In July, the National Basketball Association entered their “bubble” system that allowed teams to compete without risking a major spread of COVID-19. That was complicated enough without adding extra person-to-person contact outside of the main players, so the league announced they’d be suspending tests for recreational drug use.
If you’re holing up away from friends and family just to play in an empty arena, a few puffs is the least you should get. We’re also living in a time when more and more states are legalizing pot for both medicinal and recreational uses. Much of the stigma of smoking weed has faded, but commissioner Adam Silver still has issues with it, according to Benzinga.
“When we change our policy we have to be really careful because we’re clearly sending a message to young people,” Silver said at the time. “Just like with alcohol, you have to teach young people how to use a substance appropriately and responsibly so it doesn’t overwhelm your life.”
I guess nothing too terrible happened, because the NBA is continuing its suspension of marijuana testing, per reporter Ben Dowsett.
Dowsett later added that some people will be tested still—if there is strong suspicion that they’re using the drug.
In response to the news, NBA player J.R. Smith immediately began to trend on Twitter. (He lobbied to legalized weed in New York, and was suspended for five games back in 2013 after reportedly testing positive for marijuana.)
Anyway, seems like the NBA wants to have the freedom to punish players for smoking weed in case they want to call someone out, basically. That’s too bad. It seems unlikely that a professional athlete who has worked all their life to be in the NBA is going to get the munchies and fall asleep right before the big game. Let them have their days off to spend how they like!