Kenyon Martin Jr. Declares for 2020 NBA Draft, Will Skip College

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistMarch 25, 2020

CHATSWORTH, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 04: Kenyon Martin Jr. #4 of Sierra Canyon shoots a free throw in a game against Mayfair on January 04, 2019 in Chatsworth, California. (Photo by Cassy Athena/Getty Images)
Cassy Athena/Getty Images

Kenyon Martin Jr., the son of former NBA player Kenyon Martin Sr., is declaring for the 2020 NBA draft, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn

IMG Academy forward Kenyon Martin Jr., has declared for the 2020 NBA Draft, his father Kenyon Martin Sr., tells ESPN. Martin Jr., is eligible for draft, because he did the post-graduate year at IMG after graduating from Sierra Canyon H.S. in SoCal.

Martin's plan was always to skip college. In July, he told Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated that he consulted both R.J. Hampton and LaMelo Ball before making the decision:

"I talked to R.J. and LaMelo both. [LaMelo] played for a year overseas [in Lithuania], and now he is going back again. I asked him what he thought about it. Now he is going out there on his own; his brother [LiAngelo] won't be there. I talked to both to ask them what they were thinking, and we all kind of have the same mindset in what we want to accomplish."

Martin had originally planned to play at Vanderbilt under former NBA player Jerry Stackhouse, but instead choose to enroll at IMG Academy, where he averaged 20 points and eight rebounds per game this season. 

Martin Sr. said he supported his son's decision to skip college:

"I just asked him was he sure. A lot of emotions go into that thought process. The more that I thought about it, I understood. I understand my son well. It wasn't something that was far-fetched. I let him know everything that goes into this decision. We took about a week to make sure he still wanted to do it.

"I dug in, did some homework and let him know what people were saying. It wasn't a popular choice. But who cares what is the popular choice? That was my thought process. I told Stackhouse, 'You can't send him somewhere if his heart is not in it. You can't put him in a situation where he is not going to be all in.'"

Martin Sr. was the top overall pick in the 2000 NBA draft. It's possible that Martin Jr. won't be selected in the first round at all, however. Josh Gershon of 247Sports.com projected him to be a second-round pick, offering the following scouting report:

"Extremely athletic post who has shown significant improvement over last year. Somewhat undersized for [power forward] but freak athleticism makes up for it. Strong kid but not maxed out physically. High level rebounder on both ends; many of his points come from the offensive glass. Has decent jumper out to elbow and has improved back to basket game. Could become more consistent perimeter shooter and add to post moves. Has upside as defender due to freakish leaping ability. Will get NBA attention due to absurd physical tools."

Sam Vecenie of The Athletic didn't have Martin in his two-round mock draft on March 19, though that was before he declared for the draft. 

Martin could pop for teams in his predraft workouts, and he may already be on the radar of NBA scouts. But from the outside looking in, it appears as though his decision to bypass college did not have a major positive impact on his draft stock.