Memphis, Tennessee. “After a young Memphis Grizzlies fan had her prized basketball stolen, Ja Morant jumped in to relieve her pain.
Ellie Hughes, an 11-year-old Grizzlies fan, was trying to get Morant’s attention for an autograph at Monday’s game against San Antonio when two people stole her special ball.
Hughes of Forrest City, Arkansas, has been collecting player signatures on the ball for the past six years.
After becoming aware of her plight through social media, Morant contacted her family, invited her to a rematch against the Spurs on Wednesday night, and then gave her his worn jersey and Ja 1 Nike sneakers, which had not yet been released to the public.
“That’s something I really love to do,” Morant said of his warm gesture. “You touch someone’s heart like that. Big Grizzlies fan for years. These are the moments that mean the most to them. Something they will never forget.”
Morant put on a show too, scoring 38 points as the Grizzlies beat San Antonio 135–129 for their eighth straight win.
The star guard, who missed the previous two games with right hip pain, was 14 of 25 from the field, including 3 of 5 on three points. He also had a right hand dunk over Spurs center Jakob Poeltl with 3:35 left to help Memphis maintain the lead.
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