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Clippers, Kenyon Martin agree to deal

Feb 3, 2012, 1:33 PM EDT

Kenyon Martin Getty Images

When you say Clippers you better start to use the word contender with it.

Los Angeles filled in a major need — depth along the front line — by agreeing to terms Kenyon Martin, he will sign a mini mid-level deal of $2.5 million for this season (pro-rated by games played), reports the Los Angeles Times. That report has been confirmed by multiple other sources.

Martin reportedly wanted guaranteed playing minutes and to be on a contender, he gets that with the Clippers — and in a town where he lives in the summer.

The Clippers could have Martin as soon as next week, maybe. Martin had played in China and was supposed to have to wait until that season ended to sign with an NBA team (Feb. 16 for his team as they were not likely making the playoffs). However basketball international governing body FIBA reportedly granted him a Letter of Clearance to play now. Chinese officials are trying to block that.

Whenever he arrives, this is a huge get for the Clippers. Martin is an athletic power forward who will be the first big off the bench behind Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan for the Clips. He is 34 years old and not as explosive as he once was but he averaged 8.6 points and 6.2 rebounds in Denver last year and would provide a real toughness the Clippers could use. He also gets to join former Denver teammate Chauncey Billups.

The Clippers beat out the Lakers, Heat, Hawks Knicks and Spurs (at least, maybe more) to secure his services.

  1. damp1015 - Feb 3, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    Clippers were already dangerously contending, now I wonder if this is what will make them the next best in the West.

  2. narrabeen23 - Feb 3, 2012 at 2:05 PM

    YES! The Clippers are officially title contenders!

  3. tomshoe - Feb 3, 2012 at 3:07 PM

    Oh man. The rich get richer, I suppose.

    • progress2011 - Feb 5, 2012 at 8:54 PM

      If you mean rich in talent, I agree. However if you are talking monetarily, the Clips are one of the smaller market teams and don’t have nearly as much money as the Knicks or definitely not as much as the lakers.

  4. southbeachtalent - Feb 3, 2012 at 3:15 PM

    Are you guys serious? Kenyon Martin? I think the Clippers are worse today.

    • chrisppers - Feb 4, 2012 at 1:24 AM

      Think somebody’s drunken too much hatorade, your bitter smelling breath is fowl

  5. 00maltliquor - Feb 3, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    Crazy. Clippers and title contenders together in the same sentence is nuts to hear. If you would’ve told me that 2 years ago I would have had to put you into a psych ward.

  6. cured76 - Feb 3, 2012 at 3:48 PM

    Neil Olshey is gonna be the exec of the year. It’s funny how fast the perceptions and fortunes of the franchise turn around after 1 trade. Now collecting role players will be pretty easy, just as it was last year when Miami’s big three enticed a few older role players to take lesser money to be on a winner.

    • goforthanddie - Feb 3, 2012 at 4:04 PM

      Really? Who’d Miami get that was worth having? Curry? Howard? Yeah, productive talent willing to take minimum sure flocked south.

      • passerby23 - Feb 3, 2012 at 9:20 PM

        I would say Mike Miller and Shane Battier were pretty good signings when they could’ve made more money elsewhere. But, there have been some busts: Curry, Bibby, Howard.

  7. kyleortonsarm - Feb 3, 2012 at 4:05 PM

    He doesn’t make them a title contender any more than he made Denver or New Jersey contenders. Good player though.

    • progress2011 - Feb 5, 2012 at 8:58 PM

      He is coming off the bench as opposed to starting. He is a very, very good back-up to Blake. Wait till they play your team the ( laker-fakers ) again and you will see first hand, what his impact will be.

  8. ranoversquarells - Feb 3, 2012 at 5:00 PM

    Clippers contenders? No wonder the Mayans said the worlds coming to an end …

  9. cantonbound13 - Feb 3, 2012 at 5:24 PM

    Funny how LeBron & Wade bragged how they would recruit talented players to South Beach for the veteran minimum. All they could get was a washed up Bibby, Battier & fat Eddie Curry.

    • progress2011 - Feb 5, 2012 at 9:04 PM

      Eddy Curry is not fat anymore. He lost 30-50 lbs. If you didn’t know that, you’re not watching the game. Bron-Bron and Wade joking around and beating teams, so they don’t need him right now. But as he gets his b-ball legs, Curry will pay dividends by just being a tough, big-body in the playoffs.

      Once he gets his legs, I will take his toughness and intimidation, in a bet over most Centers in the East except Howard.

  10. brooklynbulls - Feb 3, 2012 at 6:53 PM

    They are twenty games into a locked out season, and many teams’ players are just starting to get their legs. Its far too early to consider the Clippers contenders. I get everyone’s excited about Paul and Griffin and they are entertaining but people are getting ahead of themselves.

    Blake has to develop a more all around game, the team needs at least two more pieces (Martin doesnt make them contenders), plus time to gel as a unit, and their coach is Vinny Del Negro.

    Until they can get past the Thunder, Nuggets, Lakers, Mavs and/or the Spurs in a 7 game series, they remain a really good team but not a contender.

    • passerby23 - Feb 3, 2012 at 9:23 PM

      I think this team goes as far as Blake Griffin’s game takes them. If he can polish his post game and continue getting better, they’re championship contenders. As of right now, I agree, they might need time to gel.

      Plus, lob city looks great in the regular season with a crammed schedule and tired legs. When defenses tighten up in the playoffs, can you execute? Can they win on the road? We don’t know the answers to these questions yet. If I had to pick today, I think they are good for a series win or two. I picked them to finish fourth in the West at the start of the season and I see no reason to change that prediction now.

      • Kurt Helin - Feb 4, 2012 at 12:30 PM

        My 2¢: I don’t question Chris Paul come the playoffs (and certainly not Billups), but I do question Vinny Del Negro. His simple sets that give CP3 a lot of freedom work well in the regular season, but come game 3 of a tough playoff series can he develop good counters to what the opponent is doing? I don’t know. I’m not sold he can.

  11. chuckj1234 - Feb 3, 2012 at 7:17 PM

    The Lakers have a lousy bench. Mitch still on vacation? They could have used him. Any thing is better than what they have.

  12. cosanostra71 - Feb 3, 2012 at 7:53 PM

    it’s a nice pickup for the Lakers’ little brother. Some great basketball being played at Staples, gotta love it.

    • progress2011 - Feb 5, 2012 at 9:09 PM

      Most Little brothers end up spanking big brothers. I spanked my big brother after returning from Marine Corp basic training. Been spanking him ever since !!! ahahaha

  13. detroitcityryda - Feb 3, 2012 at 9:05 PM

    I’m sick of clippers lakers heat Knicks barkley was right nba has become boring when prime time games are only those 4 teams ,it’s like I got the clippers season pass such crap nba has become .the other teams they play for what ?

    • Kurt Helin - Feb 4, 2012 at 12:33 PM

      The Clippers? Honestly, two years ago nobody would go near them, now they’re a destination.

    • 00maltliquor - Feb 4, 2012 at 5:07 PM

      WTF you talking about detroitcityryda??? The Clips are the WORST SPORTS franchise in HISTORY!! Sick of the Clippers? What the hell have they EVER done?? And what happens when (I’m going to assume with the name detroit…) the Pistons climb out the hole in 2-3 years? Should we all be sick of that franchise for being great all those years in the 2000’s and the championships they won in the freakin’ ’80’s? Don’t be such a jealous hater and wait your turn, man. It’s not a good look.

  14. Justin - Feb 4, 2012 at 12:03 AM

    This fills an obviously hole on that team. Maurice Evan or whatever his name is just wasn’t getting it done. However, I don’t see them going too far with how poorly Griffin and DeAndre shoot their FTs. Come playoff time I think a coach would turn “Lob City: into “hard foul them and send them to the line city”.

    • cinnalocks - Feb 4, 2012 at 7:41 PM

      Reggie Evans is a defender, banger and rebounder, the kind you need come playoff time, just like Kmart. Kenyon Martin is also a poor free throw shooter and has a poor jump shot, problems in a half court set, how did they fill an obvious hole?

    • progress2011 - Feb 5, 2012 at 9:14 PM

      The thing about fouls, someone has to commit them. So, if you try to do the hack-a-Griffin, that means someone is fouling out.
      Plus, CP3 and Chauncey are in the back court. They usually only pass the ball to Griffin in scoring positions, so many of the fouls may be 3 point plays, if he makes the free throw.

      Roll the dice !!!

  15. jimsjam33 - Feb 4, 2012 at 6:45 PM

    Ralph Lawler , ” Oh me Oh my . ”

    The Clippers are now odds on to win the title . Unbelievable ! Kenyon Martin makes the Clippers woweee !

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