Olympic Judoka Banned for Testing Positive for Weed

One of my favorite judoka was banned from the Olympics after an inspiring performance three days ago. He was banned after testing positive for marijuana, which he ate accidentally before his trip to London.

I put this ban right up there with public “outrage” over Michael Phelps being caught smoking wee after his historic performance Olympic performance four years ago.

I don’t know much about the effects of weed on an athlete’s body, but in my naive undestanding of it, it should not be banned from the Olympics as a performance-enhancing drug, especially given that its effects do not last longer than a few hours, and yet it remains in the “system” from many days.

It’s unfortunate that Nick has to be put through this, but in my eyes, it’s a stain on the Olympic committee more than Nick, and will hopefully result in a public outcry and an eventual reversal of this absurd (in my eyes) rule.

0 thoughts on “Olympic Judoka Banned for Testing Positive for Weed

  1. Saro

    Tangriev of Uzbekistan was banned from participating in these Olympics all together and many others as well. Wrong or right – rule is a rule and he knew it as anyone else did. It is careless and embarrassing. Too bad, after such wonderful debut…

    Reply
    1. Lex Post author

      Rules are rules, you’re right of course, but for the future, it’s worth talking about the rules we think should change. It’s really unfortunate that this had to happen to Nick though. He looked great out there.

      Reply
  2. Matt Rothstein

    I’d love to hear your thoughts on his statement that consumption was accidental, and whether you think that this should factor into his disqualification. I almost universally dismiss claims of ignorance like this, but given Nick’s pretty obvious dedication to the sport and his success, I’m tempted to believe him. He’s also someone I always root for, so I’m certainly biased.

    How do you feel about the story? Should he have made the Olympic committee aware earlier if he knew?

    Reply
    1. Lex Post author

      I definitely believe him. I think many of the U.S. Olympians in judo were barraged with support and love from family and friends. There were a million food things being shoved in his face I’m sure. They kept throwing parties to celebrate their trip. Do you believe him?

      And I definitely think he should not have told them first. With things like that, I believe in apologizing after vs asking for permission before. I think in the years to come, people will remember Nick for a great performance, and the marijuana rule will be slowly fading into history.

      In either case, I’m biased just like you. I think he is an exemplary judoka.

      Reply
  3. K9

    I really think that in the past few years, doping in sports has caused the rulings to go overboard. It used to be “anything hormonal is banned”. And now its “literally almost everything is banned.” Who cares if someone had a few beers or a drag before the game to calm themselves down. It gives them no advantage whatsoever.

    They need to go back to only banning things that matter.

    Reply
  4. KB

    I’ve been to a few of Nick’s seminars, and he is a great person and a passionate athlete. It’s a true shame that his dream is being hindered by this event.

    Reply
  5. Alan

    Perhaps I’m the one who’s naive here, but I don’t believe it’s on the banned substances list because it’s a performance enhancer. I would be more inclined to believe that marijuana is on the list because, in most IOC jurisdictions, it’s an illegal drug. I imagine he would also have been expelled if he had heroine or cocaine in his system. Yes, I know those aren’t in the same ballpark, as far as effects go, but sometimes we need extremes to see the point being made.

    Reply
    1. Lex Post author

      Thanks for the comment, it made me research the details a little bit. Apparently legality is not considered in determining the list of banned substances. The reason heroin is banned (along with most painkillers), is because it numbs serious injuries. Cocaine actually has a history of being used by some fighters and is a very effective stimulant. And it’s banned in the Olympics along with the million other stimulants. Bakhaavaa Buidaa of Mongolia was stripped of his silver medal in judo at the 1972 Games in Munich due to elevated levels of caffeine…

      Reply

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