Ja Morant has been dominating lately, but it has been in the headlines rather than on the court. And due to the suspension that stemmed from his issues, he’ll apparently take even more time getting back as he gets himself reconditioned.
Morant hasn’t played since March 3rd, when, after a game against the Nuggets, he took to Instagram to post a video of himself holding a gun in a nightclub. He was effectively suspended while the league and the Grizzlies investigated, which eventually culminated in an 8-game absence for the star point guard.
Ja Morant Finished With 8-Game Suspension For Off-Court Troubles
It wasn’t the first off-court issue for Morant during the 2022-23 season. He has been in the news for allegedly beating up a minor, showing up to a mall with an intimidation mob when his mother was having an issue at a Foot Locker, and his crew potentially pointing guns at the Pacers’ team bus.
Whether an eight game suspension is enough for the troubles that Ja Morant has caused is questionable, but his team likely can’t survive without him as they reach the home stretch of the regular season and beyond.
When Morant left, the Grizzlies were somewhat comfortably in second place in the Western Conference, but have since squandered that lead to the Sacramento Kings. The teams are technically tied, with the tiebreaker going to the Kings, so Memphis still has a chance to pull away should Morant return at full strength in order to help his team.
But when will that be? His suspension is over after the Grizzlies win over the Warriors, but he apparently won’t play in Monday’s big game.
Morant Won’t Play Monday Against Mavericks
Every game between playoff hopefuls in the West has been important over the last month, including the back-to-back meetings between the Grizzlies and the Mavericks last week. Both Kyrie Irving and Luka Dončić were out with injuries for Dallas, and Memphis was able to pick up two victories against a team without its stars.
The Grizzlies have officially listed Ja Morant as out for Monday's home game against Dallas. Morant is eligible to return from an eight-game suspension but will sit as he continues his return to competition reconditioning.
More NBA from me: https://t.co/A6ycVmnrjq https://t.co/udZA3Ufwwi
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) March 19, 2023
Both Irving and Doncic are questionable yet again for the third matchup in nine days between the two franchises, and their status is unknown. What is known is that Morant will be held out of the first game that he is eligible to return, apparently as he reconditions himself back into game shape and up to game speed.
The Grizzlies have fared well without Ja Morant over the last two weeks, though their victories have come over the Spurs, two over the shorthanded Mavericks, and two against a Warriors team that simply can’t win on the road.
There are some winnable games on the Grizzlies’ schedule. They’ll play two home games against the Rockets after they play the Mavs, followed by contests against the Hawks and the Magic.
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