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Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant gifts LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels with signed jersey

Heisman Trophy winner was courtside for NBA All-Star’s return from 25-game suspension

NEW ORLEANS – Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant was about to head to the locker room after his triumphant return from suspension before deciding to stop for a Heisman Trophy winner and give him a monumental parting gift.

Morant scored 34 points and made the game-winning shot at the buzzer during a 115-113 victory over the host New Orleans Pelicans on Tuesday night. Morant exchanged pleasantries with LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels, signing his No. 12 Grizzlies jersey and giving it to the 2023 Heisman Trophy winner.

“He has been working for it. Everything he has been through in those dark times, he was able to come out here from the dark and show a lot,” Daniels told Andscape. Morant, a two-time NBA All-Star, was making his season debut after serving a 25-game suspension after displaying a gun on social media twice.

Daniels sat courtside with LSU wide receiver Malik Nabers, a Biletnikoff Award finalist and unanimous All-American. Daniels said that he had never met Morant, who offered some words of wisdom with the NFL up next.

“He told me, ‘Keep going, killer.’ Game respects game,” Daniels said.

Marc J. Spears is the senior NBA writer for Andscape. He used to be able to dunk on you, but he hasn’t been able to in years and his knees still hurt.