RAPTORS: Is the way to Kyle Lowry’s heart through his stomach?

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Calling Kyle Lowry: A Toronto restaurateur wants to give you free chicken for life.

And not just any chicken, either, but Portuguese churrasqueira chicken, and quite possibly the best in the city.

If the way to a man’s heart really is through his stomach, then Rui Martins, owner of Martins Churrasqueira & Grill House, might be the person to get Kyle Lowry to re-sign with the Raptors.

The owner of two hugely popular Martins Churrasqueira Portuguese restaurants in the city has offered free chicken for life to Lowry if he’ll just continue with the Toronto basketball team.

Martins put up a huge billboard announcing his offer at Yonge and Dundas Sts. earlier this week, and he’s going back to Dundas Square at the end of the week to do it all again.

The man means business.

“We’re planning to go back to Yonge and Dundas on Friday. Another billboard is going up. And we’ll hand out sandwiches,” said Martins on Tuesday afternoon.

And yet another huge billboard will go up over the Gardiner Expressway on Friday. Martins is hoping to make a surprise announcement about the Scotiabank Arena that day.

The billboards and all the fanfare combine his love of basketball (and Lowry) with his passion for Portuguese food and the restaurants that were started by his father.


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He found a way to put the two together in a campaign, with help from the marketing team at ADZ World.

“The two-year anniversary of the championship just passed and Lowry’s contract is coming up, and we want the guy to stay,” he said.

“I’m just doing my part!”

It’s been a rotten year for the restaurant business, but Martins is happy that patio season is happening, especially as the restaurantat Rogers Rd. and Old Weston has a huge patio.

They’ve been doing brisk business since re-opening on Friday.

Martins started working in the restaurant as a kid, helping his father. As of July 1, he marks 12 years in the Portuguese food business.

“I love our competitors, but we make the best Portuguese chicken in the city. That’s what it is,” said Martins.


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“That’s our slogan: Someone’s got to be the best! We’re certainly the first to take five billboards saying so.”

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The restaurant started in 1992, and now he and his brother are taking it to the next level, said Martins.

“Our goal is that Kyle Lowry hears about this and sees the billboards. And that we hear back from him,” he said.

“He really is the legend of Toronto. I want him to stay.”


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