First of all, I want to say that The Last Dance is 100% the sports-related distraction that we all need right now. It’s the Tiger King of sports.
Second, KOBE! His 19-year-old baby face first appeared in episode 5 and I was not prepared. So many feels!
And now we can discuss what I really want to say today: Michael Jordan’s obsession with cigars.
Prepare for a rant.
I’ve mentioned before that I’m new to the world of sportsfan-dom. Obviously, I’ve always known who MJ is. Duh. But there’s a lot I didn’t know about him, including his love of cigars. Come to find out he even graced the cover of Cigar Aficionado magazine (Charles Barkley has too – I think he’s this month’s cover model, actually).
As I’ve watched (correction: VISUALLY DEVOURED) each episode of The Last Dance, I’m appalled every time MJ appears on screen with a cigar. Heck, I’m appalled every time any of the featured athletes light up! I mean, fine, after they win an NBA championship, sure! Have a celebratory stogie! But the rest of the time? What the actual heck, guys. What on earth are you doing.
Everyone has vices. I get that. But… gah! Cigars are made with tobacco. Just look at the CDC’s website regarding cigar usage. They can increase your chances of developing lung, esophagus, larynx, lip, tongue, mouth, and throat cancer. They can cause gum disease. They can cause tooth loss. They can contribute to heart disease. They can increase the risk of emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Not to mention all the coughing they can cause with regular use.
Why would a professional athlete, a person whose job it is to be in peak physical condition, risk their health by smoking cigars or anything else? Nobody can claim that these people don’t know the associated risks, absolutely nobody. And Michael Jordan is probably the world’s most famous athlete, so he’s got to know that when the public sees him lighting up, everyone takes notice. Kids are going to notice.
Yes, I realize that he can’t live his life worrying about what other people think about every teensy thing he does. That would be exhausting, probably impossible. But smoking is a huge deal. Even if he doesn’t worry about what everyone else thinks, shouldn’t he worry about himself? His body? His health? His performance?
Nobody can say that his smoking affected his athletic performance, that’s for sure. But that doesn’t mean the same unhealthy activity won’t affect other athlete’s performances. I did a bit of research and I can’t find anywhere that the NBA takes a stance on their players’ smoking habits, but I’m sure that individual coaches have something to say about it.
Okay, you get the point. I’m done ranting. And I still love Michael! Nothing can ever quell my love for that man. Watching this docuseries has been like going on dates with my high school crush – except Jason K didn’t ever invite me into the locker room with him. But I’ve moved on. MJ will always be my man.
For more thoughts and opinions from Melanie, check out her author page.
Image Source: USA Today