The WNBA is midway through its season, and like many other professional American sports leagues, it took a midseason break to play the league’s all-star game between its best players.
But the league’s celebration of its top stars hasn’t gotten as much attention on social media for the plays on the court as it has for people criticizing the small trophy given to the game’s MVP, Kelsey Plum. A post claiming the trophy could be bought online for $18 went viral on both Twitter and Facebook.
Did the WNBA award All-Star MVP Kelsey Plum an $18 trophy?
Store pages for trophies on K2 Awards, Oldani Brothers and Thomas Dale Co.
No, the WNBA did not award All-Star MVP Kelsey Plum an $18 trophy.
WHAT WE FOUND
On July 10, WNBA player Kelsey Plum won the All-Star MVP award after scoring a record-tying 30 points in the annual exhibition game. The WNBA presented her with a small, silver trophy cup. The WNBA confirmed to VERIFY that the trophy was created for the league by luxury jewelry brand Tiffany & Co., and did not cost $18. The WNBA did not share the actual price of the trophy.
Tiffany & Co. creates championship and MVP trophies for many of the biggest sporting events in the United States, including the championship trophies for the MLB, NBA, NFL and WNBA.
The company says its craftspeople create 65 custom trophies each year. Each trophy is stamped with “T & CO MAKERS,” a unique pattern number and other hallmarks. Tiffany & Co.’s trophy designs are not sold to consumers.
The products Tiffany & Co. does sell through retail are often expensive. For example, Tiffany & Co. sells this 3-inch-tall silver wine cup for $600, and this 5-inch-tall silver candle holder for more than $3,000.
In the viral social media post, there is a screenshot of a Google search for “trophy cup silver” with the search engine’s shopping results displayed. The screenshot shows a trophy sold for $18 by K2 Awards, and is listed as “Elegant Silver Metal Cup Trophy 6 Inches at K2 Awards.”
The K2 Awards trophy in the tweet looks similar to the All-Star MVP trophy, but is not the same. A larger picture of the WNBA trophy clearly shows a few differences aside from the engraving, such as different designs for the top and handles of the trophy.
K2 Awards does sell a trophy for $18, but it’s not the trophy featured in the viral tweet. That $18 trophy is called the “Elegant Silver Metal Cup Trophy 6 Inches at K2 Awards” and is an open cup shape as opposed to the closed cup of the WNBA trophy and the trophy in the tweet.
The trophy in the tweet that appears to be from a Google search is one that actually sells from $350 to $995, depending on the size of the trophy and the retailer selling it.
So we can VERIFY that the viral tweet is false; the alleged $18 trophy shown in the tweet was actually made by a different retailer and is more expensive than $18. And that trophy is not the trophy given to WNBA All-Star MVP Kelsey Plum; Plum was gifted a trophy created by luxury silver brand Tiffany & Co. that is not available for retail purchase.
More from VERIFY: No, top-tier WNBA players don’t make $20 an hour