Ja Morant: NBA All-Star receives suspension


Hailey Steidle, Staff writer

On Friday, March 3, just hours after the Nuggets game in Denver, Colorado, a star player, Ja Morant, was seen hosting an Instagram live from inside a local nightclub. In the live he could be seen holding up a handgun with his left-hand multiple times. Shortly after the video was originally posted, Morant deactivated both his Instagram and Twitter accounts. The NBA League shortly after announced that they would be investigating his handling of the firearm, the investigation resulted in an eight-game suspension for the star player and left many fans questioning thepath that he is heading down
both on and off the court. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver released a statement in which he announced both the suspensions and called the actions taken by Morant as “irresponsible, reckless and potentially very dangerous.” Shortly after the incident and eight-game suspension, Morant
entered a counseling program at a Florida facility. When he was there, he stated that he was able to learn that it was okay to express his feelings and worked on different stress handling techniques. He left the facility just in time to host a series of interviews on Wednesday regarding the situation in the nightclub.
He had claimed that the gun that was seen in the video was not his, however, he did not specify who the gun belonged to or how it ultimately ended up in his personal possession. Morant not only conducted a series of interviews about the situation, but also referenced several past events that he has
been involved in including, a fight with a 17-year-old during a basketball game located in his backyard, a confrontation with a security guard at a Memphis high school and a postgame confrontation that led to an NBA investigation. He regarded these events in a statement made on Wednesday claiming “The majority of the things that’s happened in the past, obviously, I kind of put myself into by even being there, but all the incidents you’ve seen recently, most of them is a lie.” When he was asked to give comments on these most recent actions he stated, “I regret all that. I can’t wait to back out there on the floor, knowing what my punishment is. I accept that, and I feel like I deserve that punishment for my mistakes and what I did. But when I get back out there, I’m going to be ready to go and ready to push for a ring” and “I realize what I have to lose, and for us as a group, what we have to lose.” Morant’s suspension will be ending before the Monday night game against the Dallas Mavericks. He has since stated that he will not be joining the team for this upcoming game, claiming that he needs to take some extra time to prepare physically. Many fans are now left to hope he learns from past mistakes and focuses on his game for the remainder of the season.