Kenyon Martin was one of the toughest players on the basketball players on the court. When he talks you listen.
During a recent conversation with Basketball News, Martin spoke about battles on the hardwood with Kevin Garnett.
“There were some guys like that back when I played, too,” said Martin.
“Kevin Garnett was a porch puppy — a miniature chihuahua in a Dobermann’s body. I told him to his face, “You’re a porch puppy. All you do is bark.” He never wanted smoke from me. I told him straight up, “You better take your ass back to your huddle before I get mad.” Dahntay Jones heard it; you can ask him.”
The Internet buzzed for a few days about it.
Garnett issued a rebuttal through Instagram stories stating: “Real bro’s, real love. Stop it internet. Ya’ll stop it!”
Drafted by the then-New Jersey Nets in 2000, Martin lived his best life catching alley-oops from future Hall of fame point guard Jason Kidd. The two would make two trips to the NBA Finals.
Martin has been vocal about his peers at the forward position. Appearing on the Scoop B Radio Podcast a few years ago, Martin discussed playing against Tim Duncan’s Spurs in the 2003 NBA Finals. “They had a good team, Tim Duncan played his ass off,” Martin told me.
“He made plays, he blocked; that is why he was the finals MVP. He played his ass off. I have to take my hat off to him, he played well. He put them on his back and they followed him.It was a collective effort, but Tim [Duncan] definitely led them.”
Martin also shared that Vince Carter would’ve helped Nets win NBA Finals had Martin stayed in New Jersey with Jason Kidd, Kerry Kittles and Richard Jefferson. “Yes, without a doubt, without a doubt,” Martin told Scoop B Radio.
“That is a great piece. We were running, jumping, having fun, being athletic and he would fit right in with that.”
He has also spoke reverently his college career at Cincinnati under head coach, Bob Huggins. “It was great for me,” Kenyon Martin told Scoop B Radio.
“A lot of people’s experience with Hugs is not the same; because I play basketball the way Hugs wants you to play basketball.”
During a 15 year career NBA that included stops with the Nets, Denver Nuggets, Los Angeles Clippers, New York Knicks and Milwaukee Bucks, Martin averaged 12.3 points and 6.8 rebounds per contest.
An NBA Champion with the Boston Celtics, 15-time NBA All-Star, 2003 regular season MVP, 2007-08 NBA Defensive Player of the Year, Kevin Garnett is headed to the Naismith Hall of Fame.
The Minnesota Timberwolves’ fifth pick in the 1995 NBA Draft out of Chicago’s Farragut Academy, Garnett became the first NBA player drafted directly out of high school in 20 years.
Garnett retired from basketball in 2016 with career averages of 17.8 points, ten rebounds and 3.7 assists per contest.
While Martin has gotten criticism for his candidness about Garnett. Garnett has also spoken candidl about players, too.
In an interview with Garnett in 2018, he told me that he considers T-Wolves big man, Karl Anthony Towns ‘the future.’
“When you come into this league, you don’t believe there’s a better player. But when he came into it, I see a lot of similarities in Karl to myself. If I could ever be an inspiration and lead him into that, I’ve always wanted to be that. And the fact that he took heed and took some of the advice I gave him is more than honorable, so it’s dope.”
Garnett also said he’d start Derrick Rose at point guard. “Yeah, I would,” Garnett told me.
“You know, you get older, but the knowledge don’t go anywhere. He’s more crafty now than ever in the pick-and-roll. He’s able to get shots for guys and he’s able to knock shots down, so yeah, I would.”
Also in 2018, Garnett said that the Los Angeles Lakers would face ‘learning lessons’ with LeBron James in year one. “I don’t know,” the retired NBA vet told me.
“I don’t know. I think we’re all going to see it and it’s going to be a learning lesson for the Lakers this year.
“They got the best player in the world. His influence causes everyone else to be better.”