Kemba Walker Rumors

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#15
Kemba Walker
Kemba Walker
Position: G
Born: 05/08/90
Height: 6-1 / 1.85
Weight:171 lbs. / 78 kg.
Salary: $12,000,000
One can argue that of all the top point guards, Walker has more on him than any other. Not to say he’s better than Stephen Curry or Russell Westbrook or even Damian Lillard, but Walker doesn’t have a co-star to lean on — hence the heavy usage and the fact that he averages more in the fourth quarter during losses (8.5 points) than wins (7.3). Hornets coach James Borrego has talked about finding ways to get Walker more help to keep his body upright and fresh for the stretch run. But Walker doesn’t seem to mind the responsibility. “Nah, I’ve been playing that way for years,” Walker said. “High school, college. I’ve been getting used. I love it. I love this game. I work hard to play big minutes, to be used the way I’m used. Use me.”
But the way Walker sees it, the masses have just been late to the party. He’s always considered himself among the elite. Walker doesn’t mind the attention now, but he doesn’t want it overshadowing how good he’s been since entering the league in 2011. “I’ve been doing this. Of course, my points are higher, but that’s really it,” Walker said. “The way I’m playing, I’ve been playing like this the last couple years.” He’s aware of who’s ranked among the best and where he fits, so he does bring some extra juice for those considered the cream of the crop. “I’m a competitor, for sure,” Walker said. “I respect those guys, but when I play against them, I try my best to play well and go at them, of course. I’m just focused on winning games. That’s my thing. I’m trying to win and get to the playoffs.”
The Hornets do not have another top-50 player. Maxing out Walker would cramp their maneuverability in finding one. Walker will be 29 this summer. He’s short — a defensive liability in the wrong postseason matchup. Paying a top-20 player into his 30s as if he were a top-eight player can hamstring a franchise for years. Charlotte can’t tank with Walker on the roster. They might not be able to contend for anything with him on a max deal. Ironically, that is why Charlotte might throw the full boat at him: Without Walker, what do they have? Without Walker, there is no choice but to tank. Charlotte tanked Walker’s rookie season. It didn’t work. Small markets rarely have the stomach to tank two and three seasons, at least on purpose.
2 weeks ago via ESPN
Storyline: Kemba Walker Trade?