According to the San Antonio News-Express, this is the result of a weird loophole in the Collective Bargaining Agreements:
Steroids and performance-enhancing drugs were added to the league's substance abuse policy in the last round of negotiations with the players' union. One interesting aspect of the agreement dictated that any time there is a penalty handed down when a performance enhancer is involved, the offending substance is to be identified.The articles goes on to explain how little of a role performance-enhancers play in the NBA, including this Stern quotable:
"Illicit substances that could assist athletes in strength sports (such as weightlifting and football), power sports (such as baseball), or endurance sports (such as cycling or marathon running), are not likely to be of benefit to NBA players."That's all fine and good, but why does this mean the drug has to be made public? In Hunter's case, the league could escape PR damage by chalking it up to an accident. I guess that, as far as the league's image is concerned, performance-enhancer abuse is better than weed. If an NBA guy is juicing, it just comes off as bizarre and misguided, as opposed to dishonest (other sports) or debaucherous (other drugs).