Game Over? Recent Jewelry Heists Involving Pro Athletes.

Few people today make as much money, generate as much publicity or frequently enjoy life’s riches quite like professional athletes.


And in our era of social media and celebrity obsession, more and more stories of athletes’ off-the-field adventures and exploits come to light than ever before. Including tales that involve their jewelry.


Long known for an affinity towards high-quality, big-ticket and often custom-crafted jewelry, athletes and gilded accessories have a long, colorful and costly tradition together. Recently, a pair of high-profile athletes from two of America’s major professional sports leagues found themselves in the headlines because they had been separated from their jewelry collections.


The circumstances surrounding these two stories vary a good bit. But one common denominator exists:


It makes smart sense to have jewelry insurance to fall back on – regardless of your “baller status” or overall degree of “swag.” Because as these two tales make very clear...you just never know – until you know.


The Young NFL Running Back & His Home “Invasion”


Star running back Le’Veon Bell made all kinds of headlines prior to and during the 2018 NFL season, as his contract battles with the Pittsburgh Steelers led to him sitting out the entire campaign. Newly minted as a New York Jet this past offseason, Bell found himself in the news over a different set of financial circumstances.


This story had a little bit of everything, really. Sex. Money. Drama. Intrigue. Romance...or something like that. A home invasion...or something like that. Even a 911 call. According to multiple reports, Bell had more than half a million dollars’ worth of jewelry (estimated by Hollywood, FL police as valued at $547,600, per one report) swiped from his own South Florida home in late May, 2019. The culprits? A pair of women, identified in the police report as his “girlfriends.”


Bell signed a four-year, $52.5 million contract with the Jets in March, but like anyone, he no doubt had some unquantifiable sentimental and emotional value attached to his pilfered jewelry – especially when you read about how cool it sounds:


*Two gold Cuban link chains with diamonds

*A two-tone rose gold-and-white gold Cuban link bracelet

*A gold chain with a Black Panther pendant studded with black-and-white diamonds

*A rose gold Rolex Presidential watch


Neither of the stories addressed whether or not Bell had taken the time to insure any of the handful of pricey pieces before they were taken from his home by the two girls. The story serves as a powerful reminder that even in the comfort of your own home, it’s not unheard of for your valued jewelry to suddenly go missing.


The Retired MLB Great & His Rental Car Mishap


During his remarkable yet controversial Major League Baseball career, Alex “A-Rod” Rodriguez also made many headlines – with many of them also involving his romantic dalliances and misadventures. Now that the retired slugger broadcasts MLB games for ESPN, we continue to hear from and about A-Rod from time to time.


Rodriguez earned more than $450 million in contracts alone (not counting off-field endorsements) during his 22-season MLB career, including an infamous 10-year, $252-million contract from the Texas Rangers in 2000. There’s no doubt that A-Rod has more than enough money to splurge on jewelry, and a recent story confirmed just that – in a way that the baseball legend probably would have preferred to keep private.


In mid-August, while Rodriguez was working a San Francisco Giants-Philadelphia Phillies game with the ESPN Sunday Night Baseball broadcast crew, a thief used a baseball bat for something much more nefarious than hitting a home run (Rodriguez smashed 696 in his legendary career, behind only Barry Bonds, Hank Aaaron and Babe Ruth). The bat shattered the windshield of Rodriguez’s rented SUV, which was parked on the streets of San Francisco, about three blocks outside the entrance to the Giants’ Oracle Park. The prize found inside? According to some reports, more than half-a-million dollars in jewelry and electronics.


In this particular case, the San Francisco Police Department classified their report as confidential, so no details emerged about the particulars of the jewelry stolen.


“It’s an unfortunate situation,” ESPN officials said in a statement. “We are working with local authorities to address it.”


These types of things can happen when you travel with your jewelry, no matter who you are. Again, we’re not sure if Rodriguez had invested in jewelry insurance, but we’re quite confident that if he did not, he ended up regretting this oversight – no matter how much money he has in the bank.


Coverage: Important in Sports. Vital in Jewelry.


Sure, you’re not a “big baller” with millions of dollars in the bank (if you are, we apologize for the oversight). But you value your jewelry pieces, just as Bell and Rodriguez do (or in their unfortunate cases, did). While these two examples may be somewhat extreme, they illustrate an important universal truth: there’s simply too much at stake when it comes to your treasured jewelry pieces to not insure them. Beyond the often extensive financial value, there’s all the “emotional equity” and sentimental value that goes into your valuable and valued treasures.


Bell or Rodriguez may never truly replace their valued jewelry pieces. But if they did have jewelry insurance, they’d at least be able to come close...and start fresh with new pieces. If they, or you, don’t have insurance, you won’t really be able to make that kind of a fresh start.


When you’re ready to insure your valued jewelry piece or pieces, we encourage you to visit us here at Zillion to learn more. We offer specialized jewelry insurance that offers better coverage, transparency and ease, all at affordable rates.


You can also dig into our blog post entitled “The Ultimate Jewelry Insurance Guide” to get more details on insuring your prized possessions.

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