Houston Rockets guard-forward Kevin Porter Jr. was arrested Monday in New York on charges of assault and strangulation related to an alleged domestic violence incident.
The 23-year-old guard is accused of hitting his girlfriend multiple times and putting his hands around her neck, police said (via the Associated Press). She was said to have been taken to a hospital with a laceration to her face, following an altercation that occurred at a hotel in midtown Manhattan.
The Rockets and the NBA said in separate statements that they were in the process of gathering information about the alleged incident.
Porter is entering his fourth season with the Rockets following a 2021 trade from the Cleveland Cavaliers, with whom he spent his first NBA season after he was selected 30th overall in the 2019 draft. In October, he agreed to a reported four-year extension with Houston that had only the first year guaranteed, at a salary of approximately $16 million.
Listed at 6-foot-4 and 203 pounds, Porter is coming off his best statistical season, one that saw him set career highs in points per game (19.2), minutes played (34.3) and player efficiency rating (16.2). His contract stipulations, however, gave the Rockets a relatively light investment into a player with a record of behavioral issues.
In November 2020, when Porter was involved in a single-car crash while with the Cavaliers, police arrested him on handgun, vehicular, and marijuana charges, which were later dropped. He was sidelined for the start of that season with reported personal issues, then traded away from Cleveland midway through the season after he reportedly engaged in a screaming match with Cavaliers officials following a change to his locker location.
The NBA fined Porter in April 2021 for violating league health and safety protocols by entering a Miami nightlife establishment. In January 2022, the Rockets suspended Porter after he reportedly left an arena midgame following a halftime confrontation with the coaching staff. Porter was also suspended during his one season at Southern California for what the school described as a "conduct issue."
Police described Porter’s alleged victim in Monday’s arrest as a 26-year-old woman. According to ABC News, which cited police sources, she is a former WNBA player.