While marijuana.net does not typically engage in sports coverage, there have been interesting developments that have caused us to expand our horizons. Over the weekend we covered how medical marijuana can help patients enjoy delicious foods and be more active. Additionally, we would like to take this opportunity to describe very interesting recent changes in the NBA’s marijuana policy.
Two of America’s major sports organizations seemed destined to miss this season entirely due to labor disagreements. The NFL union and owners did agree to a CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement) in time for a full season. There was intense pressure for these leagues to come to an agreement as America was not pleased with watching the battle between millionaire players and billionaire owners play out in the media. The NBA was not as quick to come to an agreement and fans were forced to miss many games from their favorite basketball teams. Once they did, the discussion quickly turned to guaranteed salaries and player movement. However, one key piece of information was not very publicized pertaining to the NBA agreement. The NBA has now become the first major professional sports organization in America to take a sensible approach toward reforming their marijuana policy.
The NBA will no longer be testing its players for marijuana use in the off-season. Marijuana use has far less side effects than steroids/HGH. Oddly enough, marijuana has been tested for in professional sports for far longer than steroids and human growth hormone. Sports associations have taken a harsh stance on marijuana over the past several decades with severe fines and suspensions rendered toward players who are caught with marijuana. One of basketballs most famous elder statesman, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, is famous for using marijuana to help him cope with nausea and migraines. He is still one of the most prominent faces of the NBA and easily one of the best players of all time. It was announced in November of 2009 that Kareem Abdul Jabbar had cancer (chronic myeloid leukemia), but fortunately this news was followed up by his admission in February of 2011 that his cancer was in remission. While we do not know for sure, it makes us wonder if the NBA great helped lead to a change in sentiment on marijuana for team owners and the usually iron fisted Commissioner David Stern.
We live in an age with instant updates and check ins on facebook , although many still do value their privacy. The NBA players feel that what they do on their own time should be a decision best left up to them. This is a major public industry that has dramatically altered their marijuana policy. Hopefully this victory for the players will gather momentum and reward patients and advocates as well.