George Balabushka died in 1975, a tragic loss not just to his family and friends but to the billiards community as a whole. But his legend lives on in the many improvements he made to cue manufacturing as well as many other places. The famous scene in the 1986 sequel to The Hustler, The Color of Money where Tom Cruise is given a beautiful cue by Paul Newman and told, “It’s a Balabushka,” made the name Balabushka synonymous with top quality pool cues. And David Forman, founder of Adam Custom Cues, licensed the name Balabushka from George’s family. The trademarked name is now owned by Peggy Mallen who manufactures a line of cues under the Balabushka name as a memorial to one of the greatest figures in modern billiards.