Monthly Archives: August 2017

Kevin Durant Parades The Larry O’Brien Trophy Through Hometown

Thursday, August 17, 2017 was Kevin Durant Day in his hometown in Prince George’s County. Kevin Durant was honored with his very own day, riding down Seat Pleasant Drive in a silver Corvette, greeting fans with the Larry O’Brien Trophy. The Golden State Warriors won their second NBA championship in three years – earning them this famous, iconic award.

It might not have been the image of Kevin Durant parading through his hometown while holding the Larry O’Brien championship trophy that Wizards fans had hoped for when Durant was the league’s most sought after free agent last summer. But needless to say, they were excited to have him home.

Durant, who has donated over one million dollars to the community, greeted every fan so they could take pictures and sign autographs, of which there were an estimated 20,000 that showed up to take part in the festivities. The money goes toward improving the local basketball courts and gyms, where Durant himself played when he was younger.

Parading through the streets that he grew up in and hoisting a trophy like that must have been surreal for Durant. All the children in attendance who look up to him, both literally and figuratively, would normally only dream of winning such a trophy. But Kevin Durant is living proof that dreams can come true.

The trophy is named after Larry O’Brien, who was the commissioner of the National Basketball Association from 1975 to 1984. During his nine years serving as commissioner, O’Brien completed several important deals that catapulted basketball into the national spotlight, helping it become the popular sport it is today. Such deals include the infamous ABA-NBA merger, modifications to the college draft, an anti-drug agreement with the NBA Players Association, as well as many other significant changes that improved the League. If it weren’t for him, we might not ever have heard of a player like Kevin Durant.

Playing with fellow superstars Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green, Durant has a great opportunity to bring this trophy home for the next few years and the Warriors can go down in the history books as a true dynasty.

Hopefully, someday soon, we’ll see the likes of Claude Giroux, Joel Embiid, or Carson Wentz parading through PA with trophies and awards.

If you’re interested in personalized products and awards like medals, trophies, and plaques in NJ and PA, visit Spike’s Trophies!

Carson Wentz & The Eagles – 2016 Review/2017 Preview

With the NFL preseason in full swing, Philadelphians are counting down the days until the regular season begins in Washington on Sunday, September 10. Looking to lead the Eagles for his second straight year, is quarterback Carson Wentz.

Wentz was drafted second overall in the 2016 NFL Draft. The original plan was for him to sit and learn his first season, but those plans changed when the Eagles traded away quarterback Sam Bradford.

Ups and Downs

Carson and the Eagle’s 2016 started off promising. He made his first regular season start in Week 1 against the Browns. Wentz threw for 278 passing yards and 2 touchdowns, leading to a 29–10 win, receiving the Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Week honor – which he also earned in Weeks 3 and 5.

The next week, Wentz threw for 190 yards and a touchdown in a 29–14 victory over the Bears, becoming the first rookie quarterback since 1970 to win his first two games of the season without throwing an interception.

In Week 3 against the Steelers, Wentz finished with 301 passing yards and 2 touchdowns leading the Eagles to a 34-3 victory, earning the title of NFC Offensive Player of the Week, as well as NFL Offensive Rookie of the Month.

After their Week 4 bye, the Eagles lost 9 of their last 13 games, missing the playoffs for the third consecutive season. They finished the season with 7 wins and 9 losses.

Wentz finished with 16 touchdowns and 14 interceptions on the season. He threw 379 completions, simultaneously setting a rookie record and a franchise record. Although, he also set the single-season franchise record with 607 pass attempts, which is the second most attempts by a rookie in league history.

Their running backs were solid if unexceptional, with Ryan Mathews leading the way. It was the lack of talent and experience at wide receiver that held them back. Wentz depended on tight end Zach Ertz and running back Darren Sproles for many of his passes.

Looking Ahead

The Eagles used free agency to improve their biggest weakness. They signed wideouts Torrey Smith and Alshon Jeffery. Both have played well in the past but at times have been held back by injuries and poor supporting casts. Carson Wentz now has the weapons around him to take his play to the next level. These two talents, along with Matthews, Ertz, and Sproles gives him the tools to run virtually any passing play.

Carson Wentz has a great opportunity in front of him to improve on what was a decent rookie campaign. With a better supporting cast, it’s up to him and the coaching staff to make sure he continues to learn the NFL game as well as the team’s playbook, to lead the Philadelphia Eagles back to the playoffs and bring more trophies and awards to PA.

Local teams throughout PA and NJ looking for plaques, medals, trophies, and other types of awards, can come to Spike’s Trophies. Also, be sure to check our blog regularly to read more about the latest news in college and professional sports!

Famous Awards: The U.S. Open Championship Trophy

Nothing beats taking home a trophy, medal, or crystal award after winning a competition. The U.S. Open golf tournament is one of the biggest golf competitions there is. The winner receives the U.S. Open Championship Trophy. It may not be the most creative name for a trophy, but that doesn’t make it any less coveted.

The trophy has a handle on opposite sides of a silver cup, sitting atop a base made of sterling silver. Engraved on one side of the trophy is the following “United States Golf Association Open Championship.” Underneath, there is an engraved laurel wreath surrounding four golfers.
The trophy’s lid is topped with a winged, female figure that represents victory. Around the base are the names of the previous winners.

It is 18 inches tall and 6 inches in diameter and weighs approximately 8.5 pounds.

History Lesson

The trophy was first presented by the United States Golf Association in 1947. The current version is a replica of the original trophy, created by the Gorham company, that is dated back to the first tournament in 1895.

The winner of the 1946 U.S. Open, Lloyd Mangrum, took the original to Tam O’Shanter, the clubhouse of his home course, near Chicago. Unfortunately, that clubhouse caught fire and the trophy was lost.

Before that, 1898 U.S. Open winner Fred Herd was known to be a heavy drinker. The USGA was so nervous about allowing him to bring the trophy home that they made him put down a cash deposit on it! They were afraid he would pawn it for drinking money. Luckily, he did not make that choice.

What About Today?

Winners of the tournament still get to hold on to U.S. Open Championship Trophy for a year. The winner is also awarded the Jack Nicklaus Medal –  a gold medal they can keep forever.

U.S. Open winners can order a trophy replica from the silversmith company used by the USGA if they’d like to have one to keep. The golf course hosting the tournament can do the same. Only one replica is allowed per winner and golf course.

Having something to show for all your hard work at the end of a long journey is quite rewarding. To find the perfect customizable trophy, medal, or acrylic award, you can always count on Spike’s Trophies!

Famous Philadelphia Athletes: Nolan Patrick

He isn’t necessarily a famous Philly athlete yet, but many are expecting him to become one.

Flyer fans are chomping at the bit to see Nolan Patrick develop and bring many plaques and trophies, specifically the Stanley Cup, to Philadelphia over the next several years. Hockey gurus expected him to be selected first overall by the New Jersey Devils this past summer, but when they passed on him, perhaps because of his injury history, he fell to the Flyers at the second overall pick in the NHL Draft.

It’s In His Blood

You might say ice runs through his family’s veins. His two sisters play hockey. His father Steve Patrick played 250 games in the NHL while his uncle James Patrick has experience playing and serving as an assistant coach in the NHL. On his mother’s side, his uncle Rich Chernomaz is also a former NHL player.

Good From The Get-Go

Even at the age of 14, he was a highly coveted prospect. Patrick was drafted 4th overall by the Brandon Wheat Kings in the 2013 Western Hockey League (WHL) Bantam Draft. Due to injury, the 2014-15 season became his rookie year with the club. It was a successful one as he took home the Jim Piggott Memorial Trophy as the WHL’s rookie of the year, even though he missed 17 games due to injury.

Thrives Under Pressure

The next season, Patrick finished fifth in the league in scoring, becoming the first 17-year old Wheat King player to finish with over 100 points in almost 40 years. That year the Wheat Kings became WHL champions, winning the Ed Chynoweth Cup. In the postseason, Patrick led all players in points and was thus selected as the WHL Playoffs Most Valuable Player.

Injury-plagued?

The next season, 2016-2017, Nolan Patrick was named the captain of the Wheat Kings. But just six games into the season, he once again suffered an upper-body injury. It was later revealed to be a complication of his sports hernia injury from the year before.

He was not medically cleared to participate in Team Canada’s 2017 World Junior training camp and therefore didn’t play in the 2017 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships.

What’s Next?

Regarding Partick, NHL director of Central Scouting Dan Marr was quoted as saying that he is the complete NHL package and has everything any team might be looking for.

Inevitably, if he can stay healthy, Nolan Patrick’s ceiling is very high. He will look to add to his collection of trophies as soon as this upcoming season with the Philadelphia Flyers.