Snoop Backs Reform in Sports Cannabis Policies

Liz Filmer
20 Apr 2023

Musician, weed icon and entrepreneur Snoop Dogg has welcomed the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) decision to remove cannabis from the league’s banned substances list for players. The rapper gave his opinion on the policy change during an appearance on ESPN’s “Stephen A’s World” last week.

Snoop commented that he supported the reform based on the health benefits and how it could help reduce the opioids and all the pills and injections they need.

“I thought about that side and how certain players have been able to have a beautiful life after sports because they’ve been able to treat themselves. So as long as it doesn’t enhance your skills to make you play better or to give you an advantage, you should be able to treat yourself and to heal yourself,”- Snoop.

NBA’s move would align it with other professional sports organisations like Major League Baseball (MLB). The updated policy would also permit players to promote and invest in the growing cannabis industry.

Snoop has long been lending his voice to advocating for athletics organisations to embrace more lenient cannabis policies, highlighting that cannabis could be a less addictive and harmful option to prescription opioids.

“Through the CBD and THC, athletes can find relaxation and the medical treatment that they deserve—without later side effects—so I push for that in sports,” commented Snoop in 2021.

A growing number of professional leagues have made moves to legislate cannabis policy reforms as more states have legalised cannabis. One recent example is Nevada, where sports regulators are reconsidering their rules to formally protect athletes from being penalised over using or possessing cannabis in adherence with state law.

The Chicago Cubs became the first MLB team to officially associate with a CBD company, following the national organisation’s league-wide collaboration with a famous CBD brand in 2022.

MLB stands out among other professional sports leagues as being more flexible regarding cannabis policy change. For example, a memo in 2020 stated that players would not be penalised for using cannabis whilst away from work. However, they can still not be personally sponsored by a cannabis company or hold shares or acquisitions within the industry.

In 2021, UFC announced they would no longer discipline fighters over positive cannabis tests.


Separately, student-athletes who are members of the NCAA would not automatically forfeit their eligibility to play following a positive cannabis test under new rules suggested by a key committee last year. In addition, the National Football League’s (NFL) drug testing policy was already changed demonstrably in 2020 as part of a collective bargaining agreement.

Liz Filmer