The Golden State Warriors are visiting the Memphis Grizzlies on Thursday, in the latest installment of the budding, intense rivalry (if you can call it that). But it will be missing a little, uhh .... smoke, for lack of a better word, as Grizzlies All-Star point guard Ja Morant will not play in the game.
Morant has made numerous headlines this season for more than just his video game numbers and outlandish dunks. He’s been the subject of numerous allegations this season, ranging from threatening a security guard’s life to punching a teenager.
But it all came to a head a few days ago, when the star did something very silly: hours after a game against the Denver Nuggets, Morant went live on his Instagram account from what appeared to be a nightclub ... and flashed a gun.
Morant has sat out the two games since the incident, but on Wednesday the police department in Glendale, Colorado — where the incident took place — released a statement noting that, “No disturbances were reported, and no citizens or patrons of the club came forward to make a complaint. The investigation also concluded that no one was threatened or menaced with the firearm and in fact no firearm was ever located. Although the video was concerning enough to prompt an investigation, there was not enough available evidence to charge anyone with a crime.”
It’s worth noting that Colorado is an open carry state and Glendale, unlike Denver, is not an exception. In other words, there’s nothing illegal about Morant having a firearm at a nightclub, so long as he has a permit.
But that doesn’t mean the Grizzlies are okay with it and so, even with the police department absolving Morant of any law-breaking behavior, Memphis is free to take whatever action they deem necessary. So while some expected Morant to return to the court after the press release, the Grizzlies immediately sent out a release of their own, stating that Morant will remain away from the team for “at least the next four games.”
Statement from the Memphis Grizzlies pic.twitter.com/B3gk6injgK— Grizzlies PR (@GrizzliesPR) March 8, 2023
That, of course, includes Thursday’s game against the Warriors.
Hopefully Morant gets whatever help he needs.