Rockets To Trade Kenyon Martin Jr. To Clippers

The Clippers have agreed to trade for Rockets forward Kenyon Martin Jr., according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link), who reports that Houston will receive two second-round picks in the deal.

The two second-rounders will be the Clippers’ own 2026 pick and the Grizzlies’ 2027 pick, tweets Andrew Greif of The Los Angeles Times.

The Clippers have a $2,134,843 trade exception they can use to absorb Martin’s salary.

Martin spent three years in Houston after being acquired from the Kings, who selected him with the 52nd pick in the 2020 draft. He served as a valuable bench player for most of his time with the rebuilding Rockets, but became a full-time starter by the end of last season. He posted career highs with 12.7 points and 5.5 rebounds while shooting 56.9% from the field.

Martin is also an electrifying leaper who frequently posted highlight-worthy slams. He participated in this year’s Slam Dunk Contest, but didn’t get past the preliminary round.

The 22-year-old forward will get his first experience on a contender in L.A. He’ll provide additional depth behind Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, who both have a long history of battling injuries.

On Thursday, the Rockets picked up Martin’s $1.93MM option for 2023/24, so he’s set to be unrestricted free agent next summer. He will become eligible to sign a four-year extension worth up to $75MM six months after the trade is finalized.

ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk points out that Clippers president Lawrence Frank has a connection to Martin after being his father’s coach with the Nets (Twitter link).
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