After his BIG3 appearance in Lexington, Kenyon Martin opened up about being a Kentucky fan as a child and how he almost became a Wildcat himself.
“As a kid, you idolize Kentucky basketball,” Martin told reporters in Rupp Arena. “Rick Pitino was an iconic figure here, that’s who I wanted to play for then. He left and went to the Celtics, and then they brought in Tubby, so I decided to go to the University of Cincinnati.”
That’s a nice story and all, but there’s one glaring inaccuracy: Pitino left Kentucky in May of 1997, months after Martin’s freshman year at Cincinnati. Martin had already played in 22 games for Bob Huggins’ Bearcats before M.L. Carr was fired in Boston and opened the door for Pitino to leave “Camelot.”
But as Martin told it, he wanted to play for Pitino and ended up in Cincinnati after UK hired Tubby Smith.
Fact checking, which we rarely do here at KSR, says that’s simply not true.