Kevin Martin, a 6-7 shooting guard who spent 12 seasons in the NBA, officially announced his retirement.
In Thursday edition of the Zanesville Times Recorder, Martin left a lengthy advertisement talking about his retirement, which also included a very generous $1,000 donation from his foundation. :
He was born in Zanesville and attended high school there before spending three years at Western Carolina. His full piece reads as follows:
Thank you, thank you, thank you. There’s not a more perfect day for me to express those feelings. There are so many ways to announce your after professional career plans. My family and close friends have known since June of the direction I wanted my life to go. Those were the toughest conversations that I have ever had but with the ultimate support I knew I was making the right decision. I was raised by two unbelievable parents, Marilyn and Kevin, that I owe the world to by preparing me to be a humble young man that could handle the responsibilities that came with being in the spotlight. A amazing little brother, Jonathan, that has taught me how to face any adversity head on and prevail. My grandparents, Maxine and Dallas, gave their first grandchild all the love and resources to focus on my ultimate unrealistic goal at the time throughout my childhood. Grandparents, Teena, Stanley, and John, I am thankful for the faith through prayers and love! And to all my family… Thank you all for instilling the most important attributes into my soul that I would have to rely on, on a daily basis. I love y’all so much! Last but most definitely not least… Now we all know I wouldn’t be writing this letter if I didn’t have the strongest of support systems that helped me through the toughest daily rigors that one could face for all those years. My wife, Jill Arnold, has been my greatest blessing and I couldn’t be more thankful to have a soulmate that changed her life to be there with such loyalty and dignity! Thank you, Tim and Joy Arnold, for raising such a beautiful woman. Jill has blessed our family with a new baby girl, Anna Capri, that has completed me.
To my community, I think the way I have always wanted to do it was on a personal level with the place that has always been there for me as I started this journey as a 18 year old kid. That place is Zanesville, OH! It was always about you! Special is just the start to describe you guys as part of my journey from day 1. Honestly, there isn’t enough pages or enough days in a year for me to name everyone that has had a positive impact in my life. Every little kid that loves basketball dreams about playing in the same league as Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant, but I know it’s the hope that others give that can only make that dream a reality. That’s where I realize I’m from a one of a kind community. I never took anything for granted, always inspiring to make a difference off the court and play at a high level because I always represented Zanesville everywhere I went in this world. I’ll always remember playing with my childhood friends, TJ Anderson, Jeremy Morgan, Andre Hodge, Brody Beauford, and Zach Sowers in the playgrounds looking to play anybody. I’ll always remember playing with the big boys from the ’95 state championship/’97 state runner teams around town while they argue after every play and never passed us the ball. We had to earn it! Those were the memories where the game of basketball took on a whole new meaning. The meaning was you better be ready to work as hard as anybody out here because nothing will ever be handed to you. That was and always will be the Zanesville way! That came true playing for Coach Scott Aronhalt when he had me playing with the JV team my junior year in the summer. Came true when I had to take the ACT 3 times to be eligible to play basketball in college (Thanks Dr. Bill William Stewart). Came true when my NBA trainer, David Thorpe, had professional players knocking me to the floor every chance they got as a skinny, 19 year old freshman. Also, came true as Coach Rick Adelman didn’t play me my rookie year. Still to this day, these are my favorite and most grateful people I have encountered during this journey. I found during those tough times, it was the proudness that I placed on my shoulders, that I had to represent this town that always made me break through! As I mentioned moments I remembered… I know I wouldn’t have made it without you all!!! This is what inspired me to come back and give hope. Thank you so much and I’m excited to see who the next kid will be to experience the professional sports world but most importantly… for them to experience the reception from our community every time they are able to come back home and give hope for the next generation!!!
In appreciation to you… The Kevin Martin Youth Foundation will be donating $100,000 to enhance the talents of our young children, on and off the sporting fields, in the Zanesville and surrounding area! Have a Happy Thanksgiving!
Martin’s last action came during a playoff game on May 12 of last season when the San Antonio Spurs lost Game 6 of the Western Conference Semifinals to the Oklahoma City Thunder. Martin recorded less than six minutes, and he hauled in two rebounds.
Over those 12 seasons, Martin averaged 17.4 points and was an elite sharpshooter for most of his career, finishing with a clip of 38.4 percent.
Unfortunately, injuries limited him during his prime. From 2006-12, Martin missed 134 games during the best stretch of his career. When he did play, not only was he a lights-out shooter, but he also had an incredible knack for drawing fouls. K-Mart averaged a staggering eight free throws a night, and he converted on 87 percent of those attempts; according to Basketball-Reference, only five players shot more on average over that stretch.
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