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Kenyon Martin talks about George Karl talking too much

Feb 19, 2012, 8:59 PM EDT

Oklahoma City Thunder v Denver Nuggets - Game Three Getty Images

For seven years, Kenyon Martin was a Nugget. For six of those, George Karl was his coach — and those were some pretty good Nuggets teams.

But you don’t have to like someone to work with them. Martin and Karl are not on each other’s Christmas card list.

Karl has remarked multiple times about how the current Nuggets roster — without Martin, without Carmelo Anthony, without J.R. Smith — is easier to coach. The drama is gone, the gunners are gone and Karl couldn’t be much happier with his team that runs, shares the ball and tries to beat you with balance.

Martin didn’t like all those comments, as he told Sam Amick of Sports Illustrated.

“Man, listen, George needs to keep his mouth shut, first and foremost,” Martin said. “Melo don’t play there no more. So Karl shouldn’t be commenting on Melo. If George was such a great coach, then Melo would want to stay. He wouldn’t want to leave.

“If the organization was ran right, he wouldn’t want to leave, so it ain’t Melo. With Melo, not one time when he was there did he bring that in the locker room when all that stuff was going on. Not one day. Everybody made it a bigger deal than it had to be. That’s a good kid. They act like this kid was a cancer, like he came in there and destroyed the locker room and made everybody hate him. No, it wasn’t nothing like that man. And it bothers me for people to be talking about how he’s a selfish player and he has to defend himself.”

So, Karl shouldn’t talk about former players but Martin can talk about former coaches and that’s cool?

Also, Carmelo didn’t bring the trade drama into the locker room? He brought it to the entire organization, from the owner to the ball boy. Anthony’s demand changed the culture in Denver. Could the Nuggets management have handled it better? You bet. But make no mistake, it all started with Anthony. If you don’t think it got into the locker room, well, you are an Anthony apologist.

Which Martin apparently is. That brings us to the comments about Anthony being selfish and questions of if he can fit with Jeremy Lin in New York. Martin has Antimony’s back.

“Smart basketball player, and the best player on that team — hands down. So I don’t understand why people are questioning whether he’s selfish or not. No, the man is not selfish. The man wants to win. He’ll do whatever it takes to win. I don’t think he’ll mess nothing up. He’s going to come in and be Carmelo Anthony.”

I’m with Martin here — Anthony has subjugated is game before to win. He did it in Syracuse to win a national title. He did it on Team USA to win a gold medal. (Although, to be fair, to take a back seat to LeBron James and Kobe Bryant is different than with Jeremy Lin.) But Martin’s right here, Antony is going to do what he thinks is best for the Knicks to win games. We’ll see how that perspective blends in.

Martin is in a great spot the rest of this season with a Clipper team that is a threat in the West. If he brings then what he’s capable they are that much closer. But what will he say about Vinny Del Negro someday?

  1. cakemixa - Feb 19, 2012 at 9:05 PM

    Lol, a guy who just signed with the CLIPPERS talking bad about another organization? All while “running his mouth” about how someone shouldn’t “run their mouth” about a player that isn’t there anymore?

  2. goforthanddie - Feb 19, 2012 at 9:17 PM

    “Antony is going to do what he thinks is best for the Knicks to win games.”

    It’s not his job to think, his job is to follow his coaching and PG. See, him doing what HE thinks is best = selfish.
    As for KMart, he’s an idiot and just proved it worldwide.

    • makjak2 - Feb 19, 2012 at 9:46 PM

      So Kobe shouldn’t do what he thinks is best to win the game, he should follow 1) the coach who said that he’ll follow Kobe’s lead offensively and 2) Derek Fisher’s corpse.

      • goforthanddie - Feb 19, 2012 at 10:55 PM

        When Mr. Vasquez has 1/10 of what Kobe has, he can do as he pleases. That should happen right…about…never.

  3. makjak2 - Feb 19, 2012 at 9:44 PM

    Kurt, I’m glad you know what was in the locker room better than a guy that was in the locker room.

  4. leearmon - Feb 19, 2012 at 10:03 PM

    Kurt you’re amazing. As soon as I want to start giving you credit you come and put junk like this on the site. First off, Carmelo didn’t “demand” anything. If you remember correctly, he told the Nuggets he wasn’t going to re-sign their extension. Obviously Denver knew the writing was on the wall, but to say Carmelo demanded to be traded is categorically false, and I have to believe you know that. Dwight Howard is demanding a trade, Steve Francis demanded a trade, Melo didn’t.

    • themohel - Feb 19, 2012 at 11:40 PM

      Semantics – he didn’t demand a trade, but said he wouldn’t sign with Denver or an extension with any team he was traded to unless they were on his tiny list. How is that different than demanding a trade. He had all the cards, and he played them. I don’t blame him at all because he had the right to do it, but to say he didn’t force the issue (effectively “demand” a trade) is revisionist history.

