Durant didn’t have to say much to Silver about getting cannabis off banned substance list

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Phoenix Suns Introduce Kevin Durant

Phoenix Suns Introduce Kevin Durant

It doesn’t exactly take a doctoral degree in political science to see which way the smoke is blowing on Americans’ attitudes toward marijuana. A 2022 study by the Pew Research Center found 59% of Americans believe recreational marijuana use should be legal. Ask Americans under 30 and that number jumps to 72%.

The NBA officially took marijuana off the banned substance list as part of the new CBA, although it had stopped testing players for weed in the bubble and never resumed. Kevin Durant met with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver to advocate getting marijuana off the banned substance list and told CNBC he didn’t have to say much because Silver could smell it on him.

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“I actually called him and advocated for him to take marijuana off the banned substance list. I just felt like it was becoming a thing around the country, around the world, that the stigma behind it wasn’t as negative as it was before.”

That led to a meeting between Durant and Silver.

“Well, he smelled it when I walked in. So I didn’t really have to say much, you know what I’m saying? He kind of understood where this was going…

“It’s the NBA, man… everybody does it, to be honest. It’s like wine at this point.”

Durant said Silver largely agreed with him during their discussion. Considering the age of NBA players and the core NBA demographic, Silver is smart enough to smell what was going on. It should be noted that Durant, through Thirty Five Ventures, has invested in several cannabis-related businesses. “I just like the plant,” is how Durant put it to CNBC.

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The league and its players still walk a line because while marijuana is legal (or at the least decriminalized) in most states with NBA teams, there are states where anything with THC is still an illegal substance (Texas, Georgia, Indiana). While there has been a push from some advocates for a national legalization of marijuana, that is among the countless other items that will not move forward anytime soon in a partisan and deadlocked Congress.

At least Silver and Durant are on the same page.

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