“Law & Order” Puts Pool in the Spotlight

Ewa Laurance enjoyed a moment with special guest Jerry Orbach at Laurance's Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

Ewa Laurance enjoyed a moment with special guest Jerry Orbach at Laurance’s Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

After speaking with actor Jerry Orbach, star of NBC’s Law & Order, Billiard Congress of America Executive Director Stephen Ducoff reports that Orbach’s character plays pool on tonight’s episode (Wednesday, April 14, 2004). He speaks about the sport, and even mentions professional players by name.

Mr. Orbach is an accomplished billiard player and recently was a special guest at the Billiard Congress of America (BCA) Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony (held April 1, 2004 at the Las Vegas Hilton) as the industry honored the 2004 inductees Ewa Mataya Laurance and George Balabuska.

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Laurance, Balabushka Picked for Hall of Fame

374aEwa Laurance, 9-ball goddess and the public face of the billiard industry in the 1990s, and legendary cuemaker George Balabushka will be inducted into the Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame on April 1 during the BCA International Billiard & Home Recreation Expo in Las Vegas, Nev.

For the Hall of Fame’s 2004 class, BCA voters chose Laurance over fiery pool superstar Earl Strickland and longtime pro and promoter Allen Hopkins in the Greatest Player category. Balabushka, who died in 1975, won the nod in the Meritorious Service category over American Poolplayers Association founders Terry Bell and Larry Hubbart, and 19th century player-author Maurice Daley.

Laurance is a former world 9-ball champion and current president of the Women’s Professional Billiard Association. Her appearance on the cover of The New York Times Magazine in 1992 triggered a media blitz for pool, and the native Swede then split her time between stumping for the sport and playing championship-level pool.

Balabushka was considered the Stradivarius of cuemakers – an innovator in cue construction, designs and finishes. Already a member of the American Cuemakers Association Hall of Fame, he also was credited with elevating widespread demand for custom cues.