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Kenyon Martin Wants to Re-Sign with NY Knicks

dfavale March 25, 2013 Dan Favale 3 Comments

Kenyon Martin doesn’t want his ride with the New York Knicks to end.

After spending most of the season waiting by the phone for an NBA team to give him a shout, the 35-year-old Martin has found a home in the Big Apple. And per Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com, he’d like to keep it that way.

Will the feeling be mutual?

If Martin continues to play the way he’s been playing, we’d be hard-pressed to say otherwise.

Since joining the Knicks, Martin has provided instant two-way athleticism. He’s someone who works well off the pick-and-roll and thrives off put-backs, and he can even contend with a healthy Tyson Chandler for New York’s most dangerous rim-protector.

On the season, Martin is averaging 13.5 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.4 blocks on 62.7 percent shooting per 36 minutes. He’s been a source of consistent energy both off the bench and in the starting lineup, and he’s proved he can log heavy when called upon. And he’s been able to remind the rest of the league that he’s not just a thug a in the process.

As impressive as Martin has been in New York, though, there’s no telling what the Knicks’ plans with him beyond this season are. Marcus Camby remains fragile, and Kurt Thomas and Rasheed Wallace seem headed for retirement, so there is room in team’s rotation moving forward. An injury-prone Amar’e Stoudemire only increases the need for a guy a like Martin.

The problem then?

Dollars and cents.

New York is unlikely to offer Martin more (or much more) than the league minimum. Mostly because he’ll be going on 36, but partly because they can’t offer him much more. With J.R. Smith considered a lock to explore free agency, the Knicks may have their attention and money committed to re-signing him. If another faction swoops in and offers Martin a slightly more lofty one year deal, he could jump at the opportunity.

 

That this is even an option attests to Martin’s renaissance. He wasn’t expected to play too prominent a role upon signing either of his 10-day contracts. Injury have since forced him into the starting lineup. Even after Chandler returns, Martin is destined to be the first big man New York calls off the bench. Not bad for a guy who was sitting on his couch waiting for the phone to ring a month ago. And certainly not bad for a 35-year-old.

Speaking of which, we’ve also got to consider Martin’s age. Mike Woodson and the historically old Knicks haven’t shied away from signing aging veterans, but after navigating the minefield of age-related injuries, they will undoubtedly be wary of where what little money they have is going this summer.

Still, you have to like Martin’s chances of returning to New York. It’s been there where he’s been able to revive his career and help restore his image. And it’s been there where he’s been able to help the Knicks win.

It’s difficult to imagine the battered and financially restricted Knicks giving him up without some sort of fight.

Dan Favale is a firm believer in the three-pointer as well as the notion that defense doesn’t always win championships. His musings can be found at Bleacherreport.com in addition to TheHoopDoctors.com. Follow @danfavale on Twitter for his latest posts and all things NBA.

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