Dion Waiters was playing against the Bucks last season. (David Beasley)
On Thursday, Oct. 7th, the Miami Heat were on their way to Los Angeles after their 124-108 victory over the Phoenix Suns. While on the team plane Dion Waiters, Miami shooting guard “overdosed” on edibles.
Sources disclosed to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, and Adrian Wojnarowski, “Waiters experienced a panic attack on the team’s charter flight Thursday night after consuming a THC-infused edible.”
Evoking the classic Stephen A. Smith, “stay off the weed,” argument for professional athletes. After the plane landed in Los Angeles, the Heat guard received medical attention.
“Waiters had a reaction to ‘gummies,” Windhorst and Wojnaraki reported. “Waiters missed the game in Phoenix because of a stomachache and was seeking relief when he took an edible he was unfamiliar with.”
The NBA has strict anti-drug rules, including any form of THC. Officials for the Heat have announced that Waiters will be handed a 10-game suspension for conduct detrimental to the team. This time off also comes without pay missing out on over $800 thousand throughout those ten games.
Waiters has already missed all of the team’s first nine games this season due to a previous suspension; he also missed time in the preseason for what the team listed as “personal reasons.”
They are missing more time after this incident after being listed as inactive due to illness for Friday’s game against the Lakers. On Saturday, Waiters did go back to Miami with the team. However, it is unknown how long until he is labeled as active.
He has been stamped as active for two games this season but has yet to suit up for or even have a seat on the bench. He is losing his slot in the rotation to the two rookie guards, Tyler Herro and Kendrick Nunn. Both of the young players are not taking much time to adjust to the league.
If Waiters misses just four more games this season, he will lose his $1.2 million contract bonus, for this season Waiters is set to $24 million on his contract.
Inking his four-year, $52 million contract in 2017, Waiters has been plagued by injuries since. In 2017-2018, Waiters only played in 30 games and 44 in his 2018-2019 campaign. He did not participate in any games for the entirety of 2018 due to a January ankle surgery.
The twenty-seven-year-old guard has been on three teams after leaving Syracuse University and being drafted fourth overall to the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2012 and playing in Cleveland until 2015 when he was shipped off to Oklahoma City. That being the shortest stint of his career moving to the Heat in 2016.
Waiters career started with early promise a player that did not begin in college. He earned a spot on the 2013 NBA All-Rookie First Team.
However, even as a rookie, his injuries forced him to miss time. As a rookie, he missed twenty-one games that year due to an ankle sprain.
With Waiters missing out on so many games already in this NBA season, this was not something that bodes well for the Miami shooting guard.