NBA Commissioner's Decision On Ja Morant's Punishment Postponed Until After NBA Finals

Photo: Instagram/Ja Morant

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has made a decision regarding the disciplinary action against Ja Morant, the Memphis Grizzlies' star guard.

However, Silver has chosen to delay the announcement of the punishment until after the conclusion of the NBA Finals. Morant was initially suspended by the Grizzlies on May 14 pending a league review after a video surfaced on social media showing him brandishing a firearm.

In March, Morant had already received an eight-game suspension for a similar incident, which led to a meeting with Silver and other league officials. During his annual news conference before the NBA Finals, Silver stated that the player's past actions and history would be taken into account when determining the appropriate discipline this time.

Photo: Instagram/Ja Morant

He mentioned that additional information had been uncovered since the situation was first addressed. However, Silver explained that announcing the investigation's results during the middle of the series would be unfair to the players and teams involved, leading to the decision to postpone the announcement until after the Finals.

Since the NBA is currently in the offseason, Morant has been suspended indefinitely by the Grizzlies, which means that there would be no immediate changes in the next few weeks. Silver believed it was better to withhold any public announcement at the moment. He expressed the intention to disclose the outcome of the investigation shortly after the conclusion of the Finals.

When asked if Morant's eight-game suspension was too lenient in hindsight, Silver mentioned that Morant had come across as sincere and serious during their March meeting. He acknowledged that it was difficult to determine whether a longer suspension would have made a difference.

Silver stated that they were unsure what it would take to change Morant's behavior but expressed hope that the disciplinary process would be accompanied by actions from the players' association, Morant's team, and the people around him to create better circumstances going forward.

In addition to the Morant situation, Silver also addressed other notable issues during the news conference. One of them involved veteran referee Eric Lewis, who was not assigned to work the Finals due to an ongoing investigation into his social media activity.

The league is looking into whether Lewis used a "burner" account on Twitter to defend himself and other officials, which would violate league policy.

Silver also acknowledged the challenges faced by NBA teams, including the Denver Nuggets, regarding local television audiences due to disputes between regional sports networks, cable companies, and carriers. He referred to it as a "terrible issue" with no easy solution but expressed the league's commitment to resolving it during negotiations with its national television partners.

Regarding eligibility for postseason awards, Silver mentioned the introduction of a 65-game minimum for players in the future. The aim is to incentivize players to participate in more regular-season games. Silver emphasized the importance of a highly competitive regular season and stated that the 65-game requirement was agreed upon through negotiations with the players' association.

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Source: ESPN

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