Martin in March 2017
|Born||5 September 1984|
Gloucester, New South Wales
|Listed height||186 cm (6 ft 1 in)|
|Listed weight||91 kg (201 lb)|
|College||Loyola Marymount (2003–2007)|
|NBA draft||2007 / Undrafted|
|2002–2003||Australian Institute of Sport|
|2007–2009||West Sydney Razorbacks / Sydney Spirit|
|2010||East Perth Eagles|
|Career highlights and awards|
Damian Patrick Martin (born 5 September 1984) is an Australian former professional basketball player, best known for his 11 seasons with the Perth Wildcats of the National Basketball League (NBL). After four years of college basketball for Loyola Marymount, Martin began his NBL career in 2007 with the West Sydney Razorbacks. In 2009, he made the move to Perth to join the Wildcats, where he went on to become a six-time NBL champion and six-time NBL Best Defensive Player. He is considered one of the NBL's all-time best defenders.
Early life and career
As a 15-year-old at the NSW Institute of Sport, Martin was influenced by future and long-time mentor Rob Beveridge to concentrate on basketball rather than rugby league, a move that set Martin on the path to his greatest personal achievement – winning a gold medal with the Australian national junior team under Beveridge and alongside the likes of Andrew Bogut at the 2003 FIBA Under-19 World Championship. In 2002 and 2003, Martin attended the Australian Institute of Sport and played for the program's SEABL team.
Between 2003 and 2007, Martin played three seasons of NCAA Division I college basketball for Loyola Marymount University. After a successful freshman and sophomore seasons, he was forced to redshirt the 2005–06 season due to a ruptured Achilles tendon he suffered while playing with the national team. He returned to the Lions in 2006–07. In his three seasons for LMU, he played 88 games (69 starts) and averaged 4.6 points, 3.9 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.8 steals per game, and was a West Coast Conference All-Freshmen team honouree in 2003–04.
West Sydney Razorbacks / Sydney Spirit
In 2007, Martin returned to his home state and signed with the West Sydney Razorbacks of the National Basketball League. Ten games into the 2007–08 season, Martin suffered a season-ending knee injury. He continued on with the club for the 2008–09 season, with their new name being the Sydney Spirit. The Spirit were in dire financial straits during the 2008–09 season, with the 10 contracted players and three coaches, including head coach Rob Beveridge, all agreeing to live off just $150,000 between them to keep the franchise going—roughly $700 per week for Martin. Furthermore, Martin played much of the season with a broken wrist, an injury that occurred during the pre-season tournament. The injury should have sidelined him immediately, but in December 2008, it was noted that Martin didn't want to make a fuss because he put the team first and himself second.
Following the demise of the Sydney Spirit, Martin followed Beveridge west, where the pair joined the Perth Wildcats for the 2009–10 NBL season. Martin saw immediate success, helping the Wildcats win the championship in his first season. In 2011, he won the NBL Best Defensive Player Award for the first time and was named to the All-NBL First Team. Over the ensuing three seasons, he won three more Best Defensive Player awards, was named to the All-NBL Team every year, and helped the Wildcats reach three straight grand finals, winning his second championship in 2014. He missed the 2013 grand final series with a partial tear of his Achilles tendon, an injury that he suffered during the semi-final series. In January 2013, Martin was named co-captain of the Wildcats alongside Shawn Redhage. In October 2013, he was named the sole captain of the Wildcats.
On 14 May 2014, Martin re-signed with the Wildcats on a two-year deal (with the option of a third). On 24 October 2014, he recorded nine rebounds, nine steals and eight assists in an 84–63 win over the Sydney Kings. Nine steals is the second most by a Perth Wildcat in the club's history, behind only Ricky Grace's 10 in 1990. He was subsequently named Player of the Week for round three. On 31 December 2014, in an 86–77 win over the Wollongong Hawks, Martin played his 200th NBL game. In March 2015, Martin was named the NBL's Best Defensive Player for the fifth consecutive year.
