Shocking and frankly terrifying news broke regarding Memphis Grizzlies superstar Ja Morant on Sunday afternoon. The story doesn’t quite paint the 2022 Most Improved Player or his associates in the most positive of lights either.
The Athletic delivered a bombshell report that detailed the shocking incident. It occurred last month after a game between Morant’s Grizzlies and the Indiana Pacers. “Associates of Ja Morant verbally accosted Pacers personnel and someone trained a red laser on them from a nearby SUV postgame on Jan. 29,” the publication tweeted. Reporting came courtesy of Bob Kravitz and Sam Amick.
Associates of Ja Morant verbally accosted Pacers personnel and someone trained a red laser on them from a nearby SUV postgame on Jan. 29.
“We felt we were in grave danger,” a person who was present said.
The NBA investigated the incident.
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) February 5, 2023
The report itself further laid out the unbelievable details.
Following a game between the Indiana Pacers and Memphis Grizzlies on Jan. 29 in Memphis, acquaintances of Grizzlies star Ja Morant aggressively confronted members of the Pacers traveling party near the team’s bus in the loading area of FedExForum, and later someone in a slow-moving SUV — which Morant was riding in — trained a red laser on them.
The two members of the traveling party who spoke to The Athletic said that they did not see who shined the laser from the SUV. They also don’t know if the laser was attached to a gun, but they believed it was. A Pacers security guard in the loading area at the time remarked: “That’s 100 percent a gun.”
“We felt we were in grave danger,” one person who was present said. The two sources who spoke to The Athletic requested anonymity because they fear retribution from those who confronted them. They said they considered filing a report with police but decided against it for the same reason.
The report noted that the Pacers made the NBA aware of the incident. A league spokesperson reportedly told the publication that they probed the incident as well.
According to the report, the incident may have stemmed from back-and-forths between both the Pacers and Grizzlies, as well as Morant’s brother and friends. After the game is when things got hairy. The Athletic wrote:
The verbal sparring continued intermittently for approximately 15 to 20 minutes, until Morant entered the loading area. He, Pack and the others dispersed into two vehicles. Morant, Pack and one other person got into an SUV, sources said. The first vehicle turned toward the bus before exiting up a ramp and out of the arena’s loading area. The SUV moved toward the Pacers bus, turned, slowed, and that was when members of the Pacers traveling party noticed a red laser coming from the car and being trained on players, coaches and others.
Certainly, an extremely troubling incident. The NBA world reacted to the shocking news on Sunday afternoon.
— John Hollinger (@johnhollinger) February 5, 2023
This story is BONKERS. https://t.co/SAdKviYH5S
— Morten Stig Jensen (@msjnba) February 5, 2023
I was at this game but wasn’t writing and left early. First I’ve heard of this postgame stuff, which as reported is tiresome at best and disturbing at worst. The on-court stuff in the game from Morant’s friend was already too much. https://t.co/7tfJKIT0Hx
— Chris Herrington (@ChrisHerrington) February 5, 2023
ja morant got so sick of the league making fun of how he’s “fake hard” that he had his boys point laser pointers at the pacers lol https://t.co/Jp75NMLkzt
— Take Foul (@TakeFoulShow) February 5, 2023
Taylor Jenkins was asked about this report.
“That was addressed internally. Aware of the investigation of the NBA. We were fully compliant with it. I think they came out with a statement saying nothing was corroborated or found. … That’s all I’m going to comment about.” https://t.co/ckGyr8YNRJ
— Damichael Cole (@DamichaelC) February 5, 2023
I told yall weeks ago, Ja is the new Iverson, for better or for worse. Love both to death but the parallels between the two are uncanny. I’ve seen this movie before.
We’re a few inevitable Grizzlies playoff flame outs before the media completely turns on him. https://t.co/gBhaPzU2EM
— Raheem Palmer (@iamrahstradamus) February 5, 2023
Good reporting here. I can tell you the Pacers were seriously concerned. And several different levels of security had to get involved. https://t.co/iwVXsFZWTh
— Scott Agness (@ScottAgness) February 5, 2023