According to the Memphis Grizzlies, their standout point guard will be absent from the club for “at least” the next two games.
After the National Basketball Association opened an investigation into a social media post by the guard after he live-streamed himself holding what appeared to be a gun at a nightclub, the Memphis Grizzlies announced on Saturday that Ja Morant would miss at least the team’s next two games. The announcement came shortly after the NBA announced opening the investigation.
As the Grizzlies announced that he would take some time away from the club, the superstar guard felt compelled to apologize on Saturday afternoon.
Morant streamed the video on his Instagram profile; however, after he terminated the feed, the footage was not saved to his page in Instagram’s archive. The Grizzlies played a game in Denver on Friday night, then on Saturday, they flew to Los Angeles, where they will face the Clippers on Sunday and the Lakers on Tuesday.
The Grizzlies have said there would be no additional remark about Morant’s absence from at least these two games.
Mike Bass, a spokesman for the NBA, said on Saturday that the league is aware of a social media post featuring Ja Morant and is investigating.
Morant might be subject to punishment or suspension from the league depending on what the league decides to do when it investigates the situation. According to the statement released by the Grizzlies, the earliest opportunity for Morant to play again in Thursday’s game against Golden State at home. It took time to determine whether he would go to Los Angeles with the Grizzlies, but he was expected to.
Morant, a two-time All-Star who averages 27.1 points and 8.2 assists per game, is leading the way for Memphis, presently at No. 2 in the rankings for the Western Conference.
At the very least, this is the second time in the most recent couple of weeks that Morant has been the focus of an inquiry by the league. After an incident on January 29 in Memphis, which Morant said resulted in a friend being barred from attending home games in Memphis for an entire year, the league opened an investigation into Morant’s behavior.
That incident occurred after a game in which the Indiana Pacers were the opponents. Citing unnamed sources, The Indianapolis Star and USA Today reported that multiple members of the Indiana Pacers saw a red dot pointed at them. Additionally, The Athletic said that a Pacers security guard believed the laser was attached to a gun.
The National Basketball Association has said that its inquiry has discovered no proof that anybody was threatened with a weapon, even though it has verified that some anonymous persons have been barred from the stadium.
Morant’s response to the event was a tweet saying that the claims “cast this horrible picture on myself and my clan.” & I put my brother on an attendance restriction for all home games for a year. unbelievable.” During the game on January 29, there was some yelling and screaming between players for the Pacers and friends of Morant who were sitting on the sideline. Davonte Pack, a close friend of Morant’s who was hauled out of the stadium while Pacers bench players yelled in Pack’s direction, was there when the incident occurred.
A civil action was filed against Pack and Morant following an event at Morant’s house this past summer, in which a 17-year-old claimed they attacked him. The incident occurred at Morant’s home. In January, the office of the district attorney for Shelby County issued a statement acknowledging being “informed of the occurrence.” Still, it said it had “determined that after a thorough evaluation of the circumstances, there was insufficient evidence for continuing with a prosecution.”
Morant, who was selected with the second overall choice in the 2019 NBA draft, has developed into a bona fide superstar. If he is chosen for an All-NBA team this year, the Grizzlies will increase the value of his agreement from $194 million to around $230 million over the following five years when it becomes effective.
In addition to that, he is a highly sought-after endorsement. Nike presented Morant’s first signature sneaker on Christmas, which will be available in the following weeks after its debut. In addition, earlier this week, Powerade announced that they had signed Morant to a multiyear endorsement contract.
The Washington Post published an article on the same day the Powerade deal was made public. The report was based on police records that the newspaper had obtained, and it detailed how Morant and some of his associates “have been accused of threatening and even violent behavior,” according to the newspaper.