Professional sports leagues big and small are looking for ways to offset the revenues lost (and revenues that will be lost in 2021) because of the coronavirus pandemic. But to date, none of the four major U.S. leagues has been willing to align with or permit medical marijuana or CBD brand sponsorships. The decision to remain on the sidelines and forego the potentially lucrative revenue stream—despite 33 states having passed medical marijuana legislation and 47 states having adopted regulations on CBD oil—is reminiscent of the leagues’ approach to sports betting prior to PASPA being struck down in May of 2018. But with Democratic vice president nominee Kamala Harris vowing to decriminalize marijuana at the federal level (and expunge marijuana-related offenses from criminal records) should a Biden-Harris administration reign, it’s fair to wonder if the 2020 election will be the catalyst for the big four leagues to finally open up medical marijuana and CBD as sponsorship categories.
Our Take: Michael Neuman anticipates the big four leagues will begin embracing medical marijuana and CBD partnerships within the next five years—a timeline that should allow both legislative and FDA approval processes to play out. The Scout Sports & Entertainment partner expects that Harris, if elected, will try to honor her word and decriminalize marijuana at the federal level. [Read more at Yahoo! Sports]