It is no secret that NBA players love their wine, and some have even branched out into creating their wine labels away from the court.
In the 2020 NBA bubble in Orlando, it became clear just how popular wine had become in the league, with several players having fridges set up in their rooms for the bottles they had ordered or brought in with them. While some players like to spend their money on cars, homes or other business ventures, others expand their wine collection and bring in bottles from all over the world.
Players such as Carmelo Anthony and JJ Redick have extensive wine cellars and have been at the forefront of the drink's rise in popularity in the NBA. On that note, here's a look at five players who are well-known wine enthusiasts.
#1 Carmelo Anthony
Carmelo Anthony is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, wine enthusiasts in the NBA. He even has his own YouTube show called 'What's in your glass', where he often discusses wine, among other drinks, with his guests.
Back in 2015, on an infamous boat trip alongside LeBron James, Chris Paul and Dwyane Wade, Anthony says, that was when the wine culture in the NBA began. The ten-time All-Star covered the Wine Spectator magazine earlier this year, and has discussed the potential of launching his wine brand.
Anthony has an extensive wine cellar which he custom-built for his Manhatten apartment, and is 500 square feet in size. In a recent interview with the Wine Spectator, he discussed how NBA players have adapted to being on the road during the COVID-19 pandemic:
“I carry my wine, so I make do. I always have a bottle in the bag, especially for an overnight trip. But if I’m on the road for a week, eight or nine days, then I’m packing at least a six-pack. I just grab six bottles out of the cellar, it doesn’t matter. I just want to drink something good.”
#2 CJ McCollum
Possessing cases of his wine label, as well as plenty of other lines, CJ McCollum became the resident sommelier of the bubble last year as select players and staff were given a bottle of McCollum Heritage 91.
When Portland drafted McCollum in 2013, he moved to one of America's great Pinot Noir regions. He had been interested in the drink throughout his time with the franchise, but it wasn't until recently that he was able to partner with Adelsheim, a leading Portland vineyard, to create his label.
The 29-year-old McCollum is, in fact, one of the only NBA players to have their label and recently released a new Rosé, which sold out in hours.