New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft told an audience Thursday night that Russian President Vladimir Putin stole his Super Bowl ring.
It was the good one, too, from Super Bowl XXXIX in 2005 when the Pats beat the Philadelphia Eagles 24-21.
It happened while Kraft and other American executives toured Russia after the team’s NFL championship season.
Putin greeted the execs during a stop in St. Petersburg, the New York Post reported:
“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,’” Kraft said at the Carnegie Hall’s Medal of Excellence gala at the Waldorf-Astoria. “I put my hand out and he put it in his pocket, and three KGB guys got around him and walked out.”
Left empty-handed, Kraft concocted a story then that said he bestowed the ring to Putin as a “symbol of the respect and admiration that I have for the Russian people.”
“I have ancestors from Russia, so it added significance for me to know that something so cherished would reside at the Kremlin along with other special gifts given to Russian presidents,” Kraft said then, according to Boston's WEEI radio.
The truth came out this week, however, that Kraft called the George W. Bush administration looking for help.
They suggested it would be beneficial to everyone if Kraft swallowed the $25,000, 4.94-carat diamond ring.
Rumor has it the ring sits on display inside the Kremlin library.