Celtics

Report: LeBron James texts Kevin Durant about joining him with Lakers

Report: LeBron James texts Kevin Durant about joining him with Lakers

So, if the Lakers can't land Kawhi Leonard (hello, Boston?) in order to help lure LeBron James to Los Angeles, is Kevin Durant the backup plan?

ESPN's Stephen A. Smith reports that James texted Durant about joining him with the Lakers. 

Later Thursday, Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com shot down that report, and that James' move to L.A. was dependent on Leonard.

Now, LeBron's impending free agency has been well chronicled and he faces a deadline Friday to let the Cavs know if he'll opt out. Durant also holds a $26.25 million player option for next season. He told the Athletic back in March he'd be staying with Golden State when asked if he was 100 percent certain he'd be back with the Warriors. 

Here's a theory on what LeBron's pitch to Durant would be, via Dan Feldman of NBCSports.com's Pro Basketball Talk:

Durant was roundly criticized for joining a ready-made championship team when he went from the Oklahoma City Thunder to Golden State in 2016. Would starting from scratch - with Paul George as part of a Big Three - be more satisfying? 

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How Tremont Waters fared for Maine Red Claws vs. Lakeland Magic

How Tremont Waters fared for Maine Red Claws vs. Lakeland Magic

With Tacko Fall out due to a toe injury, Tremont Waters was the center of attention for the Maine Red Claws on Thursday night.

Unfortunately for Maine, Waters was unable to propel them to victory as they fell to the Lakeland Magic, 106-103.

It was a rather inefficient day for Waters, as the Boston Celtics rookie had 14 points on 5-for-17 shooting to go along with 11 turnovers.

LIVE stream the Celtics all season and get the latest news and analysis on all of your teams from NBC Sports Boston by downloading the My Teams App.

He did provide a few nice highlights, though, which you can watch below:

With Waters struggling, it was Bryce Brown leading the way for the Red Claws with 27 points and 5 rebounds.

Waters and the Red Claws will look to bounce back Saturday at 7 p.m. with a home matchup against the Erie Bayhawks.

Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Rockets-Celtics, which begins Saturday at 7:30 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live. You can also stream on the MyTeams App.

Kemba Walker explains keeping No. 8 to honor Kobe Bryant: 'We want to keep his legacy going'

Kemba Walker explains keeping No. 8 to honor Kobe Bryant: 'We want to keep his legacy going'

Whenever Kemba Walker looks down at the No. 8 on his jersey, he'll be reminded of the Mamba Mentality.

While others in the NBA switched their jersey numbers in the wake of Kobe Bryant's tragic death, Walker instead decided to honor the Los Angeles Lakers legend by keeping his No. 8. The Boston Celtics guard spoke with ESPN's Rachel Nichols about what it means to wear that number going forward.

"Now, that number means even more. So every time I step on the court, I just want to give 100 percent for him," Walker told Nichols. "That's my goal for the rest of the year and for the rest of my career."

LIVE stream the Celtics all season and get the latest news and analysis on all of your teams from NBC Sports Boston by downloading the My Teams App.

In the immediate aftermath of Bryant's passing, Walker considered a number change. Evidently, he decided the best way for him to honor Bryant was to continue wearing No. 8 while putting 100-percent effort into every game, just as Kobe would.

"I had a talk about it with some close people in my circle," Walker said. "I definitely thought about giving it up but then I thought, I think Kobe would want me and allow me to wear it. We want to keep his legacy going. I know of a few of us that's kept it. We're all just going to go out there and do what we can to play as hard as possible for Kobe."

Watch below:

In 46 games this season, Walker has averaged 21.8 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 5.0 assists while earning his fourth All-Star selection.

A knee injury has kept Walker out of commission for the last few games, but the Celtics are hopeful they'll have him back in the lineup sooner rather than later.

Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Rockets-Celtics, which begins Saturday at 7:30 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live. You can also stream on the MyTeams App.