You know what, I googled this very phrase a couple of weeks ago, because I was curious based on what I had read about an incident where some of Ja's entourage was banned from Fedex Forum following some jawing with some Indiana players. Following that game there was a further altercation Ja's entourage had with the Indiana players in the loading area of Fedex Forum which included a laser being shined on the Indiana team which some people thought was from a gun:
“Following a game between the Indiana Pacers and Memphis Grizzlies on Jan. 29 in Memphis, acquaintances of Grizzlies star Ja Morant aggressively confronted members of the Pacers traveling party near the team’s bus in the loading area of FedExForum, and later someone in a slow-moving SUV — which Morant was riding in — trained a red laser on them.”
Morant reportedly “aggressively confronted” individuals on the Pacers, which is bad enough — this incident should have been over during the game.
The details only continue to get more concerning as the report continues:
“The two members of the traveling party who spoke to The Athletic said that they did not see who shined the laser from the SUV. They also don’t know if the laser was attached to a gun, but they believed it was. A Pacers security guard in the loading area at the time remarked: ‘That’s 100 percent a gun.’
‘We felt we were in grave danger,’ one person who was present said.”
According to the report, these unnamed individuals felt they were in “grave danger” when they saw a red laser pointed at them from what they suspected to be a gun.
While the Pacers did not alert the police, they did file a report with the NBA. The Grizzlies reportedly “complied completely” with the investigation and are “abiding by” its findings.
Here is what league spokesman Mike Bass told The Athletic:
“NBA Security and league investigators conducted an investigation interviewing numerous eyewitnesses and reviewing video surveillance following allegations made by the Indiana Pacers organization regarding a postgame incident on Jan. 29. While we substantiated that a postgame situation arose that was confrontational, based on interviews and other evidence gathered, we could not corroborate that any individual threatened others with a weapon.
Whether there was a gun or not it's not a good look. Then there was this from Shannon Sharpe, who had his own altercation with Ja and the Grizzlies in LA:
“I wish Ja would realize he’s not a thug,” Sharpe said on his “Undisputed” show. “Ja is a really good basketball player. Ja did everything he could to lift himself and his family out of this environment and to get away from this. And for some reason, he wants to surround himself with these types of people. Why? Bruh, you not hard. That’s not your life. People that [are] in that life would give anything to be in your life.”
For some reason, you got a $200 million contract, and you want people in the NBA to think you hood,” Sharpe said. “To think you gangster because you roll with these types of people. Bruh, you putting yourself in harm’s way when you don’t have to!
“Nobody looks at you, Ja, and thinks, ‘man, that’s a thug; he hood. He down, he ’bout that.’ You not! Stop pretending! All you do is yap and talk about, ‘oh, I’m going to let him live and see another day; I’m going to do this.’ You not gonna do nothing! What you gon’ do is get yourself in trouble. Put yourself and your family in harm’s way when you don’t have to!”
I don't agree with Shannon Sharpe or Skip Bayless on many things but I agree with him on this take - I don't think Ja is a thug but he's trying to make it out like he is. He's got a good dad that kept him on the straight and narrow and has a great life ahead of him but he seems to be hanging with the wrong crowd of suckups and sycophants.