KMart: Playoff matchup meant to be

KMart: Playoff matchup meant to be
April 23, 2013, 4:00 pm
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Martin: 'I just knew it was meant to be'

(USA Today Sports Images)

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Kevin Martin and James Harden were traded for each other right before the regular season started. They share the same belief that facing their old teams after their first year with their new teams is a thing of destiny.

"I just knew it was meant to be," Martin said on Tuesday. "We knew it was meant to be back in October."

Harden had said something similar after the Rockets' first practice in preparation for the playoffs. Harden didn't quite say he knew this was meant to be back in October, but that the match-up made him chuckle in a sense that yes, of course this would be the first-round playoff matchup.

In Martin's first year with the Thunder, he has become a key contributor off the bench. He averaged 14 points and had a career-high 42.6 three-point percentage, good enough for ninth in the league. He also had his highest shooting percentage since 2007-08.

These playoffs are Martin's first since he was a Sacramento King in 2006. And in Game One, he scored 16 points off the bench in the Thunder's 120-91 victory on Sunday night.

"It was just good to get the seven-year cobwebs off," he said with a large smile.