Boston Celtics To Rest Kemba Walker For Playoffs?
Will the Boston Celtics rest Kemba Walker for the playoffs? His recent knee issues make that a distinct possibility.
Heading into the All-Star Break, Walker’s knee was a known problem but not a notable point of concern. Coming out, it is suddenly a huge red flag.
This past week, Walker had fluid drained from his knee. As a result of the procedure, he missed Friday’s showdown against the Minnesota Timberwolves – