Rockets forward Kenyon Martin Jr. recently spoke to team management about the possibility of a trade, according to Kelly Iko of The Athletic. Iko describes the conversation as a “candid” one and stresses that there’s no bad blood between Martin and the team. However, with Martin’s place in Houston’s long-term plans uncertain, he may prefer to be sent to a club that can give him a clearer path to rotation minutes.
A second-round pick in 2020, Martin has appeared in 124 games across two seasons with the Rockets, averaging 9.0 PPG and 4.3 RPG on .524/.360/.667 shooting in 22.0 minutes per contest.
Sources tell Iko that a number of teams – including some playoff contenders – have expressed interest in Martin in the past. He’s still just 21 years old, and his athleticism and possible untapped potential make him an intriguing target for potential suitors, Iko adds.
Here’s more on the Rockets:
- All signs continue to point to Paolo Banchero being the most likely pick for the Rockets at No. 3, per Iko. While Houston has received some inquiries on that pick, any talks have been exploratory at best, and the Rockets aren’t looking to trade down from No. 3, sources tell The Athletic.
- The Rockets’ other two first-round picks (No. 17 and No. 26) are viewed as more available, with No. 17 in particular drawing interest from some teams that don’t have a first-rounder, Iko writes. While either pick – or both – could be traded, Iko isn’t necessarily counting on anything happening until draft night, as teams see how the draft plays out and get a better idea of which players will still be on the board at those spots.
- Kevin Porter Jr. and Jae’Sean Tate will be eligible for extensions this offseason, and representatives for both players have already been in touch with the Rockets to inquire about beginning those discussions, according to Iko. The deadline for Porter’s rookie scale extension is the last day of the 2022 offseason, whereas Tate could sign a veteran extension during the 2022/23 season. Houston would like to retain both players beyond their current contracts, says Iko.
- Although Dennis Schröder is well-liked in Houston, he’s expected to end up with a new team for 2022/23, sources tell Iko. Schröder is an unrestricted free agent this summer.
- Lionel Hollins is among the veteran coaches who has emerged as a candidate to join Stephen Silas‘ staff as an assistant, Iko reports.