On 4 November 2015, Martin suffered a broken jaw and missing teeth following an errant elbow from Townsville Crocodiles forward Brian Conklin. He returned to action by the end of the month, despite originally being ruled out for three weeks. In February, he played his 200th game for the Wildcats, and in March, he won his third NBL championship and was named Grand Final MVP.
On 23 October 2016, Martin recorded a career-high 13 rebounds in a 72–69 win over Melbourne United. During the game, he received a heavy knock to the head, with x-rays revealing a fracture to the left side of his jaw. Consequently, he was ruled out for two weeks of action. He returned after missing just one game, but sustained another injury, this time a grade three MCL tear in his left knee against the Adelaide 36ers on 5 November. He was subsequently ruled out for 10 to 12 weeks. Much like in 2015–16, Martin managed to return from injury earlier than expected, as he joined the playing group for their first game of 2017 on 7 January in Sydney against the Kings. He helped the Wildcats win back-to-back road games for the first time in more than one year, as he picked up a team-high two steals in an 80–74 victory. On 28 January, in his 250th NBL game, Martin scored a season-high 11 points to go with six rebounds and four assists in a 73–71 win over Melbourne. The Wildcats finished the regular season in third place with a 15–13 record, and played the second-seeded Cairns Taipans in the semi-finals, a series the Wildcats swept 2–0. The series sweep advanced the Wildcats into the NBL Grand Final for the sixth time in eight years. In the best-of-five grand final series against the Illawarra Hawks, Martin was superb on defence in Game 1 (limiting the dynamic Rotnei Clarke to just eight shots), hit the scoreboard in Game 2 (scoring 12 points on four three-pointers), and did a bit of everything in Game 3 (three points, five rebounds, three assists, two steals) to lead the Wildcats to a 3–0 series sweep and an eighth NBL championship. Martin collected his fourth championship, as the Wildcats defended their title for the first time since 1990/1991. It was a special championship win according to Martin, due to the team's adversity in 2016–17. The Wildcats slumped to last spot in December (7–9 record) as the team's injury toll started to have a significant impact. Long-term injuries to Martin, Jarrod Kenny and Matt Knight hurt the Wildcats, while early-season import shuffles disrupted the team's cohesiveness. The Wildcats only just scraped through to the finals after beating Melbourne United away in the final round. The victory extended Perth's playoff streak into a record 31st straight season. Martin said in February, "I've been fortunate to be a part of three Championships. If we win it this season, it would mean more to me than any of the other three because of all the adversity we've gone through. It's been such a special season."
The Wildcats started the season 10–3, as they sat atop the ladder following Round 9. On 14 December 2017, Martin was ruled out for a number of games with an ankle injury. In the two games he missed, the Wildcats dropped to 10–5; he made his return for the Wildcats' New Year's Eve game against the Cairns Taipans in Cairns. On 4 February 2018, in a loss to the Adelaide 36ers in Adelaide, Martin played his 250th game for the Wildcats. The Wildcats finished the regular season in third place with a 16–12 record. On the eve of the Wildcats' finals campaign, Martin was named the NBL's Best Defensive Player for the 2017–18 season, earning the honour for a record-breaking sixth time. The Wildcats went on to lose in straight sets to the 36ers in the semi-finals.
A left leg injury kept Martin out of pre-season games in September 2018. After helping the Wildcats start the season with a 4–1 record, he was ruled out of the Wildcats' match on 3 November against the Breakers with a low grade tear to his right calf muscle. He subsequently missed six games. The Wildcats reached a 10–1 record before dropping to 12–9 in early January. On 25 January, he recorded 15 points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals in a 100–81 win over the Adelaide 36ers. On 10 February, he recorded 15 points, seven rebounds, four assists and three steals in a 95–86 overtime win over the Sydney Kings. He hit a 3-pointer late in the fourth quarter to send the game into overtime. The win saw the Wildcats move to a 17–9 record, with coach Trevor Gleeson crediting Martin's form as one of the key reasons for the Wildcats riding a wave of momentum towards the finals. The Wildcats finished with an 18–10 record to claim the minor premiership, before going on to reach the NBL Grand Final series, where they defeated Melbourne United 3–1 to win the championship. Martin and long-time teammate Jesse Wagstaff became the first players in NBL history to win five championships with just one club.
