Ja Morant, Self-Defense, Lawsuit

Ja Morant Can Argue Self-Defense In Lawsuit Filed Against Him

A judge ruled against Joshua Holloway who is suing Ja Morant alleging assault, reckless endangerment, and infliction of emotional distress for a fight during a pickup basketball game in 2022.

A lawsuit was filed in September 2022 by a then-17-year-old teenager who accused Memphis Grizzlies’ Ja Morant of hitting him while the two engaged in a pickup basketball game at Morant’s parents’ house earlier that summer. A judge has ruled that Morant acted in self-defense when he struck the teenager that day.

Shelby County Court Circuit Judge Carol Chumney ruled against Joshua Holloway, who brought the lawsuit against Morant after the two had an altercation at the Eads, Tennessee, home on July 26, 2022. She stated that the NBA player “enjoys a presumption of civil immunity” when she cited Tennessee law since the issue of self-defense was raised by Morant’s attorney. Morant’s attorney said he struck Holloway first “to protect” himself against the teenager.

In her judgment, she wrote that “a provocateur generally cannot invoke self-defense; if you start a fight, then you should be ready to finish it” under Tennessee law. She said Holloway wanted to fight when everyone else wanted to play basketball.

The incident occurred at Morant’s home during a pickup basketball game. The Memphis player stated that Holloway was frustrated that he had already lost a couple of games, and he allegedly threw an aggressive one-handed pass at him when Morant was checking the basketball. He said the ball hit the left side of his face.

While testifying on the witness stand in December 2023, Morant said that after throwing the ball at him, he asked the teenager, “What you on?” Instead of answering, Holloway pulled up his shorts, which he took as an aggressive fighting stance.