Celtics Considering Erick Dampier
By Gary Washburn
Globe Staff / December 4, 2012
Kenyon Martin remains a free agent, looking to return to the NBA, but his agent told the Globe that the 6-foot-9-inch veteran forward has expanded his list of teams as the regular season moves into its second month.
Agent Andy Miller, who also represents Celtics center Kevin Garnett, said he has not had a conversation about Martin with Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge since July. The Celtics are believed to be seeking a rebounding big man. Coach Doc Rivers called the team “soft” last week; they have been outrebounded in all but four of 17 games this season.
“We’ve done a thorough analysis of the marketplace,” said Miller, “and at this stage, Kenyon is obviously biting at the bit for an opportunity to get back in and show his wares. So we’ve broadened our scope from where we were originally, and that was obviously on the heels of free agency opening up. We wanted to be with a playoff-bound team and have a significant role.”
Martin, 34, last played with the Los Angeles Clippers, and had a difficult relationship with coach Vinny Del Negro. That may have something to do with him remaining unsigned.
“At this stage, I think Kenyon’s perspective is more of if people are questioning certain aspects of my game or me personally that I just want an opportunity to show that all of these critics and naysayers are wrong. We’ve widened the net of this and had discussions on that level.
“Be that as it may, we’ve had absolutely no conversations with the Celtics. They’ve not reached out at all. If there with issues with concerns regarding his commitment as far as how focused and how passionate he is about playing and competing with his team, quite frankly, my phone is working.”
Martin is one of many veterans — including Mike Bibby, Gilbert Arenas, Erick Dampier, and Troy Murphy — waiting for another NBA chance. According to an NBA source, the Celtics have considered bringing in Dampier for a look.
Additional roster spots may open on Jan. 10, the deadline for all contracts to be guaranteed.
“A lot of teams are waiting to have clarity as far as rosters are concerned,” Miller said. “I think that things will be sorted out here within the next few weeks. We’ll have our direction and lock in, I’m confident of that.”
Martin played 42 games last season for the Clippers, averaging 5.2 points and 4.3 rebounds in 22.4 minutes. He played in all 11 playoff games. He was once one of the game’s most athletic players, before having microfracture surgery on both knees.
“I don’t think anyone would question his capabilities as far as his physical abilities,” Miller said. “When it gets down to it, you have to analyze a player’s toughness, physicality, and ability to defend based upon how opponents perform against him.”
Gary Washburn can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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