J.R. Smith in disbelief after learning of Ja Morant’s latest gun controversy

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Former Cleveland Cavaliers champion J.R. Smith is in a state of disbelief after Ja Morant’s latest controversy.

The Memphis Grizzlies cornerstone is making headlines once again after appearing to hold a gun during an Instagram Live. The franchise was quick to act on the indiscretion by suspending him from all activities with the team.

What happens now to the young star is up in the air, as his apparent immaturity and lack of accountability certainly don’t put his team and the league in a good light.

Some folks might defend Morant and his right to have firearms depending on his location. However, Smith doesn’t seem interested in that argument.

The 23-year-old’s circle might want to remind him that as an NBA player, he has a huge responsibility to his franchise and fans, particularly the younger ones.

Morant talked after the Grizzlies’ 2022-23 season ended about being disciplined and making better decisions as a leader. But his latest gun incident might have shown that he is nowhere near ready to take the next step in his career.

It may be key for Morant to seek guidance from former or current players who have had similar experiences. Smith is among them, as the two-time NBA champion had his fair share of controversies on and off the court.

For instance, the former first-round pick had a few run-ins with law enforcement in the 2000s. He had to spend more than three weeks in jail after running a stop sign in 2007, which tragically caused a deadly accident. He also got suspended by the Denver Nuggets in 2007 following a reported altercation outside a Denver nightclub.

Smith had some other controversies during his time in the NBA but eventually managed to turn his career around.

He played an integral role in Cleveland’s title run in 2016, scoring in double digits in the last five games of the Cavs’ Finals series against the Golden State Warriors. The team went 4-1 during that stretch to come back from 2-0 and 3-1 deficits.

Furthermore, the retired sharpshooter secured his second ring as a member of the 2019-20 Los Angeles Lakers squad that won it all in the NBA bubble.

Only time will tell if Morant can also recover from his own troubles.

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Orel is a freelance writer who is passionate about the NBA. He has followed the league since the late '90s and found increased interest in it in 2003 – when an 18-year-old prodigy from Akron, Ohio took the league by storm.