(From the FanPosts. pookeyguru has been here with me at Sactown Royalty since the beginning, and I appreciate his thoughts on losing Kevin Martin. -- TZ)
Kevin Martin as I wrote earlier today is one of my favorite Kings ever. Top 5 of all time. Always will be that way. It will take a lot to crack Mitch, Vlade, DC13, Speed, and Reke. Love em all. And Reke is only a rookie. But I digress. This is about Kevin Martin and what he meant to me.
To be honest I don't remember much about Kevin's rookie season. I remember Matt Barnes and Mo Evans, but I don't remember Martin. I don't remember his being left off the playoff roster in that gloomy April of '05. I remember nearly everything since. I remember his amazing 2nd year where I thought he was a multiple time All-Star in a Kings uni. HIs amazing (and badly overlooked) season in 2007 where the Dubs stole everything including Martin's well deserved MIP. (Yes I remember that.) I remember Amick Gate in 2008 where Napear talked shit about Martin implicitly, but tried to act like he wasn't. Yet, one of the enduring memories I have of Kevin remains to be this.
What galls me about this? Not the memory of it. It was great when I saw it on DVR several hours later. What galled me IS WHY I DIDN'T GO. I didn't like Artest, and it let me cloud the last opportunity (as it were) to see my beloved Kings in my new city of Seattle. I also didn't want to put money in Clay Bennett's pocket. As it turned out, a very costly mistake. Kevin not only hit the GW shot in his last game at Key Arena, but he did so with so little fanfare. I don't think fans even remember it. It still burns a hole in my heart. I don't ever regret not going to games. I will forever regret not going to this. All I had to do was take the day off. But noooooooooo, there would be other times. I missed the opportunity to crow about one of the games unusual and enticing talents in the arena where one of his more impressive games occurred. Bitter? You bet your ass.
And that is the essence of SpeedRacer to the fullest. At times when he was successful he was taken for granted. In times of great peril and distress he was tossed to the dogs as if he was a 5 cent nickel steak. Nothing he ever did was good enough; nothing he ever did was important enough. When Tyreke Evans and the younginz came about, it seemed to overshadow him. He lost that spirit, and so have I. May you live long and prosper in the oily shadows of the Toyota Center and Clutchtown Sir SpeedRacer. You will be missed.