NBA Signs Landmark Agreement Allowing Players to Embrace Cannabis: Marijuana Removed from Banned Substances List

NBA Cannabis Revolution: Collective Bargaining Agreement Removes Marijuana from Banned Substances List

In a groundbreaking move, the National Basketball Association (NBA) and its players union have officially signed a collective bargaining agreement that marks the beginning of a cannabis within the league. This historic agreement removes marijuana from the NBA’s list of prohibited substances, ushering in new opportunities for players to embrace cannabis. The seven-year contract, reached two months ago between the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA), has now been signed and will come into effect this weekend. Spanning 676 pages, the document encompasses several cannabis provisions, with the removal of marijuana from the banned substances list being among the most influential changes.

Under the new agreement, players will be permitted to have a stake in and promote cannabis brands, subject to certain exceptions. Notably, they will be allowed to hold ownership interests in entities that produce or sell CBD products. These products are defined as cannabis containing up to 0.3 percent THC by dry weight, aligning with the federal definition of legal . Additionally, players can invest in marijuana companies, as long as their ownership remains passive and constitutes less than 50 percent of the business.

The collective bargaining agreement also outlines guidelines for players’ participation in endorsing or promoting CBD products. Players are granted the freedom to endorse brands, products, or of entities producing or selling CBD products, excluding marijuana companies. However, players may seek permission from both the NBA and the Players Association to endorse CBD products produced or sold by a marijuana company. To secure approval, written requests must include a comprehensive list of the company’s products and ingredients, a detailed description of the proposed promotion or endorsement activity, and a summary of the non-financial terms of the agreement. Without written approval, players are restricted from endorsing CBD products associated with marijuana companies.

Furthermore, the signed agreement establishes penalties for players convicted of driving under the of alcohol or controlled substances, as well as those involved in felonies related to marijuana distribution. It establishes a balanced approach to cannabis use, treating it on par with alcohol. If an NBA team has reasonable cause to believe that a player was under the influence of marijuana and/or alcohol during team or NBA activities or that a player has a dependency or related issue with these substances, the team may refer the player to the Medical Director for a mandatory evaluation. The agreement also allows players to seek assistance from the Medical Director at any time regarding dependency or any other issues related to marijuana or alcohol use.

Non- with mandatory alcohol or marijuana treatment programs will result in disciplinary action, including a $5,000 fine per day of non-compliance. Penalties escalate for players who display a pattern of disregard for their treatment responsibilities or test positive for marijuana and/or alcohol unexpectedly. Additionally, the agreement offers a voluntary treatment option for players seeking help for the use of synthetic cannabinoids such as THC. Voluntary entry into the program does not result in penalties, but failure to comply after entry may lead to and potential suspensions.

By formally eliminating marijuana from the NBA’s banned substances list, this agreement codifies the league’s temporary suspension of cannabis testing over the past three seasons. The decision aligns with the growing trend of professional sports leagues implementing marijuana policy reforms in response to increasing cannabis legalization across states. Leagues such as the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) and the National Football League (NFL) have also taken steps to revise their policies on marijuana use.

In April, NBA commentator and marijuana icon Snoop Dogg praised the league for enabling players to utilize cannabis for medical purposes and potentially as an alternative to opioids. Michele Roberts, a former head of the NBPA and current board member of Cresco Labs, a major cannabis company, had previously predicted that formal changes to the policy would occur soon. The NBA’s with online marijuana marketplace Weedmaps and NBA star Kevin Durant’s collaboration aimed at destigmatizing cannabis further demonstrates the league’s evolving stance on the plant’s potential value for athlete and recovery.

Moreover, the NBA joins other sports entities in recognizing the therapeutic potential of CBD. The NFL and its players union recently announced additional funding for independent on CBD as a pain treatment alternative for players with concussions. In Major League Baseball (MLB), the Kansas City Royals and the Chicago Cubs have formed partnerships with cannabis brands to promote education about the therapeutic benefits of CBD. MLB itself entered a league-wide partnership with a popular CBD brand in the previous year.

The NBA’s historic agreement sets a new standard for professional sports leagues by embracing the changing landscape of cannabis legalization. With the removal of marijuana from the banned substances list and the allowance for player investment and promotion of cannabis brands, the league is paving the way for athletes to navigate the cannabis industry. The NBA’s cannabis revolution signifies a progressive approach toward player well-being and reflects the growing acceptance of cannabis across society.

Malvin Felix
I'm Malvin, a cannabis news enthusiast who finds joy in staying updated about the latest industry trends. My passion led me to become a dedicated writer, entrepreneur, and investor in the cannabis space. Through my writing, I aim to educate and spark discussions, while my entrepreneurial ventures and strategic investments reflect my commitment to driving positive change in the industry.

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