Kemba Walker released from hospital rejoins Celtics to travel home to Boston

Kemba Walker released from hospital rejoins Celtics to travel home to Boston

DENVER — Boston Celtics guard Kemba Walker was released from a Denver hospital late Friday night and cleared to fly back with the team on Saturday after being evaluated for concussion-like symptoms. 

Walker had been stretchered off the court following a scary collision with teammate Semi Ojeleye during Friday’s game against the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center. He will be re-evaluated on Saturday in Boston.  

Celtics coach Brad Stevens said after Friday’s game that initial scans on Walker returned encouraging results and the team was hopeful that Walker avoided a more serious neck injury.

Walker had his head down as he chased a rebound and hit Ojeleye’s stomach as the forward started running the opposite way up the court. Walker immediately crumpled to the ground and rolled onto his left side as trainers rushed to check on him.

Stevens said Walker’s disorientation was concerning while Jaylen Brown noted, "The look in [Walker’s] eyes made everybody a little bit uneasy.” Stevens visited Walker in an ambulance at halftime where Walker deemed himself “fine" and Stevens said he appeared in “decent spirits.”

The game was delayed more than six minutes as medical personnel immobilized Walker, moved him to a stretcher, and took him from the court. Concerned Celtics teammates gathered around Walker as he was being tended to and the Pepsi Center went eerily quiet.

The Celtics announced in the third quarter that Walker had been diagnosed with concussion-like symptoms and was being transported to the hospital for further evaluation.

The team said further updates would be provided as appropriate.

NBC Sports Boston’s Kyle Draper reported that Walker’s eyes were open and he was blinking as he was wheeled off the court and trainers could be seen talking to Walker throughout the process of being immobilized.


And ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that early indications are that Walker did not suffer a significant injury in the collision.

As paramedics wheeled a stretcher onto the court, an emotional Ojeleye could be seen leading teammates, including Grant Williams, Enes Kanter, Jaylen Brown, and Carsen Edwards, in prayer next to Walker.

It was just over two years ago that Ojeleye did the same after teammate Gordon Hayward suffered a gruesome ankle injury in Boston’s 2017-18 opener in Cleveland.

Walker had been playing at an All-Star level this season, averaging 22.6 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 4.8 assists over 33.8 minutes per game. He was a big part of Boston’s 11-3 start that has them near the top of the Eastern Conference over the first five weeks of the season.

Ojeleye filled Walker’s void on the first unit to start the second half.

After the game, Brad Stevens provided an update on Walker's condition saying that the exams Walker went through at halftime "yielded good results."

"All of the scans, the stuff he went through at halftime, yielded good results, but we haven't heard anything since," Stevens said. "I saw him in the ambulance at halftime that took him to the hospital. He had his wherewithal and [was] in pretty decent spirits."

And Jaylen Brown weighed in on Kemba's injury and touched on his own experience with a scary injury in a postgame interview.

"Obviously, our thoughts are with him, make sure his health is prioritized and stuff like that," Brown said. "I've been through a similar injury that gives everybody a little bit of a scare. To support is what's important. Yeah, our prayers and our energy are definitely with him today."

BLAKELY: The potential short-term impact of Kemba's injury>>>

Don’t miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Kings, which tips off Monday at 7 p.m. ET with Celtics Pregame Live, then Mike & Tommy have the call of the game at 7:30 p.m. You can also stream the game through the MyTeams App.

Enes Kanter eats marshmallows off a treadmill in hilarious TikTok video

Enes Kanter eats marshmallows off a treadmill in hilarious TikTok video

If you've been couped up in your home during the COVID-19 pandemic, chances are you've struggled to come up with ways to keep yourself entertained.

Enes Kanter doesn't appear to be having that problem, however.

The Boston Celtics big man has been posting some hilarious videos on TikTok recently, but his latest may take the cake. Kanter spent some of his time in quarantine lining up some mini marshmallows on a treadmill and attempting to get all of them into his mouth.

Bonus points for using the Super Mario 64 soundtrack. Let's just hope the treadmill was wiped down beforehand.

Boston athletes have been all over TikTok since the sports world was put on hold. Boston Red Sox left fielder Andrew Benintendi and Celtics rookie Tacko Fall, in particular, have made some notable videos recently.

Kanter discussed what he's been up to during his quarantine in the latest episode of The Enes Kanter Show. Subscribe and listen here.

It's a matter of when, not if, Jaylen Brown will be an NBA All-Star

It's a matter of when, not if, Jaylen Brown will be an NBA All-Star

BOSTON -- We should have seen this coming from Jaylen Brown. 

It’s not like he didn’t clue us in to how he was built differently than most players coming into the NBA. 

His first NBA start came against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, a game in which Brown showed absolutely no nerves, anxiety or fear of James as he went on to score a then-career-high 19 points in what was his fifth game as a pro. 

From there, Brown continued to show flashes of being an above-average talent, displaying an innate ability to successfully transition to whatever role he’s cast to play. 

With the NBA season at a standstill now, it provides us an opportunity to take in what Brown has done thus far. 

More significantly, it allows us to take inventory on what Brown’s body of work thus far tells us is on the horizon. 

The 23-year-old Brown is on course to establish himself as an All-Star whose strength lies in his versatility to impact the game at both ends of the floor. 

This season, Brown is averaging 20.3 points per game, joining teammates Jayson Tatum and Kemba Walker as part of the only trio of NBA teammates this season with each averaging at least 20 points per game. 

Of that threesome, Brown’s inclusion is the most surprising when you consider it wasn’t a given that he would start, let alone drop 20 points a night, at the start of the season. 

A legit case could be made that Brown should have been an All-Star this season, with some surmising a top-two record by the Celtics prior to the break would have been enough to get him in along with Kemba Walker and Jayson Tatum. 

But it’s fitting that Brown’s time to shine will have to wait. 

Because on many levels, that’s been the narrative surrounding his NBA career. 

And while it would have certainly deterred some and disappointed others, it only drove Brown to continue working on his game, proving his naysayers wrong - including those who booed Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck when he announced that Boston had selected Brown with the No. 3 pick in the 2016 NBA Draft. 

“Oh, I remember,” Brown told NBC Sports Boston recently. “I definitely remember.”

But instead of dwelling on what has happened, Brown is more locked into what the future holds for both him and the Celtics. 

“Just keep getting better, keep grinding, keep working on all parts of my game,” he said. “That’s what I’ve done, to get where I’m at. So why stop now?”