Throughout his three seasons in the NBA, Ja Morant has proven himself to be far from lacking in self-belief. The former Rookie of the Year and All-NBA Second Team selection has jawed at fans and players of opposing teams while acknowledging his own ability. However, the Memphis Grizzlies superstar guard recently gave cause for pause with the comments he made regarding the one and only Michael Jordan.
During an interview with Taylor Rooks of Bleacher Report, Ja spoke on his desire to have played during the late ’80s and the ’90s, the period in which Jordan dominated, becoming the league’s best player and a 6-time NBA champion. Morant declared he would’ve been up for the challenge of facing off against the legend during his prime if given the opportunity.
“I wish I played in his generation,” Morant said of MJ, before adding that he feels he would’ve given the Hall of Famer problems of his own on the defensive side of the game. “I would’ve cooked him, too. Nobody got more confidence than 12.”
“I’m never going to say nobody going to beat me one-on-one in anything,” Morant continued in confidence. “I don’t care what it is, what sport it is. Soccer. Who’s the best player in soccer? Come on, we can play.”
Ja’s brash comments led some to question his sanity given Jordan’s defensive prowess and competitive nature being major obstacles for Morant in the hypothetical matchup. However, others weren’t as dismissive, comparing his size and explosive quickness with that of Allen Iverson, who famously crossed up MJ during Iverson’s rookie season as a Philadelphia 76er. It’s a moment that remains crystallized in the minds of basketball fans and pundits to this day.