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Charles Barkley speaks out on whether NBA should allow players to smoke marijuana

Charles Barkley, NBA

A few members of the media, including the Washington Post’s Ben Golliver, caught up with TNT’s Charles Barkley in Chicago for All-Star Weekend, and the NBA legend was asked about athletes using marijuana.

Barkley said that while “he’s not a pot guy…if you’re using pot to heal your body and things like that, I guess I can accept it. But I don’t want guys just smoking pot because they like to smoke pot.”

Charles Barkley added that marijuana had “really helped some football friends” of his.

He’s “very sensitive to the subject. I had a brother who died young who was a junkie, so drugs are a real serious issue to me.”

Charles Barkley’s statements align with an appearance on The Dan Patrick Show in March 2017, when he shared some amusing weed-related anecdotes, including getting a “contact high” from Nirvana at Saturday Night Live and his experiences smoking in the pros.

Charles Barkley also told Patrick that he had “smoked pot like three time, five times in my life and all it made me want to do was eat potato chips.” He made extremely similar comments about pot and chips during a February 2018 spot on Jimmy Kimmel Live!

The NBA has a relatively tame marijuana policy in comparison to the other major professional sports leagues in North America. Charles Barkley is aware of that. Commissioner Adam Silver told Yahoo’s Chris Haynes last summer that he has mixed feelings about the use of marijuana among players—pending ongoing research—and expects the issue to come up in the next Collective Bargaining Agreement.

“When we change our policy we have to be really careful because we’re clearly sending a message to young people. Just like with alcohol, you have to teach young people how to use a substance appropriately and responsibly so it doesn’t overwhelm your life. It’s a complicated issue,” Silver said.

Charles Barkley can appreciate that point.