J.J. Redick is sticking to his guns on the Ja Morant conversation.
With many sports personalities offering their thoughts and opinions of the latest Ja Morant situation, former NBA star and current ESPN analyst Redick joined the fray on Wednesday. Redick gave ESPN
Redick made it clear that he agrees with some form of discipline surrounding Morant, but also believes that there's something of a witch hunt surrounding the 23-year-old.
MORE: Ja Morant suspension updates — Latest news, updates on potential NBA ban
On ESPN's "First Take" on Wednesday, Redick offered something of an impassioned defense of Morant while also slamming politicians and the United States' "gun culture" for enabling a society where guns are OK.
JJ Redick asks “Why are we trying to lay down the hammer on a 23-year-old who didn’t break a law?” when there’s no consequence for Greg Abbott telling people to buy more guns pic.twitter.com/dUc8imA9dj— Awful Announcing (@awfulannouncing) May 17, 2023
Redick's rant in full:
Again, we can go into the backstory of the teenager, Ja is claiming self-defense, that the teenager threw the ball in his face. We can go into the incident in the mall, when he yelled at a security guard. We can go into the incident with the Indiana Pacers traveling party. As far as we know, all of these things have been investigated and no law has been broken. I'm not condoning the behavior. I'm not saying there should be no punishment. There should be — there should be consequences. You are the face of the league. You are representing the NBA. You are a role model to young kids. All of that — I don't think half a season is the right answer. …
You talk about consequences. Look — in our country right now, gun culture is pervasive. It's pervasive. We've got mass shooting after mass shooting and nobody's doing a damn thing about it. So I get why we're so sensitive to this right now. But there's no consequence for (Texas governor) Greg Abbott, telling his constituents that they should go buy more guns, and then we have mass shooting after mass shooting in Texas.
There's no consequence for an elected Tennessee official to send out a Christmas card, holding AR-15s with his young family, and then there's a shooting in his very district. There's no consequences to that. So why are we trying to lay down the hammer on a 23-year-old? Who didn't break a law? Explain that to me.
The NBA is currently investigating Morant and the video. The expectation is that Morant will probably be handed a "significant" suspension for the 2023-24 NBA season, but no word has been made official from league offices.
Morant served an eight-game suspension for a similar gun-related situation earlier in the year, when he was spotted in a Denver-area night club, wielding a firearm. Commissioner Adam Silver said he felt Morant was remorseful for his actions, and was "shocked" when he saw the new video over the weekend.
Morant offered a statement on May 16, giving something of an apology for his actions.