The Memphis Grizzlies don’t just have one but two players headed to the 2023 NBA All-Star Game, with Ja Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr. both being named as Western Conference reserves.
In a Twitter post, Ja Morant summed up his feelings for having the honor of having Jackson as a fellow All-Star: “so tough. happy for you franchise 🦄 many more to come 💪🏽@jarenjacksonjr”
With Ja Morant leading the offense and Jaren Jackson Jr. anchoring the defense, the Grizzlies have become one of the top NBA title contenders in the NBA this 2022-23 NBA season. Morant is pacing the Grizzlies with 27.3 points with 8.3 assists per game, while Jackson is averaging 6.7 rebounds and 3.3 blocks per outing. Morant also leads the Grizzlies in win shares and value replacement player.
Among Grizzlies players who have played multiple games this season, Jackson is No. 1 in defensive rating with 104 points per 100 possessions for Memphis when he’s on the floor. He is also tied with Steven Adams on the team with 2.1 defensive shares. Unlike Adams, though, Jackson’s switchability on defense makes the former Michigan State Spartans star such a valuable defensive weapon for the Grizzlies. Hunting for mismatches on defense is so much harder for opposing teams when Jackson is around.
Joining Morant and Jackson on the Western reserves group are Paul George of the Los Angeles Clippers, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander of the Oklahoma City Thunder,
Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers, Lauri Markkanen of the Utah Jazz, and Domantas Sabonis of the Sacramento Kings.
The 2023 NBA All-Star Game will be held on Feb. 19 in Salt Lake City.