LOS ANGELES — Laker Nation will have to wait to see their 17th championship banner raised inside the Staples Center, but the opening night of the NBA season last December meant a remembrance of the 2020 team with the presentation of their championship rings.
To make sure the Lakers would receive their unique memento, the team knew exactly who to reach out to — the same person responsible for their last championship ring in 2010 — Jason Arasheben, owner of Jason of Beverly Hills.
“I grew up loving basketball. I remember being like 7 years old, 8 years old, and my mother thought I was crazy because when the Lakers would lose, I would start crying. Growing up such a huge Laker fan, I’m truly, truly passionate about this ring,” Arabeshen said.
To draw inspiration for this year’s championship ring design, Arabeshen looked at all the factors that contributed to the story of the team’s winning season.
“You have the 52-19 regular-season record. The playoff record. The fact that this is a legendary organization with 17 championships. You cannot forget the Kobe and Gigi factor, and we want to be able to pay homage to him in the ring,” Arabeshen said. “Leave a legacy — a well-known motto of the team this year. These are a lot of the elements that called out to us, and I think it was important to have all of these elements built into the design.”
Some of the ways Arabeshen included these storytelling elements in the final ring design are 17 trophies outlining the ring and 17 Laker purple amethyst stones representing 17 championships. He also made sure each player’s number had a mamba snake behind it to pay homage to Kobe Bryant.
For a standard championship ring order, Arabeshen and his team usually have around four months to develop and manufacture the ring. However, given the quick turnaround of the 2020-21 NBA season, they had less than half the usual time to complete the order before the celebration ceremony.
“This is a year like no other, I am proud to say that we were able to not only design the ring but finish manufacturing the entire order in about three-and-a-half to four weeks,” Arabeshen said.
One of Arabeshen’s signature elements for a championship ring is to include a unique detail for the team that makes each championship ring special.
“In this ring, we have a feature where it’s a removable top where inside it features all of the retired jerseys of the ex- Lakers with a special emphasis placed on Kobe’s two jerseys [8 and 24],” Arabeshen said. “That is the great thing about championship rings; you have a lot of real-estate to tell such a great story. When I look at these rings, it’s like opening a history book.”
The Lakers received their championship rings on December 22, 2020, before their first game of the 2020-21 season, and each was surprised with a virtual congratulation message from their families.