Ja Morant

Memphis Grizzlies Announce Devastating Ja Morant News

Home / Sports / Memphis Grizzlies Announce Devastating Ja Morant News

By Melanie VanDerveer on January 9, 2024 at 9:30 AM EST

The Memphis Grizzlies have announced that star player Ja Morant will be out for the rest of the season after suffering a labral tear in his right shoulder and needing to undergo surgery. 

The NBA star was out for the first 25 games of the season after being suspended for flashing a firearm on a livestream twice earlier this year and only played nine games before this injury.

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Ja Morant To Undergo Season-Ending Shoulder Surgery

Ja Morant
ABC24 Memphis - YouTube

Morant, 24, has been pivotal in the team’s success since being selected second overall in the 2019 draft. The Grizzlies are currently 13th in the Western Conference with a 13-23 record. 

Morant was ruled out of Sunday’s game vs. the Phoenix Suns because of shoulder soreness. Grizzlies head coach Taylor Jenkins said that Morant’s shoulder issue began while on the road recently.

“The soreness really crept up the other day on the road. We’re still trying to get more evaluation, so hopefully in the next day or two we have a better idea,” Jenkins said after Sunday’s game. “Obviously, the medical team felt best just to put him in a sling just to be positive there, but more evaluation to come.” 

On Monday night, the team announced the news that no Morant or Grizzlies fan wanted to hear.

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“At Saturday’s training session, Morant suffered a subluxation of his right shoulder. Following ongoing soreness and instability, Morant underwent an MRI that revealed an underlying labral tear. Morant will undergo season-ending surgery and is expected to make a full recovery ahead of the 2024-2025 season,” the update reads. 

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Memphis was 6-3 in the games Morant played since his return to the court. Morant has averaged 25.1 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 8.1 assists per game while shooting 47.1% from the field and 27.5% from three-point range in the nine games he played this season. Before his return after his suspension, the team was 11-10. 

The Grizzlies next game is Tuesday night vs. the Dallas Mavericks. 

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Ja Morant Just Returned To The Court After A 25-Game Suspension

Ja Morant
Malika Andrews ESPN - YouTube

Morant just made his big return to the court after his 25-game suspension in mid-December. After only playing three games, he was named Western Conference Player of the Week. 

Just before returning from his suspension, Morant opened up about what he learned during his time on suspension.

“It’s been a process. Obviously, I'm thankful for, you know, the support I had during this time. Obviously, it’s not easy, you know, not being out there on the floor and having to watch, but you know with everything else, being around the team, being able to practice, being able to travel, the guys just constantly talking to me and vice versa, it’s been good,” he told reporters during his first public presser since his suspension began.

“I’ve pretty much just been focusing on me, honestly, outside of the basketball stuff. But basketball-wise, just becoming more a leader with my talk.”

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Ja Morant
NBA on ESPN - YouTube

The Grizzlies star said that the suspension was "tough" and admitted that he had "some horrible days."

"It was tough, but like I said, to start this, with the support that I had throughout this process, it definitely helped me a lot. It’s pretty much all I could lean on at that time,” he said.

“Obviously, basketball is something I’ve been doing pretty much my whole life. Something that’s therapeutic for me. Obviously taking that away, it makes it tougher," he continued. "But, like I said, I had the right people around me, from my family to the organization and to my other partners that helped me along in the process.”

While he admitted that he made a lot of mistakes, some that never even reached the public, he doesn't exactly regret anything.

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“It’s been tough. A lot of learning, a lot of teaching. It’s been a process, obviously, I wouldn’t say I regret it, but I’m not happy that it happened,” he continued. “But I’m also grateful that I had this opportunity to reflect and do things that I felt like was not only needed for me but for my family as well for us to realize pretty much you know all that’s at stake, ways we can keep each other happy and how we just have each other’s back.”

Ja Morant Just Gifted LSU Basketball Players Exclusive Ja 1s

Ja Morant Nike Billboard

In the past few months, Morant has gifted multiple college programs that he has ties with his Ja 1 sneakers. The LSU men's basketball team were the most recent recipients, and they got an exclusive team-themed colorway - purple, white and gold, with an LSU symbol below the Nike sign.

LSU basketball coach Matt McMahon shared the news with his team.

"As you know, we talked before, we had the privilege of coaching Ja Morant for a couple of years," McMahon said. "With that said, Ja was kind enough to partner up with Nike and design some special Ja 1s for LSU."

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Duke was the first school to get Ja 1s with a team themed colorway. Other schools with ties to Morant who got shoes includes Murray State and Radford receiving the "Ember Glow" Ja 1s, as well as the University of Memphis volleyball team. Mississippi Valley State, where Morant's sister Teniya plays basketball, was gifted the "Zombie" Ja 1s.

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