Kevin Porter Jr., a guard for the Houston Rockets, was reportedly arrested in New York City on Monday morning, accused of assaulting his girlfriend.
Reports suggest that Porter allegedly caused his girlfriend to sustain a fractured neck vertebra and a cut above her right eye at the Millennium Hilton in Manhattan.
The 23-year-old player has entered a plea of not guilty to felony charges of assault and strangulation.
In the ongoing developments regarding the Kevin Porter Jr. situation, the NBA has initiated an investigation into the allegations against him.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has expressed his response to the matter, and the Houston Rockets are reportedly considering the possibility of trading him.
Adam Silver’s Reaction
During the NBA’s Board of Governors meeting on Wednesday, September 13th, Commissioner Adam Silver was questioned about Kevin Porter’s eligibility and whether he would be permitted to take part in the Houston Rockets’ upcoming training camp scheduled for later this month.
Adam Silver expressed that the allegations are deeply troubling, emphasizing their severity.
He explained that the NBA’s domestic violence policy was collaboratively established with the player’s association, underscoring their shared commitment to addressing this critical issue.
Adam Silver addresses allegations against Rockets’ Kevin Porter Jr. for alleged attack on girlfriend Kysre Gondrezick. NBA monitoring closely for appropriate action.
— NBArepublic.com (@nba_republic) September 13, 2023
According to the league’s regulations, both the commissioner’s office and the team are unable to impose penalties simultaneously, even if the league is actively investigating the matter.
This situation has raised uncertainties regarding Kevin Porter’s status within the Houston Rockets.
At present, the league and the team are collaborating to collect additional information, and no determination has been reached regarding the player’s future.
“Every case also depends on its unique facts. I think here, when we’re not in season, there is a little bit more of an opportunity to absorb more of what’s happening before we act,” Silver explained. “I think if it were a case when we were in the middle of the season, we would be compelled to do something faster. And so, while ultimately we’re required to be differential to law enforcement when there’s an investigation, I think this has given us the opportunity, because we are not in season, to take a little bit of time to understand the situation.”
Silver mentioned that there is a window of time available to determine whether it would be suitable for Kevin Porter to participate in the Houston Rockets’ upcoming training camp in the following weeks.
Rockets Seek Porter Trade
The Houston Rockets are actively pursuing a trade for their guard, Kevin Porter Jr., following his felony assault charges related to an alleged attack on his girlfriend as reported by The Athletic.
The Rockets have reached out to several teams, offering draft picks as an incentive to acquire Porter.
He is currently under a four-year, $82.5 million deal, with the 2023-24 season slated at $15.9 million, including three non-guaranteed years.
In these trade scenarios involving Porter’s contract, the Rockets aim to use his salary to acquire a player with an existing contract who can immediately contribute to the team’s performance.
Teams considering taking on Porter’s contract via trade must consider the public perception of acquiring a player facing felony assault and strangulation charges.
Additionally, they must weigh whether the draft picks offered are sufficient compensation for essentially obtaining an expiring contract, which they may likely release upon completion of the trade.
Due to his upcoming court appearance on October 16th, it is unlikely that Kevin Porter will be part of the Rockets’ training camp scheduled for early October.