TOP 10 NBA GOLFERS
While some play golf just to pass the time on a weekend or be chummy with work friends, the sport has become more than just a social get together or passing hobby for many. Athletes have followed suit. These NBA players (current and former) are some of the best golfers that aren’t on the PGA tour.
According to Golf Digest, Ray Allen is the best basketball playing golfer today. He has a 1.2 handicap and even holds his own golf tournament. His annual tournament benefits his Ray of Hope Foundation, and has drawn top celebrities from all over. During the 2011 lockout plagued season, Allen went on the record as saying, “I think (golf) keeps me from going crazy.” Allen, who’s known for being a sniper from behind the three point line, posted a 69 in the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic, shortly before he shared those feelings about golf.
Charlotte Bobcats chairman and NBA legend, Michael Jordan, happens to share the same hobby and handicap as Ray-Ray. MJ also hosts his own celebrity golf tournament in Las Vegas, which make me think that he might like to place a bet or two down, on who might take home first place in his tournament. “His Airness” recently showed his custom made Carolina blue golf cart too.
Larry Legend, one of the greatest basketball trash talkers of all time, has such an arsenal of smack talk that it even continued on the golf course. When asked about an article which suggested that Michael Jordan might try to play on the PGA senior tour, Bird scoffed and said, “He’s a better baseball player than golfer, so you can reach your own conclusions.” Ouch. Bird Also boasts a 3.1 handicap, and is the co-founder of the Hideout Club in Naples, Florida.
Jerry West was so good at basketball, that they turned a silhouette of him into the NBA logo. West was one of the core pieces that really shaped the Lakers franchise. With him at the point, the Lakers were constantly in the finals. His golf game isn’t too bad, either. He has a handicap of 3, and even hit a hole in one at a Lakers golf charity event.
Former Trailblazer (and part of the reason why Portland didn’t draft Michael Jordan) and Rocket, Clyde Drexler, is another good NBA golfer. He has a 3.9 handicap and has recently played in the AT&T Pro-Am celebrity tournament.
Here’s a name that Lakers fans know well. Danny Ainge helped Boston win two NBA titles in the ‘80s and one more as a team executive. He has a 5.6 handicap and has posted some of the best scores at the Celtics’ annual golf tournament.
Starks, a streak shooter whose career peaked in the ‘94 NBA Finals, has been known to hit the course. Starks’ foundation hosts an annual celebrity golf tournament, as well. The foundation gives scholarships to college bound high school seniors in the Tulsa area. Starks has a handicap of 6.
Jason Kidd really likes golfing, but it’s not his passion. When asked what he’d do after retirement, he said, “Listen, I know you can golf your way around the world two or three times. But when you get tired of that, and you will, then you’re going to ask me what you should do next.” Although he doesn’t share the same love for golf that he does for basketball, he still has a good swing and a 6.6 handicap.
Doc’s handicap of 7 isn’t the best, but he does love golf. He’s hosted a celebrity golf tournament for over ten years, and even encouraged his Celtics teams to play golf with each other.
Lakers point guard Steve Nash is one of the most athletic guys around. Other than basketball, he’s a good soccer player and a decent golfer. He has a handicap of 15 and has supported many different golf tournaments.