Marcus Smart excelled in his role as the Boston Celtics’ starting point guard last season after replacing Kemba Walker. shipped as part of the Al Horford trade at the start of the off-season.
Since leaving Boston, however, Walker has struggled to find a home, and now, just a year after signing a return-home deal with the New York Knicks, Walker is on the verge of becoming a free agent again – with No Team proving to be a potential landing spot for the former All-Star.
Now, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charaniawalker, who was recently traded to the Detroit Pistons as part of the three-team trade in which the Knicks acquired three prospective first-round draft pickswill stay away from the Pistons team while they continue to work out a possible buyout of his current contract.
Walker took part last season 37 games for New York, averaging 11.6 points, three rebounds and 3.5 assists per game, with 36.7% shooting from deep and 44.4% from the perimeter, Unfortunately, Walkers regularly fell out of the team’s rotation due to their limited defensive advantage.
Walker is not the same player
During his time with the Celtics Walker struggled with degenerative knee issues that led to him undergoing multiple treatments to bring him back to his former All-Star level of the game. While Walker remains an offensive weapon, he no longer possesses his elite first step and as such is far less dangerous as an offensive valve.
With subdued offensive power, Walker isn’t the same guard who used to carry the Charlotte Hornets on his back, nor is he the ideal guard to get off the bench, as his limited size and mobility make him a legitimate target on the bench defensively side of the floor.
Still, Walker continues to be an exceptional locker room presence with a wealth of experience to help bring out the next generation of point guards, and hopefully there will be a team somewhere in the league that sees value in what he brings to an off-court capacity while they at the same time believing that they can get the best version of him on the pitch. Otherwise, Walker could find his career tragically cut short.
Lakers sign Matt Ryan
Another former Celtics player has been hanging around in the free agency pool recently, but thankfully they’ve found a potential new home in the league. According to Charania, Matt Ryan, who has been impressive for Boston’s Summer League team this summerHe has signed a non-guaranteed contract with the Los Angeles Lakers for the coming season.
Ryan, 25, has one NBA game to his credit so far in his career, play five minutes of basketball for the Boston Celtics during the 2021-22 NBA seasonand hopes his perimeter shooting ability creates a path to a consistent role with the shooting-deficient Lakers.
Luckily for Ryan, a familiar face will greet him in Los Angeles, as the Lakers also recently acquired former Celtics guard Dennis Schroder after he impressed with Germany during the FIBA EuroBasket tournament.
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https://heavy.com/sports/boston-celtics/boston-celtics-kemba-walker-former-guard/ Celtics News: Kemba Walker faces uncertain NBA future