Kevin Martin and his personal coachPosted by Inside Hoops
The Sacramento Bee (Sam Amick) reports on Kings player Kevin Martin and his individual coach David Thorpe: As NBA salaries have skyrocketed over the past 20 years, more players have hired individual coaches. The salary cap, $6.2 million in the 1987-88 season, was $55.6 million last season, with the average individual salary $5.2 million. Martin is among the many who reflect the change, having signed a five-year, $53 million extension last summer. As a result, most players have embraced a reality that they are each individual corporations, mini-companies who are more willing to invest in their own brand than ever. Thorpe, Martin’s behind-the-curtain coach since the summer after his freshman season at Western Carolina, estimates 10 to 25 percent of NBA players rely on outside consultants/coaches. Some players spend as little as $10,000 in a summer for detailed offseason workouts. Others employ a full-time individual coach who lives in their adopted home city and travels to away games for what often is a low six-figure salary. To varying degrees, the goal is finding a qualified coach who can provide the sort of one-on-one instruction NBA teams often can’t. While Thorpe and Martin declined to discuss the details of their arrangement, it is difficult to argue with the success of their pairing. Thorpe, 43, is a coach who chose the alternative route in his late 20s, opting to train players individually after coaching high school basketball in Florida and turning down offers from the college ranks.