NHL to address rise in cocaine use among players

Tuesday October 6th, 2015

Cocaine use among NHL players has been on the rise in recent years, and the league is preparing to the address the issue, according to Fox Sports.

The NHL regularly tests for performance-enhancing drugs, and last year added a test for recreational drugs. Last year, 800 of the 2,400 player urine samples collected were tested for recreational drugs, and the resulting report showed that the presence of cocaine was becoming more common.

In response, the league is in discussion with the NHL Players Association about adding cocaine to the list of banned substances that are tested for regularly.

“The number of [cocaine] positives are more than they were in previous years and they're going up,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told TSN. “I wouldn’t say it’s a crisis in any sense. What I’d say is drugs like cocaine are cyclical and you’ve hit a cycle where it's an ‘in’ drug again.”

NHLPA union executive Donald Fehr has already begun to address the use of cocaine among players and plans to address it again this year.

Zack Kassian placed in NHL substance abuse program, suspended

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