Utah Jazz: Mom of Memphis star adamantly declines owner’s invite

Utah Jazz (Russell Isabella-USA TODAY Sports)
Utah Jazz (Russell Isabella-USA TODAY Sports) /

It’s no wonder one Memphis bunch is steering clear of Utah Jazz home games.

Basically, it seems everyone but the three offenders has publicly apologized on behalf of the Utah Jazz franchise. Head coach Quin Snyder. Two-time All-Star Donovan Mitchell. New minority owner Dwyane Wade. Mountains of fans on social media. You name it.

What they apologized for, of course, were the reported racist and sexually explicit comments that the parents of Memphis Grizzlies star Ja Morant recently had to endure while watching their son’s inspired, incredible play inside Vivint Arena.

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The vulgar remarks — not worth repeating here — came during the Jazz’s series-tying Game 2 home win over the Grizzlies on May 26.

There’s no doubt that this despicable incident has, understandably, further perpetuated a stereotype. And it’s no doubt an ugly label that most Utahns wish for the fanbase to collectively rise above as soon as possible.

The Utah Jazz’s attempted show of kindness

With the No. 1 seed Jazz holding a 3-1 lead over the No. 8 seed Grizzlies as the series returns to Utah for Game 5 at 7:30 p.m. MT Wednesday, Malika Andrews and Tim MacMahon of ESPN.com reported on an offered gift this week from Ryan Smith.

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Evidently, the Jazz’s 44-year-old majority owner arranged courtside seats, hotel accommodations, and car service for Ja Morant’s family and friends. Yet according to Morant’s father, Tee, his wife, Jamie, isn’t comfortable returning to the arena at this point:

“It was a nice gesture from the Jazz. It was unfortunate. It was just a few fans — most of them were great and cheering right alongside us…She said her anxiety couldn’t take it.”

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Roger that. Can’t blame her one bit.