For Kemba Walker, it was like strolling down the hallways and seeing everyone else stare or whisper to each other about his presence. But that is what happens when you are the “new kid” in the organization and the team’s star player as well.
Walker, who signed a four-year, $141 million max contract with the Celtics at the outset of free agency, stood out amongst his teammates Monday at Celtics Media Day as he gets acquainted to leading Boston into a new season.
“It’s just different. I just feel like the new kid in school,” Walker said. “But it’s cool. I’m looking forward to adjusting. I’m looking forward to getting to know everyone. I’m excited. I think it’s a lot of emotions all in one.”
Walker averaged 19.8 points, 5.5 assists and 3.8 rebounds per game over his eight seasons with the Charlotte Hornets along with obtaining All-Star honors each of the past three years and being named to the 2018-19 All-NBA Third Team.
Walker has been tapped to take over the role left vacant by the departure of Kyrie Irving. Walker’s play and leadership style will be in constant comparison to Irving’s this season, but that doesn’t seem to bother Walker, who finally gets to play for a team that is expected to make a deep postseason run.
“I’m sure there will be expectations just because of the organization,” said Walker, who has played in only 11 postseason games in his career. “I won’t say much about Kyrie. We have a really good team so there should be expectations. I’m very excited about that. That’s something that I haven’t had much throughout my career. I’m looking forward to trying my best to meeting the challenge.”