Pacers make ‘red laser’ claim after Ja Morant friends incident
The NBA has launched an investigation following a postgame incident last month involving members of the Pacers team and associates of Grizzlies star Ja Morant, in which the latter party was accused of to drive a red laser on the Indiana club.
Shortly after the Grizzlies defeated the Pacers in a heated contest on Jan. 29, some members of Morant’s inner circle “aggressively clashed” with those traveling with the Pacers, The Athletic reported Sunday. He notes that the apparent incident took place near the Indiana team bus that was in the loading area of the FedExForum in Memphis. Davonte Pack, a friend of Morant who “swore profanities at several Pacers players” during the game, allegedly shouted remarks during the visiting club’s postgame along with others, according to the report.
Upon entering the loading area, Morant joined Pack and another individual in an SUV that allegedly made its way to the Pacers bus, “spun, slowed down”, with people associated with the Pacers believing they saw “a red laser coming from the car. “
“We felt we were in grave danger,” one person told The Athletic of the incident.
Although two Pacers group associates did not see who was behind the apparent laser, they also do not know if the pointer was attached to a gun.
In a statement to The Athletic, NBA spokesman Mike Bass said the league has looked into the Pacers’ allegations.
“NBA and league security investigators conducted an investigation by interviewing numerous eyewitnesses and reviewing CCTV following allegations made by the Indiana Pacers organization regarding a post-game incident on January 29. Although we have proven that a post-game situation occurred that was confrontational, based on interviews and other evidence collected, we could not corroborate that an individual threatened to ‘other people with a weapon,’ the statement said.
“Some people involved in the post-game situation and related matter during the game that night were subsequently banned from attending games in the arena. Should additional information become available regarding the post-match situation, the league office will conduct a further review,” the statement concluded.
A Grizzlies representative told The Athletic the club “has fully complied with the league’s investigation and respects its findings.”