      • leearmon - Feb 19, 2012 at 11:59 PM

        Absolutely not. To demand a trade is to go out of your way and disrupt the team, front office etc. To not sign a contract extension is business that happens on a year to year basis. Also, there isnt one interview or report that says Carmelo said he wouldn’t sign an extension to play at team A or team B. His agents did all of the talking to the Nuggets in private, so its best we not assume, and only deal with the facts. Again, to say a player demands a trade is completely different than a player choosing not to re-sign. I wouldn’t call it semantics because its completely different. He didn’t “force” anything, in fact Denver had a choice. They could have tried to wait Melo out, or chose not to trade him at all. Carmelo never spoke out about the organization.

      • theghostofwillisreed - Feb 20, 2012 at 7:55 AM

        big difference.

        saying you’re not going to re-sign is not demanding a trade. it’s advising your current team that when your contract expires, you will not consider re-signing. demanding a trade means you actually tell your team to trade you. it’s up to the nuggets at that point to make a decision. ride it out and hope he changes his mind or get the best value for him now. don’t blame melo himself because the media went overboard on the melo-drama.

  5. edavidberg - Feb 19, 2012 at 10:22 PM

    How can you say Martin is being a hypocrite for telling Karl to mind his own business when Karl is the one that mouthed off and made Martin respond? That makes no sense whatsoever.

  6. cinnalocks - Feb 19, 2012 at 10:26 PM

    Hey Kurt who does your proof reading? You ought to fire them.

    • drunkenjunk - Feb 19, 2012 at 10:49 PM

      thank you, really kurt you can’t spell Anthony? Antimony, Antony? You can’t look over this for 2 seconds and see that you misspelled his name multiple times?

  7. isujames - Feb 19, 2012 at 10:36 PM

    “screw you and vinny del negro”martin yelled.

  8. a185 - Feb 19, 2012 at 11:25 PM

    Why should Anthony follow his coach and PG… coach makes the game plan which he has to follow but as the game goes along you have to adjust. Jeremy Lin isn’t half as good as Carmelo Anthony nor does he have his resumé so why in the hell should he follow him… Jeremy has to follow him. Casual fans stop go back to what you used to do, watch soccer, tennis, golf… something.

    • Justin - Feb 19, 2012 at 11:46 PM

      Us “casual” fans have watched a Carmelo lead Knicks team that was a joke to start the season crawl out of the dumbster once ‘Melo got injured and Lin took over.

      • theghostofwillisreed - Feb 20, 2012 at 7:59 AM

        those casual fans need to start paying attention then. knowledgeable fans know that the knicks had no point guard and mike d’antoni made carmelo a point-forward essentially telling him to run the offense. knowledgeable fans also know that while lin is the hot issue right now, you still need closers to win championships. casual fans love their bandwagons, knowledgeable fans know that once the hype blows over, it comes down to results and consistent execution over a larger sample size than two weeks.

  9. dirtyjerseysports - Feb 20, 2012 at 1:05 AM

    Hmm Kenyon Martin is the voice of reason? LMAO!!!! Who next Metta World Peace?

  10. mlhlite - Feb 20, 2012 at 1:11 AM

    Hater much dude, can read your objectivity. Karls a good coach but id want melo on my team

  11. mlhlite - Feb 20, 2012 at 1:34 AM

    I like the lin story and ive watch a couple of the knicks games. Im not a knicks fan but im a sports fan and the games ive watched the knicks cant shoot foe shit, im amazed they won tonight. They need melo back so lin will have someone to pass to that can score, hes got to help the double, triple teams i seen on lin tonight

  12. glink123 - Feb 20, 2012 at 2:08 AM

    The Knicks should trade Carmelo and Chandler to the Magic, for DHoward and Turkoglu.

  13. urodaddy07 - Feb 20, 2012 at 8:27 AM

    Dear Mr. A185;

    Please acquaint yourself with the game of basketball. This is a team game. The point guard handles the ball for good proportion of each possession and is therefore usually the setup guy for most offensive plays. Carmelo’s resume and skill are not in question, but are irrelevant to the argument. Lin is a better ball-handler and passer. Carmelo rarely passes so it’s inconceivable for the team to “follow him” if he only needs his team-mates on defense, which, by the way, he seems to have forgotten how to play. Please recall the Knicks record (this should be fairly fresh in our minds) while “following” Carmelo.

  14. dysraw1 - Feb 20, 2012 at 12:17 PM

    George Karl is beating a dead horse, and should not be concerning himself with players of the past. I am glad that K-mart spoke on Melo not being a selfish player only a idiot would think such a thing. Melo & J Lin will be fine. i am more concern about STAT not getting the touches he needs.

  15. khadeemw - Feb 20, 2012 at 2:28 PM

    Im not a big fan of the whole you gotta win a ring to be a great player thing, but you have to realize that Carmelo Anthony is currently the biggest compiler of stats. As good as he, Melo only got out the 1st round once. So to say Karl doesn’t know what hes talking about is slightly foolish. K-Mart who has been to a couple of finals should know what a winner is himself, but I guess he doesnt. Then again his Clippers are likely to get bounced out in the 1st round too.

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