Could URI’s Martin Actually Make the Celtics Roster?

Wednesday, July 18, 2018


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Hassan Martin made Celts take notice

With his recent tear in the NBA Summer League, ex-URI basketball star Hassan Martin has begun to draw a lot of attention. This begs the question: could Martin actually make the Boston Celtics Roster?

On Sunday Martin had his best showing yet, with 16 points, nine rebounds and a team-high 31 minutes. However, the Celtics fell 95-80 to Portland in the quarterfinals, effectively ending their stay in Las Vegas. In his short stint with the Celtics this summer, Martin showed why he was one of the best in college and why he should be on an NBA roster.

Despite playing just five minutes in the C’s first matchup, the 22-year-old’s hustle and athleticism stood out and led to a continued increase in playing time. Martin stepped up to the challenge and played better with each game, eventually finishing the six-game season second on the team in field goal percentage with 55.6% while shooting 90.9% from the free throw line. He was tied for first on the team with 6.0 rebounds per game and averaged 10.0 points per game and 18.7 minutes per game over that span.

So with his performance, it’s time we evaluate Martin’s chances of making Boston’s 15-man roster. The Celtics have one of the most stacked rosters in the league, with stars Kyrie Irving, Gordon Hayward and Jayson Tatum to name a few. The 6’7” forward would instead be competing against players such as Jabari Bird, Semi Ojeleye, and Guerschon Yabusele for the last few spots. Unfortunately for Martin, those three players all were with the Celtics last season and know the system.

Because of injuries in his final year at URI, Martin didn’t play the full NCAA season and went undrafted. After playing in the 2017 Summer League with the Orlando Magic, he spent the past year in Japan with the Ryukyu Golden Kings. There he excelled, averaging 15.3 points and 8.2 rebounds while shooting 62.3 percent from the field.

Despite the difficulty of making the Celtics roster, it does seem likely that Martin will be able to find a home on at least some NBA roster. Keith Smith, a contributor for CelticsBlog and a host of the NBA Front Office Show, recently tweeted: “Sources: Hassan Martin, who is playing for the Summer Celtics, is likely to get at least a couple of offers for a Two-way contract. If not a Two-way contract, then a Summer Contract to attend training camp, with eyes on being an NBAGL Affiliate Player for the team that signs him.”

Whatever happens with Martin, his attitude and perseverance will keep leading him to success. He told NBC Sports Boston on the possibility of playing for the Celtics this year, “I approach that the same way I approach the game now; stay ready. Because you never know when your opportunity is coming. All I can do is stay ready, just like I’ve done so far in summer league; just staying ready.”


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