When I first discovered that the New York Knicks decided to wear All Black Everything to their game five battle against the Boston Celtics in the opening round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs, I immediately thought that it was in poor taste. There are, after all, funerals that, unfortunately, we all have to attend in our lives, and to have a mock funeral for the end of a basketball team’s playoff run was just a bad choice, for many reasons. You never give your opponent more reason to one to defeat you, which the Knicks did to a team that has leaders with a championship ring. Then I wondered why the Knicks, a veteran team with Tyson Chandler and Jason Kidd, who won rings two years ago with the Dallas Mavericks, would do such a foolish thing, then I got the answer: Kenyon Martin.
Kenyon Martin was signed on February 21, 2013, as an extra body for the New York Knicks before the injuries of Amar’e Stoudemire, Kurt Thomas, and Rasheed Wallace, after sitting out the entire season. Martin has obtained a reputation for not being a good locker room guy, most recently in Los Angeles playing for the Clippers, who, ironically, could have used him this season, and, according to many reports, vigorously tried to trade for the man Martin is matched up with in this series, Kevin Garnett.
Is appears that Kenyon Martin has not only influenced the Knicks off the court in a negative way, but his on-court play has suffered as well. After starting the series well, he has amassed more fouls, 14, than points, 11, and rebounds, 12, in the last three games. He also influenced 14 teammates to show up for a mock funeral. Hopefully, for New York Knicks fans, the voices of Kidd and Chandler reclaim the locker room. If not, the Knicks could have yet another disappointing end to their season.