- 07.11.13 07:48 AM EDT
Kraft confirmed a long-held rumor at a gala on Thursday that Putin stole his Super Bowl XXXIX championship ring after trying it on at a meeting. In Kraft's version of events, Putin noticed he could "kill someone with this ring," put it in his pocket (despite Kraft's hand being out) and let his KGB friends escort him out. Even when Kraft wanted to ask for it back, he alleges that the Bush White House asked that he let it go for international relations.
Putin and his team maintain that the ring was offered as a present. Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said, "I was standing 20 centimeters away from him and Mr. Putin and saw and heard how Mr. Kraft gave this ring as a gift." The ring remains at the Kremlin library.
Sure, it could have been a simple misunderstanding based on a language barrier between the two men. But either way, the newly single Putin has a $25,000, one-of-a-kind ring to put on it.