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Kemba Walker is “feeling good” as he nears a return, also has high praise for the Jays

Walker says he feels better than he did in the bubble and is ready to return whenever the team decides

Miami Heat v Boston Celtics - Game One Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

Boston Celtics guard Kemba Walker sounds as if he’s ready to get back on the court…whenever that may be.

Walker said his surgically repaired left knee is “feeling good” after a lengthy rehab and strengthening program. Walker was asked how it feels now vs when the came back in the bubble: “It’s different from the way felt heading into the bubble. I was feeling good in the bubble, but the time in between just wasn’t good for me. I am feeling good, but different. Better than the bubble.”

Walker went on to talk about the Celtics plan for him to regain strength in the knee and to ramp back up to playing. He said he’s not going to rush anything, but was clear he’s ready when the team says he can play: “I’m feeling good. Whenever the time comes, you know?”

When asked for his feelings on how the team has played without him, Walker first called out Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum: “I feel good about the team. Especially our two superstars in Jayson (Tatum) and Jaylen (Brown).” He then had praise for Marcus Smart and his approach to running the team, before saying the young Celtics have been ready when their name is called.

As for himself, Walker said he just wants to “bring a little leadership to the team. Bring that juice. That little something extra. Bring that spark.”

Walker said the Celtics all regularly interact on a group chat and that Jayson Tatum and Robert Williams, along with other COVID-impacted teammates, are “feeling well and those around them too.”

At one point, Walker was asked for his thoughts on the Brooklyn Nets acquiring James Harden, and he turned it into praise for the Celtics young duo of Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum. Walker said: “I’ll start with JB (Jaylen Brown) and JT (Jayson Tatum)…they’ve been killing it. Taking their games to a different level. I see those guys in the gym. I see it up close. That’s what makes me their biggest fan. I see the behind the scenes. I see the work they put in. That’s what’s exciting for me. Those guys just word hard, man. That’s what I love most about them. Their work ethic is second to none.”

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