LeBron James, NBA world react to Ja Morant’s game-winner vs. Pelicans in return from suspension: ‘Ja’s back’

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Hollywood couldn’t have scripted it any better. With the clock waning, the crowd moody and the Grizzlies desperately needing a victory, Ja Morant — the beleaguered superstar whose brilliance was only just blotted by a 25-game suspension — had the ball in his hands.

With Pelicans All-World defender Herbert Jones attached at his hip, Morant veered left, then spun right. He deposited Jones with a timely shoulder shrug before flicking the gleaming orange orb towards the heavens.

Bottoms.

MORE: Grading Ja Morant’s legendary season debut vs. Pelicans

Morant’s buzzer-beating game-winner put the finishing touches on a 32-point, eight-assist, six-rebound showcase in his first game back in almost eight months. The fifth-year guard reminded the masses of his wondrous skillset, unleashing a dizzying fury of speed, athleticism and dexterity against New Orleans’ weary defenders.

And it had the basketball world talking. Morant started the conversation, rocking the mic like an emcee while talking about his return to form with TNT’s Stephanie Ready postgame.

“I’m a dawg,” Morant said. “I been putting work in, man. I ain’t play a game in eight months. Had a lot of time, you know, learn myself. Lot of hard days, you know, when I went through it. But, you know, basketball is my life, what I love, therapeutic for me, and I’m just excited to be back.”

He wasn’t the only one, though. Some of the biggest names in the sports and entertainment world were tuned in, hoping to see the heir apparent leave his imprint on one of the regular season’s biggest stages. They were not disappointed:

12 is back. That’s a scary sight for the rest of the league. 

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