Karl-Anthony Towns Believes NBA Should Remove Marijuana From Banned Substances


Last month, former NBA commissioner David Stern stated in an interview with Uninterrupted that he strongly believes marijuana should be removed from the NBA’s banned substance list, a sentiment that Karl-Anthony Towns wholeheartedly agrees with.

“I agree with David Stern with marijuana,” the 22-year-old said. “You don’t have to actually make it “Mary J” [or] “Half Baked.” You don’t have to do it like that, but you could use the [chemical] properties in it to make a lot of people better. That’s something that Adam Silver has to do, that’s out of my control, but maybe legalizing marijuana.

While speaking with ESPN’s Nick Friedell, the Minnesota Timberwolves star said, while he has never smoked marijuana or drank alcohol, the legalization of it could be quite beneficial for athletes.

“These guys, just because we’re NBA athletes, we’re not super humans,” he said. “Some of us have conditions that could use [medical marijuana] to our benefit for everyday living, just taking care of our kids and our families.”

Towns said his perspective on the subject changed after interacting with autistic individuals who used the drug to benefit their everyday lives.

“I think in the right context it would be beneficial. Obviously, everything in moderation. We don’t have a Tylenol bottle and take six of them. You take what’s directed to help you feel better. We have an amazing drug program for our questions, and we have great backing by the association who does so much research, and they do so much great work with that. Whether it’s not legal, whether it’s legal, they always do a great job of making sure that they give the players every chance to be healthy.”

The league’s current marijuana policy punishes players with mandatory completion of a substance abuse program for their first infraction.  The second infraction results in a $25,000 fine. The third infraction comes with a 5-game suspension, and every positive test after that earns an addition five game added onto the length of their suspension (so 10 games for the 4th, 15 games for the 5th, and so on).

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