On 5 April 2019, Martin re-signed with the Wildcats for the 2019–20 season. In December 2019, he played his 300th game for the Wildcats. He missed the entire month of January with a left heel injury, returning for the final two regular season games. In March 2020, he was crowned an NBL champion for the sixth time, becoming one of just four players in NBL history to win six titles, with he and teammate Jesse Wagstaff the only to do it at one club. Following the season, it was revealed Martin had played through the year with an Achilles injury that required a post-season reconstruction.
On 21 July 2020, Martin announced his retirement from basketball after 13 seasons in the NBL and 342 games. Upon retiring, the league named its Best Defensive Player trophy in honour of Martin, with the award now known as the Damian Martin Trophy for the Best Defensive Player of the regular season.
Martin is the son of Anne and Raymond Martin, and has three brothers, Daniel, John and Anthony, and one sister, Beth. Martin and his wife, Brittany, have two daughters. His wife's cousin is rugby league player Michael Morgan.
- NBL Awards: Defensive Player of the Year
- Switch from rugby, move to Perth leads Damian Martin to Boomers
- Big bucks from the big Buck? Bogut gets into the Spirit to help old mates
- "Past Athletes". ausport.gov.au. Archived from the original on 12 February 2014.
- "Player statistics for Damian Martin – SEABL". SportTG.com. Retrieved 5 September 2019.
- Damian Martin Stats
- Damian Martin Bio – Loyola Marymount Official Athletic Site
- Hinson keeps Razorbacks in touch of top eight
- Sydney Spirit set to be launched
- That's the Spirit - Martin plays with broken wrist
- Perth Wildcats sign new import
- Award-winning Wildcats
- Award Winning Wildcats
- Martin strengthens claims as NBL's best defender
- Damian Martin ruled out of grand final series
- Perth Wildcats eliminate Wollongong in thriller
- Damian Martin named Perth Wildcats co-captain
- Damian Martin named Perth Wildcats captain
- "Perth Wildcats re-sign Championship captain". Wildcats.com.au. 14 May 2014. Archived from the original on 24 October 2014.
- "Perth Wildcats smash Sydney Kings at Perth Arena". Wildcats.com.au. 24 October 2014. Archived from the original on 24 October 2014.
- R3: Player of the Week
- Damian Martin - 200 NBL Games
- R13 Report: Wildcats spoil the party in Wollongong
- Damian Martin suffers broken jaw in Townsville Crocodiles v Perth Wildcats NBL clash
- DAMIAN MARTIN TO RETURN FROM INJURY
- Damian Martin 200 Perth Wildcats Games
- PERTH WILDCATS TAKE GAME ONE AGAINST HAWKS
- "PERTH WILDCATS – 2016 NBL CHAMPIONS". Archived from the original on 9 March 2016. Retrieved 6 March 2016.
- GF3 REPORT: WILDCATS BREAK NZ HOODOO FOR ANOTHER TITLE
- "DAMIAN MARTIN – GRAND FINAL MVP". Archived from the original on 2 April 2016. Retrieved 8 March 2016.
- Perth Wildcat's Damian Martin named in 12 man Australian Boomers team ahead of Rio Olympics
- DAMIAN MARTIN EXTENDS WILDCATS CONTRACT
- DAMIAN MARTIN SELECTED IN BOOMERS TEAM
- 'CATS SHUT DOWN UNITED FOR FIRST AWAY WIN
- PERTH WILDCATS CLAIM ROAD WIN OVER MELBOURNE
- "MARTIN, KENNY RULED OUT WITH INJURY". Archived from the original on 25 October 2016. Retrieved 25 October 2016.
- SCANS REVEAL MCL TEAR FOR MARTIN
- "COTTON DELIVERS AS WILDCATS DEFEAT KINGS". Archived from the original on 8 January 2017. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- 'CATS MOVE TO THIRD IN MARTIN'S 250TH
- DESPERATE ‘CATS OUT-HUSTLE HAWKS TO TAKE GAME 1
- COPYBOOK ‘CATS REPEAT DOSE MINUS KNIGHT, TAKE 2-0 LEAD
- COTTON DROPS 45 TO COMPLETE ‘CATS GF SWEEP
- "PERTH WILDCATS WIN BACK-TO-BACK NBL CHAMPIONSHIPS". Archived from the original on 5 March 2017. Retrieved 5 March 2017.
- Wildcat Martin hopes for special NBL title
- Perth Wildcats skipper Damian Martin sidelined by ankle injury
- Damian Martin ruled out
- Damian Martin set to return
- Wildcats defeated in Adelaide
- Damian Martin - 250 Perth Wildcats Games
- "Damian Martin wins SIXTH Best Defensive Player award". Wildcats.com.au. 27 February 2018. Retrieved 27 February 2018.
- "Damian Martin sidelined". Wildcats.com.au. 2 November 2018. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
- "Damian Martin still missing for Wildcats". SBS.com.au. 22 November 2018. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
Damian Martin has been absent for four games and will miss another two.
- "Wildcats vs 36ers". FIBALiveStats.com. 25 January 2019. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
- "Cotton Explodes in OT as 'Cats Beat Kings". NBL.com.au. 10 February 2019. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
- O'Donoghue, Craig (9 February 2019). "Damian Martin central to Perth Wildcats' momentum swing: Trevor Gleeson". TheWest.com.au. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
- "Wildcats Clinch Ninth Championship on the Road". NBL.com.au. 17 March 2019. Retrieved 17 March 2019.
- "Wildcats claim Ninth Championship!". Wildcats.com.au. 17 March 2019. Retrieved 17 March 2019.
- "Wildcats Championship Duo Re-Sign". NBL.com.au. 5 April 2019. Retrieved 5 April 2019.
- "Damian Martin to join Wildcats 300 club". Wildcats.com.au. 12 December 2019. Retrieved 12 December 2019.
- "Wildcats Keep Winning in Martin's 300th". NBL.com.au. 14 December 2019. Retrieved 14 December 2019.
- "Damian Martin Injury Update". Wildcats.com.au. 31 December 2019. Retrieved 31 December 2019.
- "Wildcats Lock in Second, Make Bullets' Job Tough". NBL.com.au. 9 February 2020. Retrieved 9 February 2020.
- "Bullet-proof Wildcats defeat Brisbane". Wildcats.com.au. 9 February 2020. Retrieved 9 February 2020.
- "Perth Wildcats Back-to-Back NBL Champions". Wildcats.com.au. 19 March 2020. Retrieved 19 March 2020.
- "Perth Wildcats Crowned NBL20 Champions". NBL.com.au. 19 March 2020. Retrieved 19 March 2020.
- "Legendary Wildcat Damian Martin Announces Retirement". Wildcats.com.au. 21 July 2020. Retrieved 21 July 2020.
- "Six-time NBL champion calls time on incredible career". FoxSports.com.au. 21 July 2020. Retrieved 21 July 2020.
- Wildie, Tom (21 July 2020). "Damian Martin retires from Perth Wildcats after decorated NBL career featuring six titles". abc.net.au. Retrieved 21 July 2020.
- "NBL to Honour Damian Martin". NBL.com.au. 21 July 2020. Retrieved 21 July 2020.
- Player Piece: Damo's Dish
- Fairytale beckons for Damian Martin and family ahead of NBL Grand Final Game 3
- Congrats Skipper! Damian Martin welcomes 2nd Baby Girl
- MY COUSIN IS PLAYING STATE OF ORIGIN!...
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Damian Martin.|
- NBL profile
- Perth Wildcats profile
- NBL stats
- R13 Preview: Martin's 200th falls into place nicely
- Damian Martin – 200 Perth Wildcats Games
- Damian Martin: Red Army Hero
- Damian Martin: Most Inspiring Man
- Australia's Most Humble Rio Olympian Just Had Two Amazing Wins
- Wildcat Martin hopes for special NBL title
- Perth Wildcats skipper Damian Martin on target for another title with strong shooting
- A Life Changing Phone Call
- 300 Games Later: Rob Beveridge and Damian Martin
- Wildcats captain Damian Martin's heroic night, defeats Sydney Kings