Albuquerque Journal

No timetable for Morant’s return

Coach blasts his ‘poor choices’ and Memphis star may still face charges


LOS ANGELES — There’s no timetable for Ja Morant to return to the Memphis Grizzlies, and the All-Star guard knows he’s made “difficult decisions and poor choices” that he has to be accountabl­e for, coach Taylor Jenkins said Sunday night.

Morant was not with the team in Los Angeles for a game against the Clippers on Sunday and will not be present when the Grizzlies play the Lakers on Tuesday while the NBA investigat­es a social media post in which Morant appeared to be holding a gun.

Morant streamed the video on his Instagram account early Saturday of himself holding what appeared to be a gun at a nightclub, hours after playing in Denver. He said in a statement through the agency that represents him that he takes “full responsibi­lity” for his actions and that he was going to “take some time away to get help.”

On Monday, police in Colorado said they were investigat­ing Morant’s actions and whether he may have broken any laws. Morant’s video is believed to have been filmed in Glendale, a small enclave surrounded by Denver and known for its strip clubs and shopping centers.

Capt. Jamie Dillon said police did not receive any calls or complaints about Morant’s actions but began looking into them Saturday after learning about the video circulatin­g online.

Defense lawyers who have represente­d people on gun charges in Colorado say it is a misdemeano­r to possess a gun while under the influence of drugs or alcohol so that is one possible violation authoritie­s could be looking into.

Monday’s games

BLAZERS 110, PISTONS 104: In Detroit, Damian Lillard had 31 points, 13 rebounds and 12 assists, securing his second triple-double of the season and third of his career before the end of the third quarter, and Portland two straight for the first time in a month to strengthen its hopes of rallying into the playoffs.

HEAT 130, HAWKS 128: In Miami, Jimmy Butler had 26 points, Victor Oladipo and Caleb Martin each scored 21 off the Miami bench and the Heat moved 2½ games ahead of Atlanta in the race for the No. 7 spot in the Eastern Conference.

CAVS 118, CELTICS 114, OT: In Cleveland, Donovan Mitchell scored 40 points and Lamar Stevens fueled Cleveland to a win over Boston, which lost its second overtime game in less than 24 hours. Jaylen Brown scored 32 points and Malcolm Brogdon 24 for the Celtics, who didn’t arrive at their hotel in Cleveland until 2:30 a.m. after losing to the New York Knicks in double overtime on Sunday.

SIXERS 147, PACERS 143: In Indianapol­is, Joel Embiid scored 42 points, James Harden added 14 points, 20 assists and nine rebounds, and Philadelph­ia pulled away late to win a game virtually devoid of defense.

NUGGETS 118, RAPTORS 113: In Denver, Jamal Murray scored 24 points, Michael Porter Jr. had 20 and the Nuggets scored the last six points of the game to pull out a victory over Toronto.

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