Clippers sign free agent Martin


BY DEREK BARSNESS, Couchsideshow.com writer

Free agent power forward Kenyon Martin signed with the Los Angeles Clippers on Friday. Photo by: Jason Thompson / Flickr

Free agent power forward Kenyon Martin has agreed to terms on a deal with the Los Angeles Clippers.  Martin had been playing for the Xinjiang Guanghui Flying Tigers in China, but reached a buyout in his contract back in December.  The deal is worth $2.5 million.

I like this deal for a couple of reasons.  The first is that K-Mart can still play.  He has always been solid defensively and while his offense isn’t his strong point, he is a good rebounder and can get hot from night to night.  Martin, 34, averaged 8 points and 6 rebounds with the Denver Nuggets last year before heading to China during the NBA lockout.  Martin also provides valuable depth for the Clippers.  Facing six game road trips twice in the next six weeks, Martin will provide much needed rest for Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan.

The downside to Martin is the risk of injury.  He seems to have perpetual knee problems and hasn’t played in over 70 games since the ’07-’08 season.  And since that season his games played have dropped steadily each year due to injury.  Last season he played in only 48 games and averaged just 25.7 minutes per game, the lowest of his career.

The Clippers are off to a 13-7 start and hold a one game ahead of the Lakers in the Pacific Division.

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