The Sydney Kings have found Andrew Bogut‘s replacement – former first-round NBA draft pick Jarell Martin.
The Kings confirmed Martin’s signature on Wednesday, with the 26-year-old expected to be the team’s starting centre in place of Bogut.
The athletic 208cm big joins Sydney following four years experience with the Memphis Grizzlies and Orlando Magic.
He most recently played for the Rio Grande Valley Vipers in the NBA G-League and with the Schenzhen Leopards of the CBA.
Martin’s relationship with Kings CEO Chris Pongrass from the pair’s time at Memphis played a major role in his recruitment.
Pongrass was the director of basketball operations with the Grizzlies prior to joining Sydney last season.
“I couldn’t be happier to reunite with Jarell and welcome him to Sydney,” Pongrass said.
“He is exactly the type of player we were looking for to round out our roster.
“It is rare to find a 6 foot 10 versatile big who can handle the ball, push in transition and be a strong presence inside – couple that with his three-point range, I am confident he will be a force in this league.
“We are definitely going to benefit from Jarell’s competitiveness and desire to win – Kings fans should be excited for what is in store.”
Jarell Martin is set to excite Sydney Kings fans. Picture: Sarah Stier/Getty ImagesSource:Supplied
In high school, Martin was a McDonald’s All-American and was named Louisiana’s Mr Basketball in 2013.
He attended LSU for college, averaged 13.7 points and 6.9 rebounds per game, and was a teammate of Australia’s Ben Simmons.
Following his sophomore year at LSU, Martin declared for the 2015 NBA Draft and was selected with the 25th overall pick by the Grizzlies where he spent three seasons.
Martin averaged 7.7 points and 4.4 rebounds per game while shooting 44.6 per cent from the field during the 2017-18 season.
Having seen the pathway paved by those from the Sydney Kings into the NBA, Martin is looking forward to continuing to build on his career in Sydney this season.
“I’m very excited to be joining the Kings and can’t wait to get going” Martin said.
“I’ve heard so many great things about Australia, how good the NBL league is, and how much the Sydney fans really embrace the players. I’m looking forward to the season ahead and can’t wait to get out on court.”
Martin rounds out the final piece of the Kings’ roster for the 2020-21 NBL season.
He joins Casper Ware Jr, Brad Newley, Xavier Cooks, Shaun Bruce, Craig Moller, Angus Glover, Dejan Vasiljevic, Daniel Kickert, Jordan Hunter and Didi Louzada as contracted players.
Martin will travel to Sydney from the United States this month.
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