When free agency opens up this Sunday, Kemba Walker will arguably face the biggest decision of his life. For the first time since entering the league in 2011, the three-time all-star will become an unrestricted free agent. And at 29-years old, his next decision can change the perception of his career.
If he decides to stay in Charlotte, Walker will be eligible to receive a five-year supermax extension worth up to $220.0 million from the Charlotte Hornets. While the money seems extremely attractive to the average Joe, Walker will risk the possibility of wasting his talents for one of the most mediocre teams in league history.
No disrespect to the Hornets organization, but due to their inability to draw top tier free agents as well as a demolished team salary cap, the chances of Walker playing for a championship contender in Charlotte is slim to none. And after qualifying for the postseason in two of his first eight years, it may be in Walker’s best interest to move on from the Hornets.
As one of the top point guards in the league, Walker will have several suitors requesting his services on June 30, which includes an offer from the New York Knicks, giving him the opportunity to play for his hometown. However, if Walker would like to re-establish himself as a winner while playing for a big market, then the Boston Celtics would be a perfect destination for the three-time all-star.
After a disappointing season where Boston finished well-below expectations, it goes without question that the Celtics will look drastically different at the start of the 2020 season. And due to the expected departures of Kyrie Irving and Terry Rozier, the Celtics are in desperate need of a point guard.
Similar to Irving, the Celtics will continue to have a star attraction in Bean Town who can help lead them back to their glory days. Throughout the 2019 season, Walker capped off a career year by receiving his first All-NBA honor (All-NBA 3rd Team), while averaging a career-high 25.6 points, 5.9 assists, and 1.2 steals per game. As an explosive ball handler and scorer, Walker’s game is tailor-made for the Celtics’ offense.
With his ability to score from anywhere inside the perimeter and from deep, Walker has established himself as one of the best scorers in the league throughout his eight-year career. However, what makes him a perfect fit in Boston is his skill set as a playmaker.
As the primary scoring option in Charlotte, Walker never had the opportunity to put his passing techniques on full display, and as a result, his ability to facilitate has gone unnoticed. And for Boston, the Celtics have yet to find a point guard who would embrace the role as a playmaker since the days of Rajon Rondo.
Though with Walker, the Celtics could have a mixture of Irving’s scoring capabilities and Rondo’s passing all into one. Walker will create more of an efficient offense for the Celtics and unlimited scoring opportunities for Gordon Hayward, Jayson Tatum, and Jaylen Brown playing next to the star guard.
Despite all the positivity Walker will bring on the court, his signing will give the Celtics a new voice in the locker room. It goes without stating that the biggest downfall for the Celtics in 2019 was the lack of leadership that caused a divide in the locker room. By all accounts, Walker is the perfect star who can help restore trust and chemistry within the Celtics organization.
Boston would benefit greatly from the arrival of Walker, and the former UConn star would see a rise in popularity in his career. While averaging over 23 points per game the past four seasons, Walker is by far a top tier talent in this league. Unfortunately, by playing in Charlotte his entire career, Walker has never receive the recognition he deserves.
Nevertheless, while playing for one of the league’s most prestigious teams in sports history, Walker will easily find his name among the top 10 players in the game today.
As free agency draws closer and closer each passing day, the Boston Celtics and Kemba Walker seem like a perfect match for one another. And if Daniel Ainge can find a solid stretch big replacement for Al Horford, the Celtics will be one of the most elite teams heading into the 2020 season with Walker at the helm.
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