Nevada basketball alum Cody Martin is headed to the NBA.
Martin was selected at No. 36 overall in Thursday's draft by the Charlotte Hornets, snapping the Wolf Pack's streak of eight straight years without a draft selection. Martin grew up in Mocksville, N.C., and will get to play NBA ball in his home state. Mocksville is 60 minutes north of Charlotte.
Martin came to Nevada after two seasons at North Carolina State. He helped the Wolf Pack win back-to-back Mountain West regular-season titles and earn NCAA Tournament berths in each year, including a Sweet 16 appearance in 2018. Nevada won 57 games during his two seasons on the team.
Martin was a second-team All-MW pick in 2017-18 and a third-team All-MW pick in 2018-19. He was the 2018 MW defensive player of the year. During his two years at Nevada, Martin averaged 13.1 points, 5.4 rebounds, 4.8 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.1 blocks per game while shooting 51.1 percent from the field, including 33.6 percent from three and 72.5 percent from the free throw line.
At North Carolina State, Martin averaged 5.1 points, 3.5 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game. But the move to Nevada allowed him to display his talents as he shifted to the full-time point guard role in 2018-19. The 6-foot-7, 205-pound Martin might not have received as much attention as twin brother, Caleb, or Jordan Caroline during his time with the Wolf Pack, but his game is a good fit for the NBA. Martin participated in the G League Elite Camp this offseason before being invited to the full NBA Combine, his draft stock climbing during the pre-draft process.
Martin is capable of defending multiple positions and is a tall ball handler who showed improved shooting during his senior season when he made 35.8 percent of his threes. Martin is the first Wolf Pack player to be drafted since 2010 when Luke Babbitt went in the first round and Armon Johnson in the second. He's the 15th player in Nevada history picked in the NBA draft, including the seventh since the draft went to the modern two-round format in 1989.
Martin will likely be slotted in as a play-facilitating guard. Charlotte's starting point guard, Kemba Walker, a three-time All-Star, is a free agent this summer, and the team's backup point guard last season, Tony Parker, retired this offseason.
Second-round picks do not automatically receive guaranteed contracts but most make their way onto rosters. Last season, 24 of the 30 second-round picks played in the league, with two of the six that didn't staying overseas. In 2017, all but one of the second-round picks from college played in the league.
Martin was one of three Mountain West players to be drafted. Wyoming’s Justin James went 40th to the Kings and San Diego State’s Jalen McDaniels went 52nd to the Hornets. Brandon Clarke, who began his career at San Jose State before transferring to Gonzaga, went 21st overall to Memphis.