Memphis Grizzlies star point guard once again finds himself in hot water after another video of him surfaced on Instagram Live brandishing a firearm. After his first offense of this in a Denver nightclub, the league handed him what many thought to be a rather light eight-game suspension.
With him repeating the offense not even three months after his suspension, there is a strong chance that the league gives him a much harsher suspension this time. The Grizzlies have already suspended him from team activities indefinitely, however, they will likely change this suspension to match whatever punishment the league hands down.
There is a chance that this type of behavior continues from Morant, and there is a case to be made that it could potentially be in the Grizzlies best interest to move on from him. While Morant has one of the highest ceilings in the entire league, he may not be worth all of the trouble for Memphis, and they would be able to get a plethora of incredible pieces for him.
The case to trade Morant would come down to the team believing that he does not have it in him to avoid these types of situations. In their playoff series against the Los Angeles Lakers, head coach Taylor Jenkins was quoted as saying, “We’re far from where we need to be from a maturity standpoint”. Morant is the clear leader of the team and the culture setter for the Grizzlies.
Moving him from the team would allow the Grizzlies to bring in another generational-level talent that could better lead the team. It is not as if the Grizzlies are an awful team without Morant, and with a different star on the team, they could come back in the 2023-24 season with an even more talented roster. In the past two seasons, Memphis has been able to muster a 33-17 record without him in the lineup.
Along with this, Morant’s style of play leaves him very susceptible to injuries. He is best known for his high-flying dunks and ultra-athletic plays. As we have seen from Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook, this style of play is not the most sustainable. While Morant is still very young and likely still has a few years before any of his athleticism leaves him, this is when his trade value will be the highest.
While Morant has had his troubles off of the court, he is still the face of the franchise in Memphis and has the entire city behind him. He is one of the most exciting players in the league and is the reason why the Grizzlies are one of the most talked about players in the league. Along with this, if he is able to stay out of trouble and begin to develop his outside shot, he could quickly become the best point guard that the league has to offer.
With this most recent event on Instagram live, there is a strong chance that many teams would not be willing to take a risk on Morant, and as a result of this, it may be tough to find a trade partner willing to give up the assets that a player like Morant should yield.
He has been able to make the All-Star game in two of his four seasons in the NBA, and shows no signs of slowing down. If his suspension does not end up being over 25 games, there is a chance that if he starts off his season strong, he could still make it in the 2023-24 season as well. Morant has the potential to be a generational player, and as a result of this, there is a very strong case why the Grizzlies should hold off on trading him.
Despite the trouble that he has gotten off of the court, the Grizzlies should still hold onto Morant for the time being. He is the face of their franchise, and everyone in the city loves him. Even when he is not able to play, he still finds a way to keep all eyes on the Grizzlies, and that is something that very few players are capable of doing.
Along with this, he possesses out-of-this-world athleticism that can not be taught. It is likely that the NBA gives him a hefty suspension, and this could be the perfect opportunity for the coaching staff to really hone in on developing his jump shot to complement his elite ability to score around the hoop.
If Morant finds himself in a situation similar to this one again, however, it should be the final straw for Memphis and they should begin looking for trade partners to take on the young guard.
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