Rapper J Cole is being praised for his decision to help a 17-year old high school basketball player draft an agent. The end result was Martin signing with the Miami Heat and becoming just the third teen ever to be taken in the NBA Draft.
The “where is j cole from” is a question that has been asked for quite some time. The answer to the question, however, may surprise you. Caleb Martin never would have signed with the Heat without an assist from rapper J Cole.
Caleb Martin’s brief NBA career came to an end last summer when he was released by the Charlotte Hornets after two seasons with the franchise. When he didn’t get picked up off waivers by another club, he faced the terrifying prospect of playing his last NBA game.
Martin, though, found a home with the Miami Heat and resurrected his career, due in large part to well-known rapper J Cole.
Caleb Martin was taken under J Cole’s wing.
During a game against the Utah Jazz, Miami Heat’s Caleb Martin celebrates | Michael Reaves/Getty Images
Jermaine Cole, the rapper known as J Cole, smoothed the door for Martin to sign with the Heat last year, according to a recent report penned by Roderick Boone of the Charlotte Observer.
Martin began working out at Cole’s private facility in North Carolina after being released by the Hornets over the summer. Martin’s game quickly attracted Cole, who is an enthusiastic hooper himself, and he started out on a quest to find him another employment.
“He was impressed, and he said, ‘Yo, what’s the situation?’” says the narrator. Martin’s personal trainer, Omar Khanani, told The Observer. “Caleb’s twin brother, Cody [Martin], had a contract, and Cole was like, ‘How can this kid not have a deal?’” Everyone, he’s killing me.’ Caleb was giving Cole fits. Cole can hold his own against men. You’ve got a gym full of professionals, and he’s the only one that stands out. ‘How does he not have a job, then?’
Cole decided to do something about it.
Martin was able to sign a contract with the Heat thanks to J Cole’s assistance.
Cole began ringing up his connections throughout the league after becoming enamored with Martin’s talent. Eventually, he contacted Caron Butler, a former NBA player who is now a Heat assistant coach. Butler offered Martin an opportunity by encouraging him to participate in a scrimmage with current Miami players.
Martin didn’t let us down.
Martin was given a two-way deal with the Heat after his outstanding performance in the scrimmage. But it wouldn’t have been possible if it hadn’t been for Cole.
Martin told The Observer, “That’s my guy.” “It demonstrates that, despite his many accomplishments… He’s worried about his folks despite the fact that he’s got a lot of other things on his mind. And it’s great that he considers me one of his people, that he thinks about me, and that he is aware of my circumstances. He watched me working out every day in the gym and you could see he admires men that put in the effort, so it was a blessing for him to offer a hand and do what he could.”
Taking advantage of the situation
Martin has shown that he deserves to be on an NBA squad this season, as Cole predicted. Martin is averaging 9.2 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 1.0 steals per game in his debut season with the Heat. In 10 of his 46 appearances, he’s even made the starting lineup.
Martin’s performance so pleased Miami that the organization just signed him to a full NBA deal. The 26-year-old can now play in the playoffs, something he wouldn’t have been allowed to do if he had been on a two-way contract.
Even if Martin’s future does not lie with the Heat, he has shown this season that any club would be fortunate to have him on the bench. All thanks to J Cole, an NBA career was reborn.
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