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#pounditWednesday, October 4, 2023

Ja Morant may have committed big NBA gun violation

Ja Morant looking on

Jan 26, 2022; San Antonio, Texas, USA; Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant (12) during the first half against the San Antonio Spurs at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

Ja Morant has been suspended by the Memphis Grizzlies for at least two games after he flashed a gun in an Instagram live video over the weekend, and it seems likely that he will face discipline from the NBA as well.

Morant shared the video on social media the same night the Grizzlies lost to the Nuggets in Denver. It appears he was at a strip club in Colorado at the time. You can see the clip here.

As ESPN’s Bobby Marks pointed out, there is a section of the collective bargaining agreement between the NBA and NBA Players Association that outlines rules about firearms and other weapons. Section 9(a) states in part that players are not permitted to possess a firearm or other deadly weapon “whenever a player is traveling on any NBA-related business, whether on behalf of the player’s Team, the NBA, or any League-related entity.”

Morant was in Denver for the Grizzlies’ game against the Nuggets. Based on the CBA language, he should not have been in possession of a firearm at all, regardless of whether he broke any laws.

The NBA is investigating the video. While Morant issued a statement apologizing for his actions, it is unclear what he will tell league officials about the incident. He could say the gun did not belong to him, though most people who have viewed the video do not think it matters.

It is also possible that the NBA will take past incidents into account. Morant was sued in September 2022 for allegedly punching a teenager with a gun during a pickup basketball game at the home of the Grizzlies star. Morant was said to have possessed a gun in the waistband of his pants during that incident. A few days before that alleged incident, Morant was said to have threatened a mall security guard. On top of that, members of Morant’s entourage were accused of threatening members of the Pacers’ traveling party after a January game.


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