Since Ja Morant returned to action for the Memphis Grizzlies back on March 22 after a nine-game suspension/personal hiatus, the club has lost just twice. And while the team has certainly benefited from his reinstatement, it's evident, even to the 23-year-old, that he has not been the lone go-to option like he was before stepping away.
Following the Grizzlies' recent win over the Los Angeles Clippers, Morant made the surprising admission he is noticing that he's no longer the far-and-away focal point of Taylor Jenkins' rotation. While such a role shift may be deemed unacceptable for some superstars, the point guard stated during his post-game media session that he's focusing on getting acclimated to the schematic adjustment, per Damichael Cole of commercialappeal.com.
“For me, it's getting used to pretty much not being the main option,” Ja Morant said. “Just finding my spots. We got Jaren and Des who have took over that role for us. For me, just getting them the ball and then when I get my chance, just take it.”
While Morant was away from the team, both Jaren Jackson Jr. and Desmond Bane went on to step up in big ways for the Grizzlies. The former found himself posting stellar per-game averages of 22.7 points, 6.6 rebounds, and 1.9 blocks on 51.1% shooting from the floor while the latter sported 20.1 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 5.1 assists on 46.7% shooting.
During this period with Jackson and Bane as top dogs, Memphis went 6-3.
With their proven capability of being the main options for the team, Ja Morant has seemingly put it upon himself to adjust to this new rotational hierarchy.
Since returning to the floor, the fourth-year pro is averaging 22.5 points and 7.3 assists on 43% shooting from the field.