I’m not sure how many TWB readers are NBA fans, but me and Ninjasmoker are big hoop fans, and we just got done watching the NBA Finals (game 5). At half time we started talking about how basketball and marijuana go hand-in-hand for some reason, because it seems like so many NBA players consume marijuana. I remember listening to a classic rock station a few years back, and it was airing an interview with Tommy Chong.
When asked who his favorite celebrities are, he said that he really likes basketball players; especially Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. He said he smoked with him often, and that Kareem estimated 80% of the NBA smoked pot (including non-player staff). I, of course, am not Tommy Chong or Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (I wish), so I don’t know how valid the interview statement was, but it doesn’t surprise me.
As a life long Portland Trailblazer fan (TWB is in Oregon), I have seen some of the biggest stoners in NBA history up close. Whenever a conversation turns to the topic of ‘marijuana in the NBA,’ it is inevitable that Damon Stoudamire’s name comes up. One famous incident involved Damon trying to smuggle marijuana through an airport security checkpoint. Believe it or not, the security agents found his marijuana wrapped in aluminum foil using standard METAL DETECTION equipment…who would have thought the narcs would be able to crack such a fail proof method??
On another occasion, cops came to search Damon’s house as part of a home security system breach, and found a pound of marijuana in a ‘crawl space.’ Charges were dropped in both cases; the foil case ended up being dropped after drug tests and probation (must be nice), and the house case was dropped due to an illegal search. Damon was also caught riding home with Rasheed Wallace, another Trailblazer, and cited for marijuana possession. The two players were on their way to Portland after a game in Seattle…BC Buds anyone?
It wasn’t the first time two NBA players were cited for marijuana at the same incident. A couple years earlier, then Portland Trailblazer Isaiah Rider was cited along with current Laker Lamar Odom for marijuana possession at a private residence in Oakland, California. This came after an incident in Portland where Isaiah Rider was cited for marijuana possession and paraphernalia after his car was searched during a traffic stop, and officers found a nug and a ‘modified pop can.’ You gotta love Isaiah Rider — making millions of dollars a year, yet smoking in the same fashion as me at the time…I was in middle school, making chump change selling dime bags and firecrackers to rookies…
Former Portland Trailblazer forwards Qyntel Woods and Zach Randolph were also cited for marijuana possession while playing ball in Portland. Qyntel Woods is famous around Oregon for getting pulled over, and rather than give the officer his license, he presented a basketball card of himself saying, ‘This is me…you know me…’ Zach Randolph is currently defending allegations that he was the financier for a multi-state marijuana selling ring.
While my Portland Trailblazers are an exceptional bunch of marijuana offenders, they are by no means the only ones in the NBA that liked to toke down. A simple Google search of marijuana brings up all kinds of stories. My favorite quote was from Richard Dumas, a former guard for the Phoenix Suns that was banned from the NBA. ”If they tested for pot, there would be no league.” One of the coolest things I saw this year was when I took my wife to see the Trailblazers play the Denver Nuggets, and there were dozens of signs that read, ‘BLAZE THOSE NUGGETS.’ Man, do I love Oregon…