Ja Morant suspended 25 games after most recent gun video
Jun 16, 2023, 9:00 AM | Updated: 12:11 pm
(Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)
After weeks of waiting, the NBA has finally unveiled their verdict on troubled superstar Ja Morant.
The league office announced Friday that Morant has been handed a 25-game ban, due to “conduct detrimental to the league”. The Memphis point guard will miss almost a third of the 2023-24 regular season, equaling to $7.6 million in salary loss.
The NBA’s statement included that Morant will have to meet certain conditions before he is able to return to playing basketball. Additionally, he is barred from all public league or team activities at this time, with the NBA prioritizing the player’s mental wellbeing during the suspension.
“Prior to his return to play, [Ja Morant] will be required to formulate and fulfill a program with the league that directly addresses the circumstances that led him to repeat this destructive behavior,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in the statement.
The following has been released by the NBA. pic.twitter.com/dzDSb4uCk3— NBA Communications (@NBAPR) June 16, 2023
Morant, 23, has been under scrutiny since a first video emerged in March of him brandishing a firearm at a Denver strip club. The league issued a eight-game suspension for the player at the time, with him returning to the team after spending a few days in a Florida rehabilitation center.
This is the second instance of Morant being filmed with a handgun, caught on a friend’s Instagram Live on May 13th. The investigation found that the player knew he was being streamed, making the incident that more concerning.
“I’m sorry for the harm I’ve done,” Morant said in a statment Friday. “To the kids who look up to me, I’m sorry for failing you as a role model. I promise I’m going to be better.”
Ja Morant statement: pic.twitter.com/KJCxTVEIRj— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 16, 2023
“I hope you’ll give me the chance to prove to you over time I’m a better man than what I’ve been showing you,” he continued.
Ja Morant has been a budding superstar in the NBA, becoming one of the league’s best-selling jerseys. A two-time All-Star, the 23-year-old averaged 26.2 PPG, 8.1 APG and 5.8 RPG in the 2022-23 regular season.