This Weed in Sports: Odom Will be Keeping up With Canna-Business

Two-time NBA champion Lamar Odom is the latest in long list of former professional athletes trying their hand at the cannabis industry after retirement.

The 14-season NBA veteran and former Parade high school player of the year went through a rough number of years, which he attributes to a crack cocaine addiction. Throughout his treatment and recovery, the therapeutic value of marijuana became apparent to Odom, he said.

He told celebrity news website The Blast, “While going through rehab, I discovered certain strains that support wellness.”

This discovery planted seeds that eventually grew into the business plan for his own cannabis company, Rich Soil Organics.

“It’s a perfect time to offer these cannabis solutions to the public who may be going through similar body issues as I am,” Odom said. “Friends, associates, and ex-teammates asked me what solutions I was using on my road back to recovery, and that’s when Rich Soil Organics was born.”

The California-based brand will offer an assortment of products later this year including organic, pesticide-free Flower, Concentrate, and CBD products.

Odom played for 14 years in the NBA, for the Los Angeles Clippers, Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks. He won two championships with the Lakers in 2009 and 2010. Odom and reality TV superstar Khloé Kardashian were married from 2009 to 2016. Their wedding was featured on “Keeping Up with the Kardashians,” and they starred in a spinoff reality series. In 2015, Odom was found unconscious in a Nevada brothel and had to be placed on life support. He spent 2016 in recovery.’s parent company, Weedmaps, recently released “The Exit Drug,” a documentary that sheds light on the role cannabis is playing in curbing the addiction crisis America is facing.

Former NFL quarterback Chris Simms, son of Hall-of-Famer and New York Giants Super Bowl MVP Phil Simms, said during his podcast that the professional football league’s substance abuse program is a nightmare for players. The Bleacher Report NFL analyst detailed how players who have never failed a test look at their yearly drug screening as a “release,” as they are free to consume until next year’s test. But, should you fail a test and enter the league’s substance abuse “program,” the tests are not a positive entry on the calendar.

“One year in Tampa Bay, I was in the drug program and I took a chance. I did. I got home from a preseason game and the guys were hanging out, and I was like ‘Damn, man, that looks fun.’ I took a few hits and I ended up getting in the program again. I lost four game checks. …

Long story short: The drug program [is]miserable. You can be tested all the time. They can come to your house. How many times was I on the way to see a movie with my wife and then they call and I was like, ‘Damn, honey … we gotta go back.’ Because you have a time — once they call you, the time limit starts.”

The drug program should be helpful for players struggling with substance abuse. While the NFL has recently expressed more interest in exploring cannabis research, they still take an archaic stance on the matter when it comes to players using cannabis, therapeutically or otherwise.

Once-promising careers have been derailed by politics and fear of modern medicine within the highest ranks of the NFL. The tide is beginning to turn, with owners such as Jerry Jones speaking out in favor of marijuana reform in the league bylaws.“It’s evolving, and it’s a discussion that can be had now that couldn’t have happened 10 years ago,” Jones said. “Things have changed. Of anybody, I’m certainly an agent for change.”

As the advent of nationwide cannabis legalization inches closer in Canada, growers hoping to gain insight into the qualifications for a micro-cultivator license have been on the edge of their seats property lines waiting for an announcement from Health Canada.

The government health organization tasked with marijuana regulations made its announcement in the most Canadian way possible.

Using the visual aid of an ice hockey rink layout, universally recognized among Canadians, Health Canada let all the hopeful licensees know that only grows measuring 200 square metres or less would qualify as a micro-cultivation designation.
No word yet on whether violators of the grow-size regulations will have to spend time in the penalty box for neutral zone infractions.

As though serving in America’s armed services wasn’t enough reason to give someone a medical cannabis sponsorship, Flavie Dokken went ahead and became an ultramarathoner to seal the deal.

The 36-year-old endurance athlete and former bodybuilder secured an endorsement from Wana Brands Edibles to aid in her recovery and pain relief, but the partnership will also help raise awareness about the therapeutic benefits of the plant.

“I definitely want to help out the cause,” Dokken said. “Because, you know, I do partake in it, and I see the benefits. It’s unfortunate to have to be hush-hush about it all the time.”

Even though the World Anti-Doping Agency has removed CBD from its banned substances list, many other sponsors forbid their partner athletes from associating with cannabis brands.

“In the sports world, I would say it’s still very hypocritical,” she said.

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