Ja Morant is widely regarded as the second-best player available in the 2019 NBA Draft and it appears the Memphis Grizzlies agree. The Grizzlies own the second pick in this year’s draft and they’re reportedly telling “interested parties” they intend to select Morant when they are on the clock.
The Grizzlies were awarded the second pick in Tuesday night’s draft lottery, moving all the way up from eighth. While they missed out on a chance to land Zion Williamson with the first pick, Morant isn’t a bad consolation prize.
ESPN’s Jonathan Givony claims the Grizzlies have made their intention to select Morant clear at the NBA draft combine in Chicago. The move would make sense, given Mike Conley’s age and declining productivity. Morant would be able to step in and become the team’s primary ball-handler immediately.
Morant exploded onto the scene as a sophomore during the 2018-19 season. He averaged 24.5 points, 10.0 assists, 5.7 rebounds and 1.8 steals in 36.6 minutes per game. He also hit 36.3 percent from 3-point range, shot 81.3 percent from the free throw line and made 49.9 percent of his field goals. The 6’3″ combo guard also led Murray State to a win over Marquette in the first round of the 2019 NCAA Tournament.
This pick makes sense and it’s not surprising to see Memphis already make its intentions clear.