference to the Lakers’ playoff slogan. And there are 804 stones and 16.5 carats inside of each Lakers ring. That’s a lot of mining.
The rings were crafted with fine detail, care, and attention. And of course love, as 2020 was perhaps the most strenuous NBA season, especially for the Lakers, in NBA history.
Who created the Lakers rings?
Jason Arasheben, otherwise known as Jason of Beverly Hills, was the architect beyond this exceptional ring.
In a normal year, he would have had months to craft the symbolic token to represent a year of struggle to eventually achieve the ultimate goal. But just like everything in 2020, this time it would be more difficult.
Because of the shortened offseason, Jason had just a month to craft the ring for the opening night ring ceremony.
Jason of Beverly Hills has created rings for six NBA title winners, including three previous Lakers teams. But this time, like always, was different.
“Every ring has to have an identity of its own because every team has an identity of its own and every season has an identity of its own.”Jason of Beverly Hills
Along with Jason, came poppin’ streetwear designer Don C to help out.
The Lakers rings represent a year like no other
It wouldn’t have been abnormal or all too surprising if, in the short offseason, the Lakers’ rings were underwhelming.
Hell, that’s how this whole year has felt in large part outside of travesty. You take what you can get, and be thankful for that.
A good life lesson sure, but a bitter pill to swallow, especially as it would be for champions.
But Jason of Beverly Hills, Chicago Don C, and company crafted a ring that is anything but underwhelming. The Lakers newest ring is extravagant, it is touching, and it is beautiful.
In many senses, it represents 2020 well.
The Lakers family and world lost Kobe Bryant. The league shut down because of the pandemic, and the Lakers cheers after winning the championship largely fell on deaf ears as fans were not allowed to be in attendance.
But these rings are special. And they offer a chance for the whole Lakers franchise, upon seeing them, to take a nostalgic glimpse into where they were just a year before, what they went through, and how they emerged as champions on the other side.