Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 7/21/13
According to Kevin Martin, his one-year stay in Oklahoma City proved much more than just an in-between layover. Even entering the 10th year of a pretty successful career, the Minnesota Timberwolves' free-agent shooting guard acquisition is open to absorbing any lesson available. And the Thunder gave him a lot to soak up last season. "I learned a lot in Oklahoma City," said Martin, whom the Timberwolves acquired in a July 11 sign-and-trade deal that also involved Milwaukee. "The way Kevin Durant and (Russell Westbrook) set the tone and approached the game, I feel like that's something we can do in Minnesota." The overall expectations in the Twin Cities may differ -- get to the playoffs as opposed to make it through them -- to what Martin experienced last season, the final one on his contract after a trade from Houston. But the pressure on Martin is about to ramp back up. The 6-foot-7, 185-pound Western Carolina product came off the bench in Oklahoma City. He's expected to start here. In his most efficient 3-point shooting season to date, he scored 14 points per game -- his lowest in the past seven seasons. In Minneapolis, he'll be expected to chip in somewhere around 18 a night, president of basketball operations Flip Saunders said. With the Thunder, he deferred to NBA scoring champ Kevin Durant and point guard Russell Westbrook. Aside from Kevin Love, it's on Martin to be a primary scorer in Rick Adelman's system. Not that that's anything he's unaccustomed to. "I know that I'm going to be asked and also feel great about getting right back into that role where I'm gonna have to pick it up a bit," said Martin, who shot 42.6 percent from 3 last season, good for 10th in the league. "Right now I feel, great." Martin becomes the only player to join Adelman in three separate cities during the coach's 22 years in the business. A rookie draft pick by the Kings, he spent two years with Adelman in Sacramento then rejoined him in Houston after a midseason trade in 2010. Including a rookie season where he played sparingly, Martin averages 14.6 points per game in Adelman's pass-and-move offense.
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