Raffle for Jason Terry ring is up and running

DALLAS -- Want to own a $36,000 championship ring that's nearly identical to the one Jason Terry wears on his middle finger? Buy your raffle tickets now.

Terry has partnered with Celebrities for Charity and NetRaffle.org to raffle off an official replica ring. Proceeds will go to the Jason Terry Foundation to help fund events such as turkey drives during the holidays, coat drives during the winter, the summertime Daddy-Daughter ball and a planned trip to China this summer for the AAU team that Terry's oldest daughter plays on and that the Jet coaches.

"It's a unique opportunity,'' Terry said Monday at a news conference to kick off the opening of the raffle. "It doesn't happen often. These fans, they were proud of us. And everywhere we go, what do they ask you? They want to see that ring. And one fans is going to definitely be able to say, 'Hey, not only can you see it, but I got it, and it's right here.'''

Terry hopes the raffle brings in between $600,000 and $800,000. He's hoping for closer to the latter because he wants to beat out the amount the former Ron Artest, now known as Metta World Peace, raised for charity when he raffled off his championship ring with the Los Angeles Lakers. Artest' ring brought in $650,000 under the same raffle process.

David Thomson, the founder of Celebrities of Charities, who was at the American Airlines Center for the news conference, said the San Francisco Giants 2010 World Series ring brought in $850,000 for charity and the New Orleans' Saints Super Bowl ring raised $1.4 million for Gulf Coast relief.

Raffle tickets cost $10 for five tickets. A discount comes with the more tickets purchased.

The ring looks nearly identical to the real deal, including Terry's name inscribed on one side and the playoff slogan, "The Time is Now" on the other side. It boasts 9-carat total weight and contains 250 diamonds. It's value, $36,000, is also roughly the same as the players' rings. Thomson said there are a few subtle differences in the replica ring to keep the player's ring unique.

The winner also will get two tickets to the Mavericks-Clippers game on April 2, plus a travel allowance if they are from outside the DFW area.

Don't be misled about how the winner will be chosen. This is not an auction in which the highest bidder comes out on top. This is a raffle. A winner will simply be selected from the number of tickets bought online.

More good news is that the hefty taxes that will be due on the ring will be covered by the Jason Terry Foundation and Charities for Celebrities. The winner will not be responsible.

So let the raffle begin.

"I'm very competitive. I want to beat Ron Artest," Terry said. "We're hoping to raise $600,000 to $800,000. Hopefully, with the support of Mavs nation, we can get it done.''