History of the NBA Finals Trophy

The original trophy for the NBA Championship Finals had been an ornate, oversized silver chalice bestowed upon the winner of each year’s NBA Finals champion to be kept for the year until the next year’s champions would gain possession. The Philadelphia Warriors were the first recipients of the trophy after defeating the Chicago Stags in 1947. The trophy had been renamed in honor of Walter A. Brown in 1964, shortly after his death, in honor of his contributions leading to the 1949 merger of the Basketball Association of America and National Basketball League into the National Basketball Association of today. The trophy was redesigned and became a trophy which from then on would be awarded to each year’s winning team for permanent possession beginning with the 1977 Finals, and the original was retired to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts.

The new design, sterling silver and vermeil trophy with a 24 karat gold overlay, standing at over two feet tall and weighing almost fifteen pounds, costs $13,500 to make each and is designed as an NBA regulation size basketball, nine inches in diameter on the cusp of entering the net, with a single rod extending from the base to the ball in order to convey the notion of a play in motion. The basketball of the trophy is actually hinged to open as a compartment that the winners traditionally use to enjoy chips and dip during their victory celebrations NYC ASIAN ESCORTS.

The winning team has its and its opponents name and its winning year engraved into the trophy, which is usually proudly displayed in the winning team’s home arena. Each year’s winners keep their trophies permanently, so each year, the Tiffany & Company Silver Shop must assemble a new trophy.

The first team to receive the newly designed, permanent award was the Portland Trailblazers after they defeated the Philadelphia 76ers in the 1977 NBA Finals. The last to receive the trophy under Walter A. Brown’s name was the Philadelphia 76ers after defeating the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1983 Finals, before the trophy was renamed once again in 1984.

The first team to win the sports award under its new name were the Boston Celtics, after winning against the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1984 NBA Playoffs.

Since 2004, the NBA has been taking active promotional measures to bring the Larry O’Brien Trophy to the iconic status of the historical sports trophies in other realms of professional athletics. That year, following the NBA Finals win by the Detroit Pistons, the trophy traveled around Michigan, touring around its winning team’s state for the first time. The following year, in 2005, an NBA Legends Tour was orchestrated to include stops scheduled in cities all over the nation escorted by former players like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Julius Irving, Walt “Clyde” Frazier, Moses Malone, and George Gervin, for fans to enjoy photo sessions and autograph opportunities, beginning in New York City. Stops from that point included that year’s playoff host cities as well as other cities, including Phoenix and Miami. In 2007, the promotional efforts went virtual, with the NBA establishing an NBA Headquarters within the Intern virtual-reality game of Second Life – where fans within the game would be able to pose in pictures alongside the trophy in the game’s Toyota Larry O’Brien Trophy Room, as well as access to a virtual T-Mobile Area, opportunities to purchase jerseys from the NBA Store for their avatars, and many more activities within the virtual game highlighting the sport. Recently, the trophy embarked upon an international excursion, for a two month long NBA Madness Asia Tour around six Asian countries, during which stops included such famous locations as Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Singapore, and the Philippines.

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