MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Memphis Grizzlies superstar Ja Morant has entered a counseling program in Florida and there is no timetable for his return, according to reports from ESPN.
Morant has been away from the team for about 10 days now, since a social media post surfaced showing him holding a handgun inside of a nightclub.
Brandy Flynn, a mental health specialist who works with athletes and those who work in the sports world, says she hopes Morant’s example could help others facing personal issues.
“It does take away some of the stigma, especially in the Black community and with men,” Flynn said. “Those are the two major groups that really don’t go to therapy, so for him to be a Black man, to go to therapy, that would truly help to normalize going to therapy.”
Flynn says she helps athletes work to find balance in their lives.
“It’s their personal lives, but it’s either affecting their sport or they recognize, ‘Hey, I need help, regardless of what I do in a uniform, I need help for me,'” she said.
It’s unclear what kind of counseling Morant is receiving, but Flynn hopes he talks to a therapist, who digs into the roots of issues.
“We know Ja Morant, the Grizzlies player, but we should focus on Temetrius Morant, the actual person, to get the help that he needs so he can be a better person, which will also roll over to him to be a better player,” she said.
Morant was cleared by police in Colorado of any wrongdoing after the social media post with the gun.
“It is a private issue, whatever he’s dealing with, it’s not our business what he’s dealing with,” Flynn said. “But I think it’s important to know that he’s going because he’s normalizing getting therapy. So if your favorite athlete is getting therapy, then, ‘Hey if he can do it, well let me try.'”