The Los Angeles Clippers unquestionably have a talented roster. But given how much time both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George have missed with injuries since going to Los Angeles, the talent isn’t always on the court. With an eye toward changing that and becoming deeper, the Clippers made a trade on Saturday.
Los Angeles has reportedly acquired K.J. Martin in a trade with the Houston Rockets. In exchange, the Clippers are sending two second-round picks to the Rockets.
The deal was reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
ESPN Sources: The Los Angeles Clippers are acquiring Houston Rockets forward K.J. Martin in a trade for two future second-round draft picks. pic.twitter.com/p5k1QG5stI
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 1, 2023
Martin, the son of 2000’s No. 1 overall pick, Kenyon Martin, was drafted by the Sacramento Kings in the second round of the 2020 draft and was traded to the Rockets days later.
In three seasons in Houston, Martin has been primarily used as a bench player. Through his first two NBA seasons, he started only 10 combined games but still averaged 22 minutes, 9 points, and 4.3 rebounds per game. He took a step up during the 2022-23 season.
Last year, Martin set career highs by playing in all 82 games and starting 49. He averaged 28 minutes per game along with 12.7 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists — all career highs, as well.
On top of that, Martin is only 22. And while he is set to become an unrestricted free agent after the upcoming season, the general consensus was that he’s easily worth a couple of second-round picks.
STEAL by the Clippers. https://t.co/BiUxZB2eiO
— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) July 1, 2023
Clippers buy low on K.J. Martin. Should find a nice role within their rotation. https://t.co/mu7qUqpkA6
— Evan Sidery (@esidery) July 1, 2023
Great crowd pleaser pickup for Clippers. Junior goes home. https://t.co/2aHmDZruYz
— Marc J. Spears (@MarcJSpears) July 1, 2023
Kenyon Martin Jr. for 2 future second rounders. Big get for LA.
Clippers add an athletic forward with a great motor. https://t.co/SC385h2ugp
— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) July 1, 2023
Clippers president Lawrence Frank coached Kenyon Martin and now trades for his son K.J. Martin. Martin brings high energy, physicality and athleticism to Clippers. https://t.co/hAEozWnMnR
— Ohm Youngmisuk (@NotoriousOHM) July 1, 2023
adding to the lineups they can throw out there, I like what Martin could bring to the Clippers. https://t.co/nbtuQOKZZ1
— Steve Jones Jr. (@stevejones20) July 1, 2023