The Grizzlies are already on the verge of being eliminated from the NBA Finals and are trailing the Warriors 3-1 in the semifinals of the Best-of-7 Western Conference. They got more bad news on Tuesday.
Yes Morant is questionable for the rest of the playoffs, the team announced, after an MRI scan of the 22-year-old superstar’s right knee revealed a bone bruise.
Morant sustained the injury when he threw himself after a loose ball midway through the fourth quarter of Game 3 against the Warriors, and his knee was grabbed by Golden States Jordan Poole. He left the game and did not return.
The battle is a significant one for the second-seeded Grizzlies, who will now be without their top scorer and one of the NBA’s best playmakers the rest of the way.
Morant, who on average had a little over 27 points per. match in this year’s playoffs – and 38.3 points, 8.3 assists and 6.7 rebounds against the Warriors in the second round series – has not played since he suffered the injury. That included Monday night as the Golden State rallied to edge Memphis, 101-98, in San Francisco.
After the Game 3 injury, Morant tweeted that Poole “broke the code,” though he quickly deleted it. The jab was a reference to Warriors coach Steve Kerr, who had delivered the same line about the Grizzlies ‘Dillon Brooks after Brooks was hit with a blatant error on Warriors’ Gary Payton II in Game 2.
Payton II suffered a broken elbow during the game and Brooks was suspended in Game 3.
As for Morant, it’s the second time in recent weeks that he’s missed time. In March, he sat out for nine games, also due to a right knee injury. Prior to the Golden State series, Morant also said he was not 100 percent.
According to the team, Morant is expected to fully recover. Game 5 in the series is Wednesday at. 21:30 ET.