In American sports, there is no more wanted symbol of success than a Super Bowl ring. One piece of "bling" represents victory, overcoming obstacles, perseverance and teamwork and countless other things, depending on whose finger it encircles. All of which is amplified by the size they must be to fit the fingers of the men who wear them. And if the on-the-field stories behind rings are incredible, the off-the-field stories behind them often add to the legends.
Last summer, a Super Bowl ring became the center of an international political controversy. In 2005, Patriots owner Bob Kraft met Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg. Putin asked to see Kraft’s Super Bowl ring…and he put it in his pocket and never gave it back. Putin claimed it was a gift, and for a long time Kraft went along with the story. But last summer, reports emerged that Kraft never intended to give the ring to Putin. Sen. John McCain called on Putin to return it last September, but unless it has been secretly returned, the ring remains in Russia.