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Tee Morant, who is the father of Ja Morant, discussed his son during an appearance at the Up Next Elite Camp in New Orleans and spoke about what he believes are misconceptions about why the Memphis Grizzlies star found himself in trouble off the court.
“My son didn’t get in trouble cause of people around him,” Tee Morant said. “He got in trouble because of his decisions.”
“My son didn’t get in trouble cause of people around him. He got in trouble because of his decisions.”
Tee Morant speaks to the attendees at the Up Next Elite Camp in New Orleans. One of the topics the kids asked about today was how to handle when people are talking about you. pic.twitter.com/DNtfLfmzBy
The NBA suspended Ja Morant for 25 games in June after he was seen on Instagram Live holding what appeared to be a gun.
The suspension was the second one for the two-time All-Star within a matter of months, as he was also suspended for eight games in March after video appeared to show him with a gun at a Denver nightclub.
“To the kids who look up to me, I’m sorry for failing you as a role model,” Morant said in a statement following the second suspension. “I promise I’m going to be better. To all of my sponsors, I’m going to be a better representation of our brands. And to all of my fans, I’m going to make it up to you, I promise.”
Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn
Ja Morant statement: pic.twitter.com/KJCxTVEIRj
The suspensions were a culmination of a number of problematic headlines for the face of the Grizzlies.
A mall security guard told police someone in a group that included Morant pushed him in the head following a confrontation.
What’s more, a high school basketball prospect sued him and alleged that both the Grizzlies guard and Morant’s friend, Davonte Pack, punched him in the head. The high schooler also said Morant went into his house and emerged with a gun following the initial fight.
Tim MacMahon of ESPN noted it was Pack’s Instagram Live account where Morant was seen with the gun, which ultimately led to the second suspension. Pack was also banned from the Grizzlies’ FedEx Forum following a game against the Indiana Pacers last season.
Not only was he escorted away from his seat because he stepped on the court in an effort to confront members of the Pacers, but he was also part of a postgame confrontation with the visiting team’s traveling party.
“After the game, following an argument between Morant’s associates and members of the Pacers’ traveling party in the arena’s loading dock area, a red laser was pointed from an SUV in which Morant was riding,” MacMahon wrote. “An NBA investigation ‘could not corroborate that any individual threatened others with a weapon.'”
Yet Tee Morant was clear that his son should take responsibility for his own actions and the off-court issues shouldn’t be blamed on those around him.