These past few weeks have been very impactful for cannabis and professional sports. NFL legend and known stoner Josh Gordon is back active and starting in games. Shi’carri Richardson’s cannabis kerfuffle has caused the doping agency that governs track & field to go light on future cannabis offenses. The NBA also announced they would not perform random cannabis-focused drug tests this season. Keeping with basketball, recent Hall of Fame inductee Chris Webber has joined the cannabis industry in Motown.
C-Webb & cannabis
Legendary Sacramento Kings’ power forward is getting his hands in on the sticky icky in Michigan. Last week, Chris Webber broke grown for a new facility likely to become a dispensary in Detroit. Webber invests approximately 50 million into the cannabis conservatory. The move is full of irony: the groundbreaking took place less than a mile from the foundation of an old General Motors factory. If you know anything about Motown, you are aware of GM’s role is state’s rich history.
Furthermore, the move comes after Chris Webber was inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame earlier this year. Did we fail to mention that Webber mutually parted ways with TNT right before his induction? It is a move eerily similar to NBA Hall of Famer Paul Pierce leaving ESPN and directly entering the cannabis industry. Nevertheless, Chris Webber’s move is welcomed and anticipated in Motor City.
Webber began Webber Wellness, the progenitor company in which he runs his bus business, in the beginning of 2015 following the coupling up with his perpetual business partner Levetta Willis. The legendary power forward initially met Levetta during his time playing for the NBA. Ms. Willis began a sneaker company known as Dada Supreme. During that time, she was in search of a partner. Ideally, her business partner ought to be a player. Shockingly, she brought in Webber with an owner’s stake in Dada as long as he wore the shoes on the hardwood. Today, Webber and Willis plan to increase the brand with multiple retail locations across the U.S. within the next few years. The initial sites will spring up in the first in Detroit. Webber is no stranger to cannabis investments. Before the $50 million investment, C-Webb invested upwards of $15 million in the cannabis industry.
The history of cannabis in Michigan
Cannabis culture in Motown has been flourishing since the 1970s. One model is the city of Ann Arbor through the Counterculture Era. Throughout the ‘70s, Ann Harbor decided to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of cannabis. The town believed that minor amounts of bud were not worth incarceration. It was also not worth taxpayer money. Ann Arbor was the only city in the state to pass such a pro-cannabis law. It would not be until late 2012 when the neighboring town, Kalamazoo, would enact similar legislation. Since then, the entire state has enacted recreational cannabis laws for residents. The cannabis company in Michigan has been booming, to say the absolute least.
As the industry continues to reach new heights once deemed impossible, more and more entrepreneurs are getting in on the action. Notwithstanding the Great Lakes States providing medical cannabis to patients for a bit under a decade, Motown is relatively green (pun intended) to the recreational aspect of cannabis. Although Michigan accomplished a historical breakthrough in retail sales of cannabis, more will be on the way with help from emerging entrepreneurs like Chris Webber. The NBA Hall of Famer believes the operation will be up-and-running by March Madness. Although that is some quick turnaround time, we can’t wait to see how the legend impacts the cannabis industry in the city and state he gave his all.