CLOSE
Getty Images
Getty Images

Who Is Larry O'Brien?

Getty Images
Getty Images

The Spurs are your NBA champions. Who's that guy whose name is on the trophy?

The NBA's championship trophy made its debut in its current form in 1978. It was originally called the Walter A. Brown Trophy, a nod to the former Celtics owner whose name had been on the league's previous championship bling. In 1984, the league renamed the trophy to honor outgoing NBA commissioner Larry O'Brien. O'Brien, who served as commissioner from 1975-84, was previously the Postmaster General under Lyndon Johnson and a chairman of the Democratic National Committee. He passed away in 1990.

The trophy itself is around two feet high and depicts a regulation-sized basketball going into a net. The Tiffany-designed trophy is made of sterling silver with a 24-carat gold overlay and weighs over 14 pounds. According to the league, each trophy is worth an estimated $13,500.

See Also: 10 Near-Trades That Would've Changed NBA History

nextArticle.image_alt|e
Woohae Cho, Getty Images
arrow
olympics
6 New Events Will Debut At This Year’s Winter Olympics in PyeongChang
Woohae Cho, Getty Images
Woohae Cho, Getty Images

It’s that time again! The 2018 Winter Olympic Games will kick off in PyeongChang, South Korea on February 9, and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is adding a handful of new events to the festivities. In 2014, 12 new events—including Men’s and Women’s Ski Half-Pipe and Biathlon Mixed Relay—were added to make the Sochi Games more challenging and exciting. This year, six new events will make their debut in PyeongChang.

Here’s what’s new for 2018: While it started out as an X-Games event, extreme athletes will now get their chance to win gold medals in Men’s and Women’s Snowboard Big Air, which sees competitors performing their best spins and tricks after launching off a large (about 160 feet) ramp. For the first time, the Alpine skiing Nations Team Event will make its debut; the event features mixed teams of two men and two women going head-to-head in a series of downhill slalom races in a best-of-four competition.

Next up, Men’s and Women’s Speed Skating Mass Start features a maximum of 28 athletes in a 16-lap race, where all participants start at the same time with winner-takes-all stakes. Speed Skating Mass Start first appeared during the Lake Placid games in 1932, but has sat out the Winter Olympics in the 85 years since, so it's prepared to make a triumphant return.

Lastly, there's Curling Mixed Doubles. The new event consists of teams of two, a man and a woman, competing in a curling match with eight ends and five stones, instead of the traditional 10 and eight, respectively. In addition, there’s a 22-minute limit to get a team’s stones closest to the center button of the house.

The Opening Ceremony of the XXIII Olympic Winter Games will air on NBC beginning at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on Friday, February 9, 2018.

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
arrow
video
Watch These Surfers Crush Nantucket's 'Slurpee' Waves
iStock
iStock

Instead of hunkering down with Netflix and hot chocolate during the East Coast’s recent cold snap, surfers Nick Hayden and Jamie Briard spent the first few days of January 2018 conquering icy waves in Nantucket, Massachusetts. The frothy swells resembled a frozen 7-Eleven Slurpee, so photographer Jonathan Nimerfroh, a friend of the athletes, grabbed his camera to capture the phenomenon, according to deMilked.

The freezing point for salt water is 28.4°F, but undulating ocean waves typically move too much for ice particles to form. At Nantucket’s Nobadeer Beach, however, conditions were just right for a thick layer of frost to form atop the water’s surface for several hours. Some of the slushy crests were even surfable before melting after about three hours, Nimerfroh told Live Science.

This is the second time Nimerfroh has photographed so-called “Slurpee waves." He captured a similar scene on February 27, 2015, telling The New York Times, “I saw these crazy half-frozen waves. Usually on a summer day you can hear the waves crashing, but it was absolutely silent. It was like I had earplugs in my ears.”

Check out Nimerfroh’s video of surfers enjoying the icy swell below.

[h/t deMilked]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios