3 moves Grizzlies need to make after devastating Ja Morant injury

Memphis Grizzlies v New Orleans Pelicans
Memphis Grizzlies v New Orleans Pelicans / Sean Gardner/GettyImages
1 of 3

Monday night, the Memphis Grizzlies made the grueling announcement that superstar Ja Morant will be sidelined for the remainder of the 2023-24 season as he opts to undergo surgery for a labrum tear in his right shoulder.

Seen donning a sling during Sunday's bout against the Phoenix Suns, the initial belief was that the guard would be viewed as day-to-day, with coach Taylor Jenkins seemingly suggesting in a postgame presser that the reasoning for the medical apparel was largely precautionary.

Alas, fast forward 24 hours later and it's apparent that Morant's ailment was far more severe than the team had initially thought, thus bringing an abrupt end to a season that, for him, had only just begun (made his debut on December 19 following a 25-game suspension to start the year).

What's next for Grizzlies with Ja Morant now out for the season?

With the cornerstone now shelved, one can only assume that Memphis' mindset and overall game plan heading into these final 46 games is bound to drastically change.

As a result of Morant's devastating injury news, the Grizzlies must now look to make a few reactionary moves.

3. Sign Jacob Gilyard to a standard contract

With Morant's season-ending surgery, it opens up both a roster spot and a vacancy at the point guard position for the Grizzlies.

Signing Jacob Gilyard could be a great way to address both of these rotational dilemmas.

Assuming Memphis' focus is no longer attempting to claw their way toward a Play-In Tournament position following a 13-23 start, for the remainder of the year one of the biggest objectives for this coaching staff will likely be to try and help develop some of the younger talents they have on the roster.

Though only attached to a two-way contract, Gilyard had already seen plenty of action on the varsity team this season, as he's played in 20 separate games already, largely when Morant was suspended, and managed to endear himself to both the fanbase and his peers with his production.

Of course, due to the restrictions that come with a two-way contract, the guard is only allowed to be called up to the NBA for 50 total games, meaning his time for eligibility is already inching closer to a close.

However, if he were to be signed to a standard contract for the remainder of the season, coach Jenkins could call upon him whenever he so pleases, which would not only provide Gilyard valuable experience but also add to the depth of the team's incredibly shallow point guard position.

On top of his 20 games played with the Grizzlies this season, the 25-year-old also earned eight starts for the team where he saw numerous double-digit scoring finishes and averaged 6.9 points, 3.8 assists, and 1.8 rebounds while shooting 42.1 percent from deep.

Currently playing at an electrifying rate with the Memphis Hustle, where he's averaging 15.3 points and 9.0 assists on 40.6 percent shooting from distance, Gilyard is showing that he's more than deserving of some extra run at the NBA level.