Athletes in Cannabis Entering New Playing Fields

marijuana in sports


Failing a drug test for cannabis can easily get an athlete ousted from any league, organizations like the World Anti-Doping Agency, or WADA, still bans cannabis use, and all major US pro-sports leagues still include marijuana on their list of prohibited substances. While this hard stance on cannabis is out of touch with the majority of Americans – nearly 75% of Americans believe cannabis is less harmful to consume than alcohol – sports leagues are still accepting millions in alcohol sponsorships while demonizing cannabis. 

Despite professional sports leagues refusal to get with the times, athletes are endorsing cannabis like never before. Pro athletes are not only taking ownership of their cannabis consumption, but they are active members in the booming cannabis industry. Today, many world famous athletes are keeping their heads in the cannabis game by starting their own cannabis companies. Recently, Red Sox legend, David Ortiz, or “Big Papi” partnered with Revolutionary Farms to found Papi Cannabis, a line which includes packaged pre-rolls with crafty names like “Sweet Sluggers”. 

After being inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, it seems Mr. Ortiz is still riding high – in more ways than one.

Athletes are embracing cannabis like never before

David Ortiz isn’t the only famous athlete stepping onto the cannabis playing field. Many athletes now endorse cannabis and if you’re up to date on recent research in cannabis science, it’s easy to understand why. Tons of anecdotal reports from professional athletes show that cannabis is a great way to recover after intense physical activity. There’s research that shows CBD products help with muscle recovery, and full-spectrum cannabis products like whole flower can potentially aid in pain relief, as well as ease stress and anxiety

Though science and professional sports organizations may be at odds when it comes to cannabis, these athletes are taking a hard stance as pro-cannabis advocates and entrepreneurs.

1. Mike Tyson

mike tyson cannabis 2.0
Image source: Westword

Mike Tyson hit the cannabis industry with Tyson 2.0, his own branded cannabis line that includes premium quality flower, pre-rolled joints, and tasty little edible morsels in the shape of bitten ears – a wry crack at his own infamous involvement in the “Bite Fight” against Evander Hollyfield in 1997. Tyson believes that cannabis helps him be a better person, and uses it holistically as part of his daily wellness routine. Tyson founded his company to share the emotional and physical relief that cannabis bestows upon him with others and has since seen huge success.

2. Calvin Johnson

calvin johnson cannabis athlete
Image source: Forbes

Former NFL player and Hall of Famer founded his own cannabis company called Primitiv. Johnson, an advocate for cannabis, says that he often used the plant to cope with pain and recovery after games and found that it helped his body in a holistic way. He was inspired to start his own company to help reduce the stigma surrounding the plant, and start a conversation surrounding professional athletes and cannabis.

3. Al Harrington

al harrington cannabis athlete
Image source: Sports Illustrated

Former NBA star co-founded Viola, a California-based cannabis company named after his grandmother. Viola grows, processes, and sells all types of cannabis products, including everything from flower to concentrates. Harrington now has operations in 5 states and is growing. In fact, his company generated about $20 million in revenue last year. Selling weed isn’t this athlete’s only goal. Harrington’s main goal is to help Black and Brown entrepreneurs earn their fair stake in the cannabis industry.

4. Nate Diaz

nate diaz cannabis athlete
Image source: LowKickMMA

UFC star Nate Diaz is a longtime supporter of cannabis in professional sports. Known for marijuana-centered stunts, like his Instagram live video smoking weed while getting tested by a USADA representative. Nate and his brother Nick Diaz, also of the UFC, started their own CBD company called Game Up, offering top-shelf products using organic, sustainable, vegan-friendly ingredients.

5. Marshawn Lynch

marshawn lynch cannabis
Image source: Black Enterprise

The former Raiders running back started his own “diamond-infused” cannabis line called Dodi Blunts. Diamonds are a form of pure THC extracted from the cannabis plant, which is included into the blunt with traditional cannabis flower and rolled in a palm wrap. Lynch hopes to help the Black and Brown communities by contributing to organizations that help release nonviolent cannabis prisoners as well as raise funds for re-entry programs that help recently released prisoners get reacclimated.

6. Megan Rapinoe

megan rapinoe cbd athlete
Image source: Forbes

Soccer star and Olympian, Rapinoe started her own CBD line called Mendi. The athlete has repeatedly spoken about the positive benefits of CBD on her body and mind, especially after intense games or training sessions. Mendi provides a variety of products including drink tablets, edibles, topicals, and tinctures.

Supporting Athlete Advocates

At Bud’s Goods, we support cannabis advocates, including the many professional athletes that are making a name for themselves in this highly regulated, competitive industry. As a Massachusetts born and bred cannabis company, we’re excited to include David Ortiz’s Papi Cannabis as part of our offerings at our three dispensary locations in Abbington, Worcester, and Watertown. Visit us today and chat with our friendly budtenders to find the perfect product for your needs – whether that’s a Sweet Slugger or an 1/8th of quality, good buds!

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