KJ Martin clears the air over his departure from Houston Rockets

After a successful third NBA season, the Houston Rockets traded forward KJ Martin to the Los Angeles Clippers last offseason.

Martin was entering the fourth and final season of his initial NBA contract, and his role in Houston was unclear after the offseason additions of Dillon Brooks, Jeff Green, Amen Thompson, and Cam Whitmore (all played at least some forward minutes this season). There was also the matter of Jae’Sean Tate coming back from injury.

So, rather than risk losing Martin for no compensation after a season in which he might not play many minutes, anyway, Houston made the move early and got two second-round draft picks.

Some fans of the Rockets, and others around the league, wondered if there might’ve been more to the story. After all, Martin’s father — former NBA All-Star Kenyon Martin — was occasionally critical of Houston as an organization during its rebuilding years.

But this week, the younger Martin took to social media in an attempt to dispel that myth. Among his comments to X:

I’m tired of seeing y’all say that my dad forced me out of playing in Houston. He had nothing to do with it. He has his own opinion to say what he wants, like everyone else does. It was strictly NBA business on why I got traded.  Nothing more, nothing less!

I loved playing in Houston and wish I could’ve stayed. But things happen in the NBA, and you have to move on to different situations with other teams… and figure it out.

It is what it is. On to bigger and better things, God willing! So y’all can stop just saying anything.

As things turned out, Martin played considerably less this season with the Clippers and Philadelphia 76ers, which is where he was traded in November as part of the James Harden blockbuster.

Now, Martin enters unrestricted free agency this offseason having not played a consistent rotation role since his 2022-23 campaign in Houston (12.7 points (56.9% FG), 5.5 rebounds in 28.0 minutes).

Just 23 years old, Martin hasn’t lost any of his elite athleticism. But, it is an unusual time gap for a developing player, and time will tell as to what his market value is and whether any NBA team will offer him a definitive rotation spot for the 2024-25 campaign.

While the Rockets are an unlikely suitor given their frontcourt depth, it sounds as if he wants the door to at least be open to a potential return someday — even if 2024 is something of a stretch.

Story originally appeared on Rockets Wire