Friday , Jul , 16 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

K-Mart is perfect for the Nuggets

=== K-Mart is perfect for the Nuggets ===

By Warren Blatt, Sports Network NBA Editor

(Sports Network) – The Denver Nuggets got their man in a sign-and-trade deal
when they sent three future first-round draft picks to the New Jersey Nets for
All-Star forward Kenyon Martin.

“We are overjoyed to be adding a player of Kenyon’s ability,” said Denver
general manager Kiki Vandeweghe. “He is truly one of the elite power forwards
in this league and will be an asset to our team and the Denver community. This
deal could not have been made without the support and commitment from our
tremendous owner, Mr. Stan Kroenke.”

Originally selected out of Cincinnati by the Nets in the first round (first
pick overall) of the 2000 NBA Draft, Martin, who reportedly signed a seven-
year deal worth more than $90 million before being traded to the Nuggets,
averaged 16.7 points and 9.5 rebounds in 65 games for New Jersey during the
2003-04 regular season. In the playoffs, the four-year veteran posted 19.1
points and 11 boards per game in 11 contests for the Nets, who were
eliminated in seven games in the Eastern Conference semifinals by the Detroit
Pistons, who went on to win the NBA title.

“Kenyon is a great player who played a pivotal role in our success over the
past three seasons,” said Nets CEO Rod Thorn. “He is a terrific guy and
we wish him nothing but continued success in the near future.”

Martin, who has averaged 15.1 points and 7.6 boards in 283 career regular
season contests, will add toughness to Denver’s frontcourt, which already
consists of Carmelo Anthony, Nene and center Marcus Camby, who is an
unrestricted free agent but is expected to ink a deal with the Nuggets.
The All-Star forward also brings a tough defensive presence along with the
ability to run the court and play in a fast-paced offense.

The 20-year-old Anthony is coming off an outstanding rookie campaign, as he
started all 82 regular-season games for the Nuggets and averaged a team-high
21 points to go along with 6.1 rebounds and 2.8 assists. The 30-year-old
Camby checked in with 8.6 points, 10.1 boards and 2.6 blocks in 72 contests
for Denver, while Nene netted 11.8 points and grabbed 6.5 boards per game in
77 contests during the 2003-04 regular season.

The Nuggets also have an excellent point guard in 28-year-old Andre Miller.
The Utah product started all 82 games last season for Denver and finished
with averages of 14.8 points, 6.1 assists and 1.6 steals.

Denver finished 43-39 in 2003-04 and earned its first postseason berth since
1995. The Nuggets lost in five games in the first round to the top-seeded
Minnesota Timberwolves.

The 26-year-old Martin brings a lot of playoff experience to the youthful
Nuggets. Martin has played in 51 postseason contests and has participated in
the NBA Finals twice (2002 and 2003) as a member of the Nets. He owns career-
playoff averages of 18.1 points and 8.3 rebounds.

With the addition of Martin, Denver has added a player who plays with emotion
and a nasty attitude. He will excite the fans and motivate his teammates with
his style of play. Martin is a perfect fit for the Nuggets and should help
them make some exciting playoff runs in the near future.