ARIZONA STATE BASKETBALL

ASU has ‘good feeling’ Remy Martin can play through injury vs. St. John’s

Mar 18, 2019, 11:17 AM | Updated: 1:30 pm
Arizona State guard Remy Martin (1) passes as he is pressured by Southern California defenders duri...
Arizona State guard Remy Martin (1) passes as he is pressured by Southern California defenders during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Arizona State coach Bobby Hurley feels optimistic about the health of point guard Remy Martin’s injured groin heading into the Sun Devils’ NCAA Tournament First Four matchup against St. John’s.

Martin tweaked his groin Friday in a Pac-12 Tournament semifinals loss to Oregon but continued playing.

The muscle injury appeared to loosen up as Martin fought through it, and Hurley told Doug & Wolf on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station that it had improved more as of Sunday.

“He looked terrific yesterday,” Hurley said Monday. “The game isn’t right now so we’re going to be very careful with him. He’s got plenty of reps under his belt. It’s been a long season. He’s in a great shape so we’re going to monitor him closely, really be careful with what he does on the floor between now and Wednesday night.

“He’s a gamer. He was already moving really well yesterday and in our conversations led me to believe he’ll be his regular self.”

That said, Hurley has good reason to express optimism heading into the Sun Devils’ Wednesday matchup against the Red Storm, which will air on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station. Martin is averaging 13.4 points and 5.1 assists per game and is one of the team’s most explosive scorers.

Making sure coach Chris Mullens and the St. John’s staff accounts for him perhaps is a bit of gamesmanship.

Then again, Martin did play through his injury. But Hurley admitted Martin’s groin issue affected ASU in the 79-75 overtime loss to Oregon.

Martin scored 14 points in 31 minutes but went 3-of-10 from the field as his lack of explosiveness hurt him off the bounce and limited his ability to move laterally on defense.

“It’s unfortunate,” Hurley said. “We were playing so well.”

The Oregon loss likely bumped the Sun Devils into a First Four game in Dayton, but consider the circumstances, and there’s reason to believe ASU will do everything to have Martin game-ready.

He could be the foil to Red Storm junior Shamorie Ponds, who is averaging 19.5 points, 5.2 assists and 2.6 steals per game. The 6-foot-1 guard is shooting 46 percent from the floor and is a 36 percent three-point shooter. According to ESPN, he is a top-50 NBA prospect.

Perhaps with that thought in mind, Hurley doesn’t sound like he will hold Martin out against St. John’s for precautionary reasons and look ahead to welcoming him back for a potential Friday matchup against No. 6 seed Buffalo.

“The thought crossed my mind that if we were in Dayton that I might just sit Remy and hope we could get through the game and have him ready for later in the week,” Hurley admitted. “When your season’s on the line, your thoughts could change very quickly. That could be the case on Wednesday night.

“It’s just my conversations with Remy — I trust him when we talk. He’s telling me he’s getting so much better every day so I have a good feeling he’ll be close to 100 percent by Wednesday night.”

Arizona State Basketball

Bennedict Mathurin #0 of the Arizona Wildcats high fives Azuolas Tubelis #10 after a three-point sh...
Arizona Sports

Arizona Wildcats just outside AP preseason men’s basketball poll

The Arizona Wildcats garnered 26 points in the preseason men's basketball Associated Press poll for 2021-22.
23 hours ago
Arizona's Bennedict Mathurin, left, speaks next to Azuolas Tubelis during Pac-12 Conference men's N...
Nicholas Hodell

CBS’s Norlander ranks Arizona basketball in top 30, ASU in top 100

CBS Sports senior writer Matt Norlander is higher than most on Arizona basketball, putting the Wildcats in 29th in his preseason rankings.
3 days ago
Arizona guard Dalen Terry (4) drives between Arizona State's Josh Christopher (13), Jalen Graham (2...
Arizona Sports

Arizona picked in top 5, ASU No. 7 in Pac-12 preseason hoops poll

In the Pac-12 preseason basketball poll, Arizona was picked tied for fourth while Arizona State was picked to finish No. 7.
7 days ago
Arizona State forward Marcus Bagley celebrates during the second half of the team's NCAA college ba...
Nicholas Hodell

ASU basketball fresh faces bring effort, communication alongside returning vets

New faces, extra effort and teamwide communication has Arizona State men's basketball looking for a fresh start.
14 days ago
Arizona State coach Bobby Hurley talks to Marcus Bagley during the first half of the team's NCAA co...
Arizona Sports

Arizona State-Arizona featured in Pac-12 men’s hoops TV schedule

The Arizona State Sun Devils and Arizona Wildcats will be featured in the Pac-12's national TV slate for the 2021-22 men's basketball season.
21 days ago
Follow @AZSports...
Arizona Sports

Pac-12 and SWAC form 1st basketball series between Power 5, HBCUs

The Pac-12 and the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) are forming a basketball educational and scheduling partnership.
30 days ago
ASU has ‘good feeling’ Remy Martin can play through injury vs. St. John’s