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Cigar All-Stars

What are some of the greatest athletes and coaches in sports doing when they're not competing? Enjoying a cigar, of course.
CA Staff
From the Print Edition:
Bill Murray, Nov/Dec 2004

Cigars have always had their place among sports fanatics. Not only are they a staple for tailgaters in parking lots everywhere, but many stadiums and arenas also offer cigar-friendly bars and lounges where spectators can enjoy a smoke during intermissions or while waiting for the postgame traffic to clear.

It's not just fans getting in on the cigar action, however, or even the multitudes of dedicated golf enthusiasts who swear there's no better place to light up than on the course. Professional athletes and coaches also have a history of being cigar lovers. We're talking guys like legendary slugger Babe Ruth and Boston Celtics icon Red Auerbach. Seldom were they without a cigar once the game was over, and often times Auerbach would be clipping his signature smoke before the final whistle blew, confident that the Celtics had the game locked up.

Today's coaches and athletes certainly smoke cigars, too. Sometimes it's to celebrate a championship or the breaking of a record, and other times it's to aid relaxation during the off-season or when a gourmet meal or bottle of wine demands it. For this select group we deem Cigar All-Stars, a premium cigar is more than just for celebrating athletic feats, but also for celebrating the best that life has to offer.

Here at Cigar Aficionado, we tracked down those athletes and coaches who excel both as professional sports figures and as cigar lovers. They are the best of the best and true Cigar All-Stars.

Michael Jordan

Without argument, Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time. He led the Bulls to six NBA championships, won the league MVP five times and averaged 30 points per game during his 15-year career. He ranks among the best in almost every offensive category, and he changed the face of the NBA, and sports marketing as a whole.

But what about Michael Jordan the cigar smoker? Sure, His Airness prefers to keep his love of cigars under the radar, but that doesn't mean he isn't a connoisseur. His favorite cigar is the Cohiba Limited Edition Double Corona and he's been known to light up after winning the NBA championship, when he's playing a round of golf or sitting at a card table. And what about the cigar cutter accident or his chain of cigar-friendly steak houses?

Anyway you cut it, Jordan is a Hall of Fame athlete. And at the end of the day, he's also a Hall of Fame cigar smoker.
—Michael Marsh

Shaquille O'Neal

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