NBA Reportedly Won’t Test Players For Recreational Drugs When Season Resumes
The NBA and its Basketball Players Association have agreed to conduct testing for performance-enhancing drugs during its restarted season but will continue its suspension for recreational drugs, according to reports.
Sports reporter Shams Charania tweeted the news earlier this week.
The NBA and National Basketball Players Association agreed to suspend all drug testing during the COVID-19 suspension on March 16. Players usually undergo six drug tests per year, according to the league’s collective bargaining agreement.
A positive test for performance-enhancing drugs results in a 25-game suspension for a first offense, which could keep a player out of most, if not all, of the resumed season and playoffs. A second violation leads to a 55-game suspension while a third positive test results in a minimum of a two-year ban.
As reported, several top NBA talent were ready to resume its season during a private conference call. President of the players association, Chris Paul reportedly organized his fellow NBA stars including the likes of LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Kevin Durant, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kawhi Leonard, Stephen Curry, Damian Lillard, and Russell Westbrook last month. Now, the 2019-20 season is now set to return in July with 22 teams playing at least eight games in Orlando.
Twenty-two of the 30 original NBA teams will play in the new tournament.
1. Milwaukee Bucks
2. Toronto Raptors
3. Boston Celtics
4. Miami Heat
5. Indiana Pacers
6. Philadelphia 76ers
7. Brooklyn Nets
8. Orlando Magic
9. Washington Wizards
1. Los Angeles Lakers
2. Los Angeles Clippers
3. Denver Nuggets
4. Utah Jazz
5. Oklahoma City Thunder
6. Houston Rockets
7. Dallas Mavericks
8. Memphis Grizzlies
9. Portland Trail Blazers
10. New Orleans Pelicans
11. Sacramento Kings
However, Portland Trail Blazers’ star Damian Lillard recently opened up on his plans for the remainder of the NBA season. He said he will not participate if the Blazers are not in the running of making a playoff run. He begins,
“If we come back and they’re just like, ‘We’re adding a few games to finish the regular season,’ and they’re throwing us out there for meaningless games and we don’t have a true opportunity to get into the playoffs, I’m going to be with my team because I’m a part of the team. But I’m not going to be participating. I’m telling you that right now. And you can put that in there.”
Lillard then clarifies his statement by saying he is willing to play in a tournament-style for the last playoff position.
“If we come back and I don’t have an opportunity to make the playoffs, I will show up to work, I’ll be at practice and I’ll be with my team. I’m going to do all that and then I’m going to be sitting right on that bench during the games. If they come back and say it’s something like a tournament, play-in style, between the No. 7 and No. 12 seeds, if we’re playing for playoff spots, then I think that’s perfect.”
Lillard and his Portland Trail Blazers currently stand at 29-37 which is No. 9 spot in the Western Conference. Currently, the Blazers are 3.5 games behind the Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth and final playoff seed to face the top-seeded Los Angeles Lakers.
What are your thoughts on the NBA not testing for recreational drugs? Let us know in the comments!