Charlotte Hornets general manager Mitch Kupchak sees University of Nevada senior Cody Martin as a “ball-handling guard” after the Hornets selected him in the second round with the 36th overall pick during Thursday’s NBA draft.
“We feel he’s a ball-handling guard,” Kupchak said. Kupchak went on to say the Hornets want to “put the ball in his hands, let him bring it up, let him make plays.”
In an interview with FOX Sports Carolinas, the 6-7 Martin said he’s a versatile player who can play different positions. Both Kupchak and Martin agreed, though, he needs to work on his shooting, to become a more consistent shooter and to increase his shooting range.
“He’s clever,” said Kupchak about Martin. “He knows how to play the game. He’ll be fun to play with.”
“I’m ready to get to it,” Martin told FOX Sports Carolinas. “I think I’m going to get better over time.” One possibility for Martin is to start out with the NBA G-League’s Greesboro Swarm to learn the Hornets system.
“The biggest thing I bring to the table is just competing,” said Martin, who added defense is one of his strengths. “Playing hard and doing the things on a consistent basis.”
Martin returns to his home state as he’s from Mocksville, N.C. Martin is the first Wolf Pack player selected in the NBA Draft since Luke Babbitt and Armon Johnson were taken in the 2010 NBA Draft. Babbitt was the 16th pick of the first round by the Minnesota Timberwolves and Johnson was the 34th overall selection by the Portland Trail Blazers.
Martin played two seasons for the Pack and helped the team capture back-to-back Mountain West regular season titles. Nevada advanced to the NCAA Tournament each season and reached the Sweet 16 in 2018. The Wolf Pack won 29 games in each of his seasons which tied the school record for wins in a season and the 58 wins in two years is the best two-year span in school history.
In two seasons he played in 70 games and made 68 starts. He averaged 13.1 points, 5.4 rebounds and 4.8 assists per game in his career. In his first season at Nevada he scored 14 points, grabbed 6.3 rebounds and dished out 4.7 assists per game. As a senior he averaged 12.1 points, 4.5 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game.
His junior year he was selected as the MW Defensive Player of the Year, to the MW Defensive team, MW academic team and to the MW second team by the coaches and media. His senior year he was a repeat selection on the MW defensive team.
Caroline signs with Lakers
Nevada Wolf Pack alum Jordan Caroline has signed an undrafted free-agent deal with the Los Angeles Lakers, according to multiple reports.
Caroline was a three-time all-conference player for the Wolf Pack after transferring from Southern Illinois. He averaged 16.6 points, 9.1 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game at Nevada, making 46.3 percent from the field and 34.5 percent of his threes.
As a senior, the 6-7 Caroline averaged 17 points, 9.6 rebounds and 1.9 assists while making 45.2 percent from the field, including 36.8 percent from three.