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Ja Morant’s lawyers have filed a motion to dismiss the civil lawsuit he finds himself in the middle of with the teenager he allegedly punched last summer during a pickup game. Morant allegedly brandished a gun at the then-17-year-old Josh Holloway after allegedly hitting him as well.
Morant’s legal team is claiming that the Memphis Grizzlies’ star was acting in self-defense, which, in turn, is admitting that Morant did strike the minor.
“Morant acted in self-defense when [Holloway] intentionally struck him in the face with a basketball at Mr. Morant’s family home last July,” the motion to dismiss read. “He therefore enjoys civil immunity under the [Self-Defense Immunity] Statute.”
Tee Morant, Ja’s father, was present during the altercation. He is on record explaining that he was encouraging Holloway to play aggressively with his son. Tee Morant also testified that he heard the teenager threaten to shoot at Morant’s house, which is where the pickup game took place.
The altercation allegedly started after a hard-checked ball from Holloway slipped through Morant’s hands before striking him in the face.
Ja Morant’s Checked Ball Explained
Mike Miller, the former NBA player turned agent, took part in a 90-minute deposition explaining what a check ball actually is.
“In a normal check ball, it’s just to make sure everyone is ready,” Miller said during the deposition. “So when you check the ball, me and you are playing one-on-one. I check the ball to you, before you hand it back to me (and) everyone is ready to play.”
Holloway first filed a lawsuit against Morant in September before Morant filed a countersuit of his own. The countersuit is alleging that the teenager was the aggressor, claiming self-defense at that time as well.
Now, given the other serious off-court issues Morant is facing, it’s clear his legal team thinks it would be best to get rid of the civil suit and focus more on the 25-game suspension he’s facing and what his future looks like from that point forward.
The motion to dismiss, filed on June 26, requires a hearing within 40 days of filing. It places a pause on all other aspects of the civil case.