Rockets Notes: Martin, Chriss, Porter, Outlook

Speaking to reporters on Monday, Kenyon Martin Jr. didn’t confirm an offseason report that stated he had talked to Rockets management about the possibility of being traded, writes Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. However, the third-year forward also didn’t exactly deny it.

“Like I keep saying, I’m just here to do my job,” Martin told reporters. “Everything else is between upper management and my agents. This summer, my goal was to get better and try to make the team better. I feel like I got better. So, going into the season, just try to win as many games as possible and keep moving forward.”

Martin is on a guaranteed minimum salary this season and has a non-guaranteed team option worth the minimum in 2023/24. He has been a regular rotation player for Houston over the last two seasons, averaging 9.0 PPG and 4.3 RPG on .524/.360/.667 shooting in 124 games (22.0 MPG), but the depth chart has gotten increasingly crowded at his position, raising questions about where he fits in the team’s long-term plans.

Here’s more on the Rockets:

  • According to Feigen (Twitter link), the only Rockets player dealing with an injury entering training camp is Marquese Chriss, who is still rehabbing after undergoing knee surgery in June.
  • Kevin Porter Jr. said on Monday that he’s in a “beautiful space” as he prepares to begin his fourth NBA season, and isn’t stressing about a potential rookie scale extension. “I stopped worrying about that last year and it’s been that,” Porter said, per Kelly Iko of The Athletic. “I still got that mindset. I got a team that represents me and they handle that part. For me, I just come in here and try to become the best player (I can be). It hasn’t been weighing on me because that’s my mindset.” Porter will become eligible for restricted free agency in 2023 if he doesn’t sign an extension with Houston by October 17.
  • After winning 17 games in 2020/21 and 20 games in ’21/22, the Rockets are still a ways off from contending, but center Alperen Sengun is bullish on the long-term potential of the team’s young core. “We’re just going to learn, and then we’re going to be (the) best in this league one day,” Sengun said on Monday, according to Feigen. “I really believe this.”
  • In his training camp preview for The Athletic, Iko poses three questions facing the Rockets, including how long Eric Gordon will remain on the roster and whether the club can improve its defense this season after ranking dead last in the NBA in 2021/22.
View Comments (13)