Kemba Walker To Miss Start Of Season

Celtics point guard Kemba Walker will be sidelined until at least early January as he continues to rehab a left knee injury, according to a team press release.

After consulting several medical specialists in early October, Walker received a stem cell injection in the knee and was put on a 12-week strengthening program. He is expected to return to on-court activities early this month but he won’t be ready to play when the season begins.

Walker was hampered by left knee soreness prior to the stoppage of play in March and it continued to affect him during the restart. GM Danny Ainge admitted that team’s prized free agent acquisition in 2019 was “definitely not himself” during the playoffs.

Walker tried to gut it out and continued to play heavy minutes — he averaged 36.9 MPG in 17 postseason outings. He posted solid averages of 19.6 PPG and 5.1 APG during that span but his perimeter shooting suffered (31.0% from long range).

If Walker’s knee issues continues to linger, it could have a major impact on the team’s bottom line. He is due to make approximately $34.4MM during the upcoming season and $36MM in 2021/22. He has a $37.7MM option for the 2022/23 season.

However, Ainge believes Walker’s won’t miss too much time, Chris Forsberg of NBC Sports Boston tweets. Ainge talked about Walker on the Toucher and Rich radio show.

“I’m not worried about Kemba. He’ll be back,” Ainge said. “It’s an opportunity for Marcus (Smart), Jeff Teague, Payton Pritchard.”

Ainge feels the team has plenty of depth at that spot and doesn’t plan to pursue former Boston All-Star and current free agent Isaiah Thomas.

The press release also revealed that center Tristan Thompson suffered a minor hamstring strain during an offseason workout prior to arriving in Boston, and his availability during the first week of camp will be limited. Boston officially signed the former Cleveland big man on Monday.

Guard Romeo Langford‘s rehab from right wrist is going according to plan, the release adds. He underwent surgery on September 22nd to repair a torn scapholunate ligament in the wrist and the projected recovery time remains 4-5 months.

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20 thoughts on “Kemba Walker To Miss Start Of Season

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      Boston has been really unlucky with their PG’s in recent years. Isaiah Thomas looked like the real deal a few years ago, then they thought that Kyrie Irving was going to be great (a notion Brooklyn still hopelessly clings to). Maybe things will work out better for them with Kemba if they’re lucky.

      • Little_Dunker_45

        Yes. It stings because each time it seems the player is so close to being elite and especially as a Point Guard pulling the team together. We shall see.
        And to be fair Kyrie was great on the court but seems to have either confidence or maturity or insecurity issues that must be addressed for him to have sustained success in the NBA i.e a ring.

        • El Don

          In his last year in BOS was the first time I ever saw Kyrie playing at a real superstar level, which he raised considerably last year in BRK for the time that he was healthy.
          Shame that BOS did downgrade in the PG at the same time that they paid a lot more for said PG, which to top it up is always injured, SMH!

          • Curtisrowe

            Yeah, I mean if only Walker were as healthy as Kyrie, the guy who has averaged 48 games a year for the past three years.

            • rusty.coqbern

              Hahaha, yeah, and brags about playing his best when playoffs come around. To him it’s a blessing for fans to see him when he feels like playing hard so he saves it – that’s not a teammate; the rest of the team fought their buts off while Kyrie couldn’t be bothered to play or play at full speed. He’ll figure out how worthless of a human being he is when he’s out of Ball..

          • KnickerbockerAl

            I guess you missed Cavs – Warriors series. Cavs don’t win it without Kyrie playing like a superstar. I’m not even a Kyrie fan.

        • rusty.coqbern

          Great how? Not a great teammate when the shots are all his calls while he’s on the floor (and he takes the majority). He’s a ball hogging narcissist who still believes the earth is flat and has mole people running around in caves under our feet. Not a great thinker is Kyrie either, but it doesn’t stop him from thinking he’s a genius too.
          God, please wash these turds off this planet! (Nod to Bill Hicks) Hahaha

  1. DrSeuss69

    media overreacts over still has Smart/Teague to play PG while he recovers and 26 million

    • Little_Dunker_45

      Who is overreacting? Their star point guard who on the books for big money is injured and will miss time. How should people react? Smart is great but plays a different role on the team. He does not replace kemba…nor does Teague. This is the nba not some children’s book where u live in

      • DrSeuss69

        lol wow mr.serious business over here…celtics played without kemba/hayward for a chunk of the season and smart was great..AGAIN they have 26 million if anything

  2. Montezuma

    Boston has been most injury riddled team in the league over the last 4 years or so. That combined with terrible luck on their Memphis and Sacramento picks, man it’s crazy to think where they could be right now. This has been a perfect storm of bad luck for Boston.

    • By what standard? They’ve actually been one of the healthier teams the past 4 years in terms of games missed. I mean the injuries to IT and Hayward were big considering their projected roles but I don’t really remember them missing multiple key rotation players at the same time or bench warmers really being forced into roles that they weren’t ready for.

  3. Curtisrowe

    Walker was definitely not himself during the playoffs. It’s hard to tell what is really going on here. If he really is just finishing his 12 week strengthening program, then whatever, it was a short off season. If there is more to it, the Celtics are going to be hurting,

    • x%sure

      Walker is tailing off; it started at least by early last season. As a PG, he can just dribble down court and shoot it. But I did not see the more difficult actions… twisting, coming around screens (polar bear-ing? lol Beilein had a good idea, trying to give the maneuver a name, but polar bear?)

      We may be seein a lot of Jeff Teague. I thought Carsen Edwards would be better and predicted a lot of PT for him but he was overtaken by Waters rapidly and drowned. Metaphorically

      • Curtisrowe

        Edwards was awful last year. I don’t disagree about Walker, but if you played how he did last year, 2oppg with a PER of 20, then he is a very good third option. Only problem is he is getting paid to be a lot more than that.

  4. PutoBelga12

    Is too early to start talking about a Celtics curse? IT, Kyrie, Hayward and now Kemba? It’s a blow for the Celtics who didn’t improve much this offseason. Hopefully he recovers quicky but most importantly fully.

  5. KnickerbockerAl

    It’s nothing major. They brought him back too soon cause of playoffs. He gets his treatment and rehab. He’s back in January. You need him healthy for end of yr. Romeo needs to play mins. Now he has it. This is a big yr for Celtics. They filled their roster with needed pieces. Still have the TE they will use by TD. I see Celtics going for it all. Bucks, Heat, Celtics, Nets the East is going to be a war. Kemba is one if the good guys. I hope he’s good and gets it right. Gotta play healthy when competition is heavy man.

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