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Analyst Unveils How “Public Enemy” Ja Morant Can Turn the Boos Into Cheers and Salvage His NBA Career

Published 12/20/2023, 11:30 AM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

Ja Morant returned spectacularly to the court and, through a jaw-dropping 34-point season debut for the Memphis Grizzlies, gave his critics the super splat they deserved. Not only did his game-winning floater as time expired against the New Orleans Pelicans clinch the win, it could also indicate that a turnaround has begun for this young point guard.

After a 25-game suspension due to social media controversies and with his team on the verge of collapse, Morant had an emotional welcome back. And many wonder if he will be able to turn the negative opinions surrounding him.

From public enemy to MVP contender

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Chris Broussard and Rob Parker of Fox Sports Radio echoed the sentiments of many fans, discussing Morant’s uphill battle to rehabilitate his image. In the ODD Couple Radio Parker said, “I’m going to say he would need to win an MVP to get to the NBA finals, like something of that magnitude for people to say, Man, what a recovery! Look at what he did to get back, because I think he’s the enemy or he’s the public enemy for a lot of opposing fans.”

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It appears that only an MVP-like performance on the court, or perhaps a great spectacle, would change public opinion about Morant. They also pointed out that winning can turn skepticism into faith and silence doubters. Conversely, although Morant’s comeback celebrated his indisputable talent, it also allowed a crack in the door for redemption.

As long as the Grizzlies can turn things around, fans may be forgiving. Whether or not this transition in Morant’s career can actually take place depends on whether he can guide his team to success, changing the story about him.

Morant’s redemption journey

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In a post-game interview, Morant spoke candidly about the challenges he faced during his suspension and the hard work invested in his comeback. After eight months away from playing, Morant took the time to look inward and develop a stronger sense of self. He pointed out that basketball is not just a game for him; in fact, it’s something that relieves stress—a passion that drives his ambition.

The Grizzlies, in Morant’s absence, struggled significantly, managing a meager 6-19 record. However, the tides turned with Morant’s return, breaking a five-game losing streak for the team. The Grizzlies’ next test is a showdown with the Indiana Pacers, which has become an important turning point not only for Morant but for the entire team. If they can take advantage of it and maintain this positive energy, they may be able to rewrite yet another page in their season’s script.

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Watch This Story – Mind-blowing moments that prove why Ja Morant deserves to be an All-Star

What did you think of Morant’s performance in his comeback game? Let us know in the comments.

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Written by:

Abhinav Tomar

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Edited by:

Ruth John