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NBA Top Players: Ja Morant

As it currently stands, there are too many incredibly skilled players within the NBA to single out every single name. Yet there’s something quite special about Grizzlies’ Point Guard, Ja Morant.

Ja Morant is an incredibly rare young basketball talent who is comfortable working with just about every element of basketball style. Yet there’s so much more to this player than his dominating presence on the court and his skillful way of combating opponents.

If you’re looking to place a bet on this upcoming season’s NBA Finals Odds or simply want to know more about one of the NBA’s shining stars, this article has got you covered.

Background

There aren’t that many players in the NBA who you can’t take your eyes off and command your complete attention. Ja Morant is an exception.

Temetrius Jamel Morant, known professionally as Ja Morant after his middle name, is a life-long basketball fan. Morant’s dad, Tee, played basketball in high school and college. He taught and trained his son from a young age to be the best possible player and by the time he was 6, Morant was already analyzing different offensive and defensive strategies.

As a dynamic athlete and playmaker, NBA stand-out Ja Morant is adept at implementing an impactful offensive strategy for himself and all of his teammates. He is also renowned for his aggressive playing style to both attack and finishes at the rim to a consistently high level.

College Experience

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Morant’s recruitment to Murray State University was a complete accident. The recruiter found Morant playing three-on-three in an open gym and extended the invitation. At this time, the recruiter was not there to watch Morant but was sent in to recruit his teammates at the time.

Morant played two years of college basketball at Murray State between 2017 and 2019, giving the team their first NCAA win since 2012.  He excelled in the program and led the team to back-to-back tournament berths – which is something that hadn’t happened in a very long time.

He started all 32 games as a freshman for the Murray State Racers, averaging 12.7 points, 6.3 assists, and 6.5 rebounds per game in the 2017-2018 season. As a sophomore, Morant’s overall draft stock increased as he averaged 10 APG, 5.7 RPG, and 24.5 ppg. He was also unanimously named to the All-American First Team this year.

In his last year at Murray State, Morant averaged 24.5 points and 10 assists per game. As the nation’s top point guard, he became the first ever player to average 20 points and 10 assists per game since the NCAA began to track assists in the 1983-84 season.

NBA Draft

The Memphis Grizzlies took a logical step toward a new and exciting era when they selected Ja Morant, a then up-and-coming point guard, with the second overall pick during the 2019 NBA draft. Since he officially signed with the team, Morant has emerged (and proved himself to be) a true All-Star talent in each season.

Morant was also the first member of the 2019 Draft class to secure a show deal with Nike.

Career Stats

He was voted 2020 Rookie of the Year, receiving 99 out of 100 first-place votes. He finished this year averaging 3.9 rebounds, 17.8 points, and 7.3 assists per game which were impressive figures for someone finding their feet.

His 2020-21 season broke franchise records after playing five games and achieving at least 30 points and 10 assists.

Ja Morant has played three professional seasons for the Grizzlies. He’s averaged 21.2 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 7.1 assists so far. He has also scored three career triple-doubles with the Grizzlies, which is the second-highest amount achieved in franchise history.

If that wasn’t enough, he is also the first ever Grizzlies player to have won Most Improved Player and Rookie of the Year.

Strengths

Ja Morant has a brilliant and highly dynamic passing ability, even for a point guard. He shows great imagination to make such creative passes and can lead his team to make an easy score with his vision.

Another key strength is his competitiveness. A heightened intensity and speed on the court make him a lethal addition to any game as he constantly pushes the pace and appears to relish drawing the defense to him. Despite his thinner frame, he has the right kind of size and uncanny strength to easily distinguishes him from his competitors.

Weaknesses

Morant has so much athletic prowess that he can be forgiven for playing quite literally like there is no tomorrow.

Morant appears to play every possession like it’s his last which often results in him trying out new strategies and techniques that other players may not have considered. While this has led to some of Morant’s career highlights, it has also produced turnovers. Essentially, he often tries to do too much in a single game. This could end up hurting his team.

As impressive a figure as Morant cuts on the court, he can often get overly aggressive with passes in too-tight spaces. But for a player with his abilities, learning via mistakes is simply a natural progression.

Summary

Ja Morant has drive, ambition, and talent in buckets. With all things considered, the young basketball star has already singled himself out as one of the NBA’s top players today.

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