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Ex-NBA Commissioner: Remove Marijuana Ban

Monday, July 16th, 2012. Aspen, CO, USA 4:15 PM A CONVERSATION WITH Phil Kent, Chairman and CEO, Turner Broadcasting System David Stern, Commissioner, National Basketball Association Moderator: Geoff Colvin, Senior Editor at Large, Fortune Photograph by Kevin Maloney/Fortune Brainstorm Tech

Former NBA commissioner David Stern has agreed to the idea that the league should remove marijuana from the list of banned substances.

Stern recently sat down with former NBA player Al Harrington, who has become an entrepreneur on the medical marijuana field, and discussed the role that marijuana has in the medical field.

Stern told Harrington for a documentary on the Uninterrupted, “I’m now at the point where, personally, I think it probably should be removed from the banned list.”

Of course, Stern’s words won’t change what the NBA does in terms of removing the ban on marijuana since he no longer is in charge of the league. But his former right hand man and current NBA commissioner Adam Silver has talked about the issue as recently as August of this year.

Silver told Reddit: “I would say it’s something we will look at/ I’m very interested in the science when it comes to medical marijuana.”

Harrington, a 17-year pro, said that he used marijuana as a pain medication for the last three years of his career. He would use CBD, a derivative of marijuana, instead of traditional pain killer medicines to treat what he described a “botched knee surgery.”

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If the NBA were to change its’ regulations on marijuana usage for rehabilitation, it would be an important achievement for the movement that is currently going at a fast pace across the United States.

Currently 29 states and the District of Colombia allow medical marijuana to be prescribed while 8 states have marijuana legalized for recreational use.

In the United States, major sports leagues have marijuana listed as a banned substance, but that does not always mean that there are repercussions. Associations like the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing, the Professional Golfers’ Association of America,

the National Hockey League, and Major League Baseball don’t always punish players for using marijuana. The NHL only tests athletes to monitor use and in baseball many players have come out in the open as saying that fellow teammates smoke marijuana regularly. In baseball’s minor leagues players do get punished.

NBA executive vice president of communications Mike Bass told reporters when asked to comment on Stern’s words, “While [current NBA] commissioner [Adam] Silver has said that we are interested in better understanding the safety and efficacy of medical marijuana, our position remains unchanged regarding the use by current NBA players of marijuana for recreational purposes.”

Featured Image: Wikimedia
Louis Olvera
Louis grew up in a small town of Mexico called Ensenada in the state of Baja California. He now resides in San Diego, California. He completed his undergraduate degree at Seton Hall University located in South Orange, New Jersey with a focus on Broadcast Journalism. His broadcasting courses ranged in television and film but Louis’ main focus has always been with sportscasting. He was able to join clubs in the university like Pirate TV and Pirate Sports Network and be a major contributor and correspondent. His work consisted of creating digital content for Seton Hall University sports teams. Louis narrated, reported, produced, directed, and wrote for multiple matches and studio programs. In the summer of 2017, Louis wrote post match reports and opinion pieces on the Mexican National Team on the sports website during the FIFA Confederations Cup and the CONCACAF Gold Cup. Louis is now completing an MA in International Sports Journalism at St Mary’s University Twickenham. He is pursuing to improve his all around skills in sports journalism to one day achieve his goal in the broadcasting world.
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