Kings Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Sacramento Kings and the NBA.

September 13, 2007
Go, Speedracer, go! We have a winner in Martin nickname contest

Alas, I have returned to conclude the Kevin Martin nickname game. To the one naysayer in the bunch who found this mini-event sophomoric - Jim in Sacramento, you know who you are - it's the offseason, so cut us a break, would ya?

This is a one-man voting committee, so feel free to dispute or agree with the results.

Drum roll please ...

"Speedracer" - Credit Tom Ziller of

Think "The Chosen One" (LeBron James), "Starbury" (Stephon Marbury) or "The Matrix" (Shawn Marion). Names that define a guy's persona and just fit. Martin isn't just fast, he's "Speedracer" fast, both off the dribble and especially going end-to-end.

It's that sort of speed that has resulted in one of his signature moments (the buzzer-beating pretzel layup against San Antonio in 2005 playoffs). The best part is there is a backstory to the name that doesn't need to be known for the name to work, that being the tie-in to the Martin story I wrote when he was a rookie (read below). It works on its own and has some depth in meaning, which I like.

The runner-up in terms of using the speed theme goes to Mr. Ghymoney (his on-line name) for his entry of "Blur Light Special (playing off K-Mart name) and another quality idea from Ghymoney of "Quik Mart."

But with "Speedracer", the comic book aspect fits in with Martin's relative youth and - here's the capper - the little guy's helmet has an "M" on it. It comes with a catchy little diddy that could be played at Arco for those many Martin moments.

"Go Speedracer, go!"

- Sam Amick

September 13, 2007
Other Martin nickname ideas

"K-Money": This one already has momentum, as I'm told a bunch has been calling Kevin Martin "K-Money" for some time. Yes, as a handful of "K-Money" promoters argued, it fits. Martin is money from all over the court, it uses his initials and he just signed a deal for a whole lot of money. But "Swingers" - the movie where the line "You're so money" gained a new level of pop culture fame - is 11 years old, and the old-school sports fan in me doesn't want to be reminded how much money these guys are raking in and how it affects the game. You might as well call him Kevin "Ka-Ching" Martin?

"Flair Martin": This one actually works in a lot of ways, because Martin has plenty of flair and Air Jordan was his childhood idol. His bedroom walls in Zanesville, Ohio, were covered with Jordan posters, and I remember meeting Martin in his rookie season when he was dressed all in black and red Jordan garb. But his game just isn't ready for any Jordan comparisons.

"K-Marvelous": A gentleman who handles marketing for some Kings players tells me this one will be on T-shirts and other souvenirs soon. But other than Jerry Reynolds, who apparently dropped this one during a telecast, who actually says "marvelous"? While it's meaning is a positive it's also too vague, and I've decided I should have enacted a three-syllable rule as it takes too long to roll off the tongue. I vote no.

"Special K": Neither bad nor new. This name has been used in plenty in Kings telecasts, I believe, and is a bit catchy. "Special" is far better than "marvelous," but I was a Cheerios kid so I can't relate to the actual cereal.

"K-Boxer, a.k.a. Jockless": Spencer in Sacramento writes that Martin's penchant for playing in boxer shorts should be honored with this nickname. The info was revealed a column by Marty Mac on Feb. 2, 2006, when Martin said he hadn't worn old-fashioned underwear "since I got out of the Superman underwear."

- Sam Amick

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