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ASU Basketball: Unusual Draft Process Made Martin’s Decision to Return Easy

Remy Martin on Pac-12 Network's "Pac-12 Perspective" Podcast
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Senior guard Remy Martin's decision to return to Arizona State became increasingly clear throughout his offseason.

He entered the NBA Draft back in March, but did not get a typical draft process. The raging coronavirus pandemic took away his postseason and the ability to work out for teams and gain a rapport with scouts and coaches.

He discussed the uncertainty of the process on the Pac-12 Network's "Pac-12 Perspective" podcast on Tuesday.

"It was a roller coaster just because every day standing by my phone making sure if there was a call regarding if things were going to open up and happen," Martin said.

He said he was disappointed that he could not perform for teams in workouts with other draft-worthy players and show how he can lead on the court vocally and as a facilitator.

But, despite flirting with the prospects of becoming a pro, Martin is still enthusiastic about his return to the Valley.

"Arizona State was somewhere I wanted to be and also to finish out my senior year," Martin said. "I'm happy to be back, and hopefully, we have a season."

His head coach Bobby Hurley said that he sensed Martin was at peace with his decision on a Zoom press conference last week.

Hurley made it clear that he wants what is best for Martin, a player who he has coached for three years and has become the leader of his team. Because of this, Hurley expressed his sadness that Martin wasn't able to fully show draft scouts what he could do on the biggest stages.

"A part of me was upset for him that he didn't get the stage that he needed in the Pac-12 Tournament and NCAA Tournament that I think would've put him in a better position to be recognized as a draft pick," Hurley said.

But, both Hurley and Martin understand that the guard's return opens a lot of doors for the team and for Martin to gain exposure and accolades.

Hurley put on the table the potential of Martin winning the Pac-12 Player of the Year, becoming an All-American and maybe going down as one of the greatest Sun Devils of all time.

Martin said he wants to win a national championship, just like Hurley at Duke twice in the early '90s.

With Martin's return along with senior guard Alonzo Verge's and the strong incoming freshman class, including five-star recruit Josh Christopher, Martin has an idea of how his team can be explosive.

"I hope we go 20-0," Martin said. "I think a lot of people can expect a lot of energy, up and down pace, running, throwing lobs, all sorts of things. Anything that involves high energy. A lot of full-court defense and a lot of charges.

"We have a lot of exciting high flyers, and we have a lot of guys who love the game as much as I. When you have guys who love the game and want to win, it creates this ball of energy that's contagious."

Another point that Martin appreciates about his return is the connection he feels with the ASU fans and community.

"One thing I know is that the way Arizona State has brought me here and showed me, love, is one of the things I will never forget in life," Martin said.

He said he wishes he could send out presents to all of his supporters.

Martin has been a fan favorite at ASU from early in his freshman season. From spark plug sixth-man to scoring leader, Martin has been a face of ASU basketball for three years.

The roars Martin got during games, the love on social media and around the campus was a big reason for his return.

"I love what I'm doing, but you guys make me love it so much more," Martin said about his supporters.

Martin stated that his mindset will be the same entering his senior season as any other.

He didn't say he would try to score 25 points per game or try more difficult shots to improve his tape for the draft.

He wants to win and will be the same player in that pursuit. He has made tweaks, including working on being more consistent with his jump shot this offseason. But his goal is very simple.

"I always shoot for the stars," Martin said. "Winning a national championship, being in the same conversation as coach Hurley and winning one just like him. I know he wants that just as much as I do."