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Police conduct welfare check on Ja Morant after cryptic Instagram post

The former NBA Rookie of the Year was suspended by the Memphis Grizzlies earlier this month after video circulated online of him wielding a gun.
Police conduct welfare check on Ja Morant after cryptic Instagram post
Posted at 10:47 AM, May 25, 2023

Police in Tennessee say Memphis Grizzlies star Ja Morant "is fine" after conducting a welfare check on the suspended NBA player following cryptic — now deleted — messages that appeared on his Instagram account.

The social media posts included messages saying "Love ya ma," "Love ya pops," and "You da greatest babygirl love ya," all followed by blue heart emojis. A final message simply said, "Bye."

A Shelby County Sheriff's Office spokesperson told the Associated Press that deputies checked on Morant, who said he is "taking a break from social media."

The 23-year-old former Rookie of the Year was suspended from all team activities by the Grizzlies earlier this month after video circulated on social media of him wielding a gun, for a second time. 

SEE MORE: NBA star Ja Morant addresses March video of him with a gun

In March, Morant was suspended by the NBA for eight games without pay and entered a counseling program after he live-streamed video on Instagram while holding a gun inside a Denver nightclub. Glendale police launched an investigation into the incident but said Morant wouldn't face charges due to a lack of evidence.  

At the time, Morant apologized, saying he was going to "take some time away to get help and work on learning better methods of dealing with stress."  

While the first suspension cost him about $669,000 in forfeited salary, a potential second suspension by the league could be much more expensive as his five-year, $194 million contract with the Grizzlies is set to begin next season. 

Morant averaged 26 points per game during the current NBA season and helped Memphis secure the second overall seed in the Western Conference playoffs before eventually losing a six-game series to LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers.

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