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History making effort by Morant gets praise by teammates

Ja Morant introduced as the newest team member of the Memphis Grizzlies. (Source: KFVS)
Ja Morant introduced as the newest team member of the Memphis Grizzlies. (Source: KFVS)
Published: May. 28, 2021 at 8:12 AM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The Memphis Grizzlies return to FedExForum with a first-round 1-1 series split with the Utah Jazz.

The Griz dropped game two Wednesday night by 12, 141-129. But, the 8th seed Grizzlies have something the top seed Jazz don’t have.

That’s Ja Morant, who’s showing on the national stage of the NBA Playoffs, he is among the very best, not just now, but in history. We all need to take a moment to appreciate how special Morant is, and what we’re witnessing from the 21-year-old Grizzly.

The 2nd year point guard putting up 47 points in the Grizzlies loss to the Jazz. That’s the most by any Grizzlies player in a regular or postseason game. It’s also the most in NBA history by a player 21 or younger.

Morant joined in a pretty exclusive club now.

He surpassed LeBron James, Luka Doncic, Tracy McGrady and Magic Johnson with his performance Thursday night. Morant has been thriving in national games, and on the playoff stage, scoring a combined 73 points through the first two games, which is more than anyone in NBA history. Passing Doncic, Kareem Abdul-Jabaar, Chris Paul and Julius Erving.

So despite the series being tied up at one apiece, if Morant keeps up those offensive numbers and the Grizzlies can stay out of foul trouble, there’s more winning in store for Memphis. 

”Blessed to be in the position that I’m in,” said Morant. “Be able to play the game at the highest level, but that’s not on my mind at all. We lost so that’s not on my mind at all.”

Head Coach Taylor Jenkins with a quick, understated acknowledgment.

“Honestly, heck of a game,” said Jenkins. 

“I looked up and saw he had 47,” said Forward Kyle Anderson. “I was like wow. That’s big time. We kind of knew the player he was, we knew he was highly capable of it. He’s just putting you guys on notice.”  

And Forward Jeran Jackson, Jr. takes it a step further.

”Wearing them down,” said Jackson. “You kind of kill their spirit a little bit. That’s what he was doing. Making the right plays, making the right reads, that’s what he was doing. I’m happy for him. Something he’s going to remember forever.”

As Morant eluded, he doesn’t care about the stats, it’s all about winning. Which is the attitude you want from your franchise star.

Fans will get the chance to see playoff Ja in action, Saturday when the series is at the Forum for the next two games.

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