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NBA investigated incident involving Ja Morant’s acquaintances, red laser trained on Pacers staff after game [report]



© Petre Thomas | 2023 Jan 29

This is one of the wildest stories to come out of the NBA in a while.

On Sunday, The Athletic published a report detailing how the league recently investigated an incident where the Indiana Pacers traveling party accused Ja Morant’s acquaintances of threatening them after a game, including pointing a red dot sight at them from what the Pacers believed was a gun.

The red laser was seen from a “slow moving SUV” that drove by the Pacers’ traveling party near the team bus in the loading area of FedExForum. The SUV was filled with Morant’s acquaintances and Morant himself.

Via The Athletic:

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. The two sources who spoke to The Athletic requested anonymity because they fear retribution from those who confronted them. They said they considered filing a report with police but decided against it for the same reason.

Presently, the league says they weren’t able to uncover much during their investigation:

“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,” Bass said. “Certain individuals involved in the postgame situation and a related matter during the game that night have been subsequently banned from attending games in the arena. If additional information becomes available related to the postgame situation, the league office will conduct a further review.”

The incident took place after there was verbal sparring between the Pacers, Grizzlies, Morant’s father, Tee, and one of Morant’s longtime friends, Davonte Pack, who were seated courtside during a Jan. 29 game.

Pack was removed from the floor in the third quarter after he walked onto the court and “directed expletives” at multiple Pacers players. There was another confrontation postgame in the loading area near the Pacers team bus, where Morant’s crew allegedly directed threats toward the Pacers including “Come get some of this” and “you don’t know how we roll” and “I’ll show you what I got.” Pacers players and others yelled back.

The verbal sparring allegedly lasted for around 15 to 20 minutes until Morant entered the loading area, where he and his group loaded into two SUVs.

“The first vehicle turned toward the bus before exiting up a ramp and out of the arena’s loading area,” according to The Athletic. “The SUV moved toward the Pacers bus, turned, slowed, and that was when members of the Pacers traveling party noticed a red laser coming from the car and being trained on players, coaches and others.”

Grizzlies head coach Taylor Jenkins said on Sunday that the matter was “addressed internally” and that the team was “fully compliant” with the NBA’s investigation.