Kevin Durant isn’t only signing papers in the NBA. Durant and his business manager Rich Kleiman inked a multi-year deal with Weedmaps to promote the benefits of marijuana for athletes. The topic of marijuana in sports has been in the spotlight since track star Sha’Carri Richardson tested positive marijuana use and was suspended.
Weedmaps is an e-commerce platform that guides users to dispensaries for marijuana.
According to Durant, the discussion about their next move in the cannabis space had been going on with Rich Kleiman, his partner at Thirty Five Ventures, for months, via Forbes. Marijuana remains banned by the NBA and the 11-time All-Star declined to directly discuss personal marijuana usage. Durant assured that the social shame around cannabis is gradually disappearing.
“I think it’s far past time to address the stigmas around cannabis that still exist in the sports world as well as globally,” Durant told ESPN’s Brain Windhorst. “This partnership is going to help us continue to normalize those conversations, as well as create content, events, and a lot more through our Boardroom media network. This is just the beginning for us.”
The last player to be suspended for using marijuana was Thabo Sefolosha in 2018. Durant intends to address past suspensions when on podcasts in the coming months. Additionally, Durant hopes that some will connect with him in discussing marijuana’s benefits. As it remains, the NBA hasn’t tested their players for marijuana use since the 2020 restart.