The Memphis Grizzlies find themselves proceeding through these beginning stages of the 2023-24 season without superstar Ja Morant in tow, as he’ll be held out of action for the first 25 games of the year due to a league-issued suspension following yet another off-court transgression involving a firearm.
Though we may be less than a week into the campaign, in-game results for the team have proven to be quite underwhelming as a ramification, with Taylor Jenkins’ club going winless through two outings while, as a whole, they rank a lowly 26 in offensive rating (100.5) and 24 in net rating (-5.8), all of which are rather unsurprising turnouts considering just how vital the point guard has proven to be throughout his four-year tenure.
Without question, Morant is truly one of the game’s brightest stars when found on the floor thanks to his tremendous attributes ranging from top-notch scoring skills to off-the-charts athleticism.
That said, though cliche, the best ability is availability, and, sadly, the 24-year-old has struggled with this quite considerably since coming into the association back in 2019, especially over the past year and change due to several circumstances that, frankly, could have been avoided with proper judgment skills.
During a recent interview with CNN’s Chris Wallace, NBA legend and Hall of Fame player Charles Barkley discussed Morant’s troubling antics, blasting him for his poor decision-making skills off of the hardwood.
Charles Barkley sounds off on Grizzlies star Ja Morant in recent interview
"“He’s caught with a gun, he gets suspended and then, less than two months later, he gets filmed again on Instagram with a gun and you’re like, ‘Kid can’t be that stupid,’” Barkley said, as transcribed by Wallace and Ben Church. “[The] kid is getting paid close to $100 million and the only thing you have to do is don’t be a fool. Just play basketball. Ain‘t like it’s a real job. We’re not like teachers. We’re not like firemen. We’re not like policemen. We’re not somebody who’s in the service. We’re not a doctor. Those are five real jobs. Real jobs [with] people who will never make a lot of money and all you have to do is dribble a stupid basketball and stay out of trouble.”"
As noted by CNN, this is by no means the first time Barkley has criticized Morant for his questionable actions, as he’s already gone on record to call the star guard a “fool” in the past regarding this current situation.
The former league MVP-turned-TNT analyst has never shied away from voicing his opinion on controversial subjects and stated during his talk with Wallace that “you lose credibility” when withholding truth from listeners.
This matter regarding Morant has proven to be no exception.
Morant may have some work to do to fix his public image, but there’s no work to be done to claim FanDuel Sportsbook’s stellar new NBA League Pass promo! Bet $5 or more (with a $10 deposit) on the Grizzlies’ moneyline odds in any game and you’ll win three free months of NBA League Pass! If the Grizz win the game, you’ll get an extra $150 in bonus bets too. Sign up for FanDuel now!