Martin showing Celts what might have been

Martin showing Celts what might have been
March 25, 2013, 9:00 pm
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WALTHAM, Mass. — Even before the Boston Celtics were beset by a series of injuries, Kenyon Martin was a player on the C's radar.

That interest did not go any further than mere curiosity.

After months without an NBA team, Kenyon Martin finally got a shot with the New York Knicks.

And what began with a 10-day contract for Martin, has become a deal guaranteed for the rest of this season.

If the Knicks are to indeed hold on and win the Atlantic Division crown, the late-season addition of the 6-foot-9 veteran will indeed be a factor.

Already without Amar'e Stoudemire and former Celtic Rasheed Wallace to regular season-ending issues, New York's frontcourt took another blow when the Knicks learned that 40-year-old Kurt Thomas would be out at least two weeks due to a stress fracture injury in his right foot.

With so many key big men out for extended periods of time with injuries, the addition of Martin has given New York a much-needed presence at both ends of the floor in the frontcourt.

"He's been great," C's coach Doc Rivers said of Martin. "I'm happy for Kenyon. I'm not happy that he went to the Knicks. But I am happy for him."

Rivers can't be too upset, especially considering the Celtics had ample opportunities to sign him and declined to offer him a contract.

Rivers acknowledged prior to Monday's practice that the C's did take a look at possibly adding him to the roster.

"We looked at other guys," Rivers said in explaining why the Celtics did not try to sign Martin. "We were looking at other guards at that time. So we were in no hurry at that time for a big. By the time we got around to it, he was gone."

All those New York injuries have allowed Martin to become a starter.

The Knicks are 4-2 this season with Martin on the floor with the first group. In those six games, he has averaged 12.1 points and 7.1 rebounds while shooting 67.3 percent from the field.