With marijuana legalization occurring in many states, many are starting to wonder if this will translate to professional sports. According to Leafly, only 22 out of the 124 teams in the four major pro sports (football, basketball, baseball, and hockey) are based in states that do not allow either medical or adult use cannabis. As of 2022, 18 states allow recreational cannabis in the US and medical marijuana is legal in 38 states.
Many expect with federal legalization looming, cannabis will be come more socially acceptable in the sports arena. In 2019, Major League Baseball removed marijuana from their list of banned substances for the offseason. During the season, they do not test for cannabis. Major League Soccer does in fact test for marijuana as well as the National Women’s Soccer League. There are also other sports where marijuana is completely acceptable such as the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Their statement on the matter is, “Why the hell do we care what someone did a week before, let alone a night before, when it doesn’t have any effect on their ability to fight?” UFC Senior Vice President of Athlete Health and Performance Jeff Novitzky told ESPN.
Included below is a graphic on pro-organizations that do and do not test.
Read the unedited article from Leafly here.