Faced with allegations of widespread cheating among athletes in his country, Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko has consistently fired back at critics. Now he is taking aim at the NBA and NHL. Speaking to reporters this weekend, Mutko criticized the two pro leagues for what he characterized as lax anti-doping enforcement. “Nobody does doping tests at those leagues,” Mutko was quoted as saying by the Russian news agency Tass. “They do doping tests once every four years, when coming to the Olympics.”
Pau Gasol on L’Equipe article hinting at doping: “It’s not nice to have your professionalism and your integrity questioned without merit. It’s not acceptable. At the same time, I try look at the positive side of things. While it was something negative, I still managed to look at it as something positive, like they were complimenting me as a player.”
LeBron James expressed indifference Saturday over the NBA’s planned blood tests for Human Growth Hormone beginning next season, a policy agreed to by the league and players’ union that was announced Thursday. “if it’s the rules, it’s the rules,” James said after Cleveland’s final practice before hosting Boston on Sunday in Game 1 of an Eastern Conference first-round playoff series. “It shouldn’t be a problem.”
NBA players will be blood-tested for human growth hormone beginning next season. The league and the players association announced Thursday that HGH testing will start during training camp next fall. All players will be subjected to three random, unannounced tests annually – two during the season and once in the offseason.
Marijuana is legal in Colorado. A player from the Denver Nuggets can legally smoke weed but would be penalized by the NBA for doing so. What will you do if these drug laws continue to erode, state by state? Adam Silver: It doesn’t force us to change our policy. Plenty of employers have rules against employees drinking, which is perfectly legal. This is a policy matter, and it’s our strong preference that our players do not consume marijuana. We believe it will affect their performance on the court. That said, marijuana testing is something that’s collectively bargained with the players’ association, and we adjust to the times. But we’re much more concerned about HGH testing and designer performance-enhancing drugs. Among our many priorities going forward, marijuana is not at the top of our list.
FIBA carried out an extensive anti-doping programme in the lead-up and during its main events in 2014, with the results confirming that all players who participated are clean and reinforcing the fact that basketball is a low-risk doping sport. More than 300 samples were collected over the course of the FIBA Basketball World Cup, the FIBA World Championship for Women and the FIBA U17 World Championships for Men and Women, with a minimum of three players per team tested. The testing was carried out to establish Athlete Biological Passports (ABPs) and to detect Human Growth Hormones (HGH) and Erythropoietin (EPO) among others.
03 Mar 14