Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant is considered one of the future faces of the NBA. The former Murray State star won the NBA Rookie of the Year following the 2019-20 season and has looked every bit the part of a franchise cornerstone on the court.
There could now be some trouble brewing off the court. According to TMZ Sports, the 23-year-old Morant is being sued by a 17-year-old for punching him during a July pickup basketball game in Tennessee. The suit itself was filed back in September and alleges that the incident took place at Morant’s residence.
Per court documents, the teenager “accidentally” hit Morant in the face after throwing the ball in his direction during a heated argument. The accuser claims that Morant struck him “with a closed fits, knocking him to the ground.” Allegedly, Morant continued to punch the teen while he was still on the ground.
Morant admitted to the police that he did indeed strike the unnamed teen, but that it came in self defense as the plaintiff approached the Grizzlies star “as if he wanted to fight” while making verbal threats.
- Ja Morant stats (2022-23): 27.2 PPG, 6.2 RPG, 8.0 APG, 46% shooting, 31% 3-point
Police reportedly investigated the allegations for several weeks before submitting the case to the district attorney’s office. A short while later, the DA declined prosecution. At this point, it’s not known what the plaintiff is seeking in damages.
The No. 2 overall pick of the Grizzlies back in 2019, Morant inked a five-year, $194.3 million extension back in July of 2022. It’s highly unlikely that this incident will impact said contract. Though, the NBA will certainly look into what happened and could hand Ja Morant some type of discipline.