Celtics

Ex-Celtics star Kemba Walker won't play for Knicks rest of season

Celtics

Kemba Walker's homecoming with the New York Knicks has not gone as planned, and it's unknown what his future with the team will look like beyond this year.

In the meantime, the veteran guard will not play another game for the Knicks this season, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

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Wojnarowski reported Wednesday, citing sources, that both sides "have agreed that the four-time All-Star will be sidelined for the remainder of the team's schedule, allowing him to work out in preparation for the 2022-23 season."

The Knicks confirmed Walker would shut it down for the season with the following statement:

Wojnarowski also wrote that "Walker will be on an expiring contract this summer, and that will offer an opportunity for the Knicks and Schwartz to work on trade scenarios in the offseason."

Walker has not been the same since dealing with a knee injury as a member of the Boston Celtics during the 2019-20 season. He's lost some of the athleticism and explosiveness that helped make him a tremendous scorer -- someone who averaged a career-high 25.6 points per game in 2018-19. 

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Walker was traded from the Celtics to the Oklahoma City Thunder last offseason, and then OKC bought him out. The 31-year-old veteran and New York native signed with the Knicks, giving him a chance to revitalize his career on a Madison Square Garden stage he knows well.

Unfortunately for Walker, his performance at both ends of the court has been disappointing this season. He's averaging 11.6 points and 3.5 assists, while shooting 40.3 percent from the field in a career-low 25.6 minutes per game.

 

The Knicks surprisingly made the playoffs as the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference last season. This campaign has been a disaster. New York enters Wednesday 3.5 games out of the final play-in tournament spot in the standings.