Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander learned a hard lesson about leaving his supermodel girlfriend Kate Upton unattended at a professional basketball game. The Detroit Tigers star pitcher had left his seat for only a few minutes, but it was time enough for Orlando Magic mascot Stuff the Magic Dragon to swoop in and pop the question to the Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover girl with a fist-sized faux diamond ring.
The 21-year-old Upton accepted the ring and kissed the furry winged mascot on the snout, but didn’t exactly say “Yes” to the proposal that took place during a break in the action at Friday night’s close contest between the Magic and the Oklahoma City Thunder at Orlando’s Amway Center.
Verlander, 30, displayed mock outrage when he returned to his seat to find his beaming girlfriend cradling a bouquet of flowers and wearing a supersize engagement ring. “I was gone for 5 seconds!!” he tweeted, along with a photo of his animated confrontation with the green-and-pink dragon.
Upton seemed to enjoy the mascot fun as well as the exciting game that was won by the Magic 103-102 on a last-second dunk. On Twitter, she posted a snapshot of herself flashing her enormous ring, along with a tweet, “Thanks @STUFF_mascot for the proposal tonight! Great game!”
The audacious dragon tweeted out to Upton and his fans, “She didn’t say yes… and she didn’t say no… so you’re saying there’s a chance!”
On her return to Los Angeles, a TMZ reporter intercepted Upton at LAX airport and asked how she felt about the mascot proposal. “It’s a huge honor,” she said. “He’s a magic dragon, so how could I say ‘No.’”
The six-time MLB All-Star pitcher and the high-profile model have been dating on and off since 2012. Some observers believe Stuff’s public proposal could be the wake-up call Verlander needs to start his own search for Upton’s perfect engagement ring.