Vladimir Putin Actually Did Steal New England Patriots Owner’s Super Bowl Ring

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DV1372655Photo: Alexei Nikolsky/AFP/Getty Images

Back in 2005, New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft met Russian President Vladimir Putin during a meeting of American businessmen in St. Petersburg. He was such a good guest that he let Putin try on his Super Bowl ring, and Putin was such a bizarre host that he pocked the $25,000 piece of jewelry. At the time, Kraft claimed that he decided to give Putin (who he praised as a "great and knowledgeable sports fan") the ring "as a symbol of the respect and admiration that I have for the Russian people and [his] leadership." But, now that some time has passed, Kraft is comfortable going on record with what really happened. The New York Post reports that he described the incident to the crowd at Carnegie Hall’s Medal of Excellence gala on Friday night. "I took out the ring and showed it to [Putin], and he put it on and he goes, 'I can kill someone with this ring.' I put my hand out and he put it in his pocket, and three KGB guys got around him and walked out," he explained. Kraft's attempt to get the 124-diamond bauble back were thwarted by representatives from the Bush the administration, who told him, "'It would really be in the best interest of US-Soviet relations if you meant to give the ring as a present.'" And there you have it.