(CBS Local)– Former #1 overall pick Kenyon Martin never dreamed of making it to the NBA.
The former NBA All-Star just wanted to make it out of his small neighborhood in Dallas. The former New York Knick and New Jersey Net is still connected to world of basketball as a coach in the Big 3. K-Mart is back in New York this weekend as the Big 3 makes at stop at Barclays Center in Brooklyn on Sunday.
While Martin had many great moments in his NBA journey, the greatest one was being drafted by the Nets in 2000.
“People ask me about my career and my highs and lows, the happiest moment of my career was getting drafted,” said Martin in an interview with CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith. Just getting drafted period. My draft picture, that’s the only picture I got hanging up in my house right now. It meant so much and I’m crying shaking David Stern’s hand.”
During his time with the Nets, Martin played in two NBA Finals. While K-Mart had great success in New Jersey, people still talk to him more about his one year with the Knicks when the team won 54 games and went to the second round of the playoffs in 2013.
“I walk around the streets and the fans treat me with care of course,” said Martin. “They appreciate the way I played the game on both sides of the river. It’s rare that I played for both the Knicks and the Nets and played well. There’s always love when I come back here. It was great to play in the Garden. When I was with the Nets, I spent so much energy trying to beat those guys and be the most popular team in the area. I think I accomplished that when I was there. Playing with the Knicks is different. It’s the Knicks brand and it’s historic.”
In addition to his role in the Big 3, Martin now has the joy of watching his son Kenyon Martin Jr. play hoops at a high level. Martin Jr. decided to forgo the opportunity to play in college and will make a decision on where he will play professionally in the next week. The former NBA All-Star supports his son’s decision despite playing four years at the University of Cincinnati and graduating with a degree.
“It’s an exciting time for him. He made a decision that he didn’t want to go to school, which I understood,” said Martin. “You can get a degree if you want it. It’s not the end of the world. His profession is he wants to play basketball, there’s no college degree for that. I understand my child. We talked and that’s what he voiced. I gave him the good, the bad, the ugly and everything that comes with it. It’s my obligation to put him in the best decision and it’s on him to put in the work.”
Watch the Big 3 Saturday and Sunday on CBS.