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Grizzlies' Ja Morant Fined $35K for Using Inappropriate Language Toward Official

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVDecember 3, 2022

MINNEAPOLIS, MN -  NOVEMBER 30: Ja Morant #12 of the Memphis Grizzlies dribbles the ball against the Minnesota Timberwolves on November 30, 2022 at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Jordan Johnson/NBAE via Getty Images)
Jordan Johnson/NBAE via Getty Images

Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant was fined $35,000 for directing inappropriate language toward an official and failing to leave the court in a timely manner after being ejected from Wednesday's game against the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Morant was ejected with 1:22 remaining in the game, just seconds after teammate Dillon Brooks sent to the locker room. After the game, the All-Star guard took to social media to cast some blame on the officiating crew for its inappropriate language.

Damichael Cole @DamichaelC

Ja Morant’s reaction to being ejected on Instagram: <a href="https://t.co/1ouQwBhwSj">pic.twitter.com/1ouQwBhwSj</a>

Morant has not gone into detail to explain what the official said to him. Earlier this month, Dallas Mavericks guard Spencer Dinwiddie accused official Tony Brothers of calling him a "b---h ass motherf--ker" during a game.

NBA insider Marc Stein reported the NBA forced Brothers to miss a game assignment as a result of the incident. The league never announced a punishment for Brothers because it was not a formal suspension.

While the NBA has taken a hard line on issuing punishment to players who disrespect officials, it would behoove the league to keep the same energy with referees. If Morant says an official directed profanity at him, it's only reasonable the NBA looks into the matter and then announces the result of the investigation publicly.

Allowing officials to make inappropriate comments to players unchecked will only further damage the sometimes-fraught relationship between the two parties.