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William ‘Refrigerator’ Perry Super Bowl ring sells for $200,000

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Everything about former Bears lineman William “Refrigerator” Perry was big, including his size 25 Super Bowl XX ring, which sold Thursday night at an auction for $203,150.

The ring was up for bidding as part of Heritage Auctions’ Platinum Night Sports Auction, held in conjunction with the 2015 National Sports Collectors Convention in Rosemont.

Despite being a rookie on the Bears 1985 Super Bowl Championship team, the 320-pound Perry became a national sensation when coach Mike Ditka used him as a running back.

“It’s fitting a super-size ring generated a super-size auction price,” said Chris Ivy, director of sports collectibles at Heritage Auctions. “This is by far one of the most unique examples of Chicago sports memorabilia as there ever was.”


Here’s how auctioneer’s describe the ring:

The 10 karat gold and diamond encrusted ring is the largest NFL Championship ring ever produced and was gifted to Perry after the Chicago Bears’ Super Bowl XX 46-10 championship over the New England Patriots.

The perimeter of the ring is marked: “1985 Chicago Bears World Champions” as the left shank announces “Perry” above a figural helmet and text reporting, “16-1, GSH, Attitude.” The ring’s right shank immortalizes the game’s lopsided score, “Bears 46 Patriots 10″ above the logos of Super Bowl XX and the NFC, and a figural Lombardi Trophy.



As with several sports collectibles, Perry’s Super Bowl ring is not without mystery. The ring reportedly sold for $27,000 at auction in 2007. Four years later, a Perry SB ring was bought for $8,500 in New York by a 10-year-old boy, who later in an act of kindness returned it to Perry for some autographed memorabilia. Most experts believe that ring was a replica.

Perry played nine seasons with the Bears and two with the Eagles. With his weight in excess of 400 pounds since retiring, Perry has battled health problems, including Guillain-Barre syndrome and alcoholism. Last year, it was reported Perry owed $26,000 in back taxes and was about to lose his home.

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