About two months ago, Houston Rockets forward KJ Martin officially requested a trade from the team. His father had been discussing that possibility at the end of this past season, and that came to fruition this offseason.
According to a report by Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype and Yahoo, teams are interested in acquiring the 6’5″, 21-year-old forward. He said:
“Another Rockets player teams are monitoring on the trade market is KJ Martin, who has drawn interest following a reported trade request from Houston…”
It’s not a major report, but it is confirmation that the Rockets are likely talking to teams and have some potential suitors for Martin.
Houston now has a glut at the forward position after drafting Jabari Smith Jr. and Tari Eason. They also extended Jae’Sean Tate this offseason, leaving little potential opportunity for Martin.
The Rockets should be able to get a useful player back for Martin, who has shown potential through his immense athleticism during his two seasons in H-town. Martin has averaged 9 points, 4.3 rebounds, 1.2 assists, and 0.7 blocks in his Rockets career over 124 games and 10 starts. He’s had numerous thunderous dunks and some highlight reel blocks along with some good percentages, at 52.4 percent from the field and 36 percent from deep, although he’s not widely regarded as a consistent threat from deep despite the around league average three percentage.
Despite his concerns about playing time, Martin has averaged 22 minutes per contest in his NBA career so far, which is pretty good for a 52nd overall pick who is not even as old as many college seniors.
It remains to be seen what GM Rafael Stone ends up doing, but as we’ve seen with the Eric Gordon situation, Stone is typically patient in his trade talks, so I’d imagine he’ll be waiting for the right deal and not rushing to dump KJ without an acceptable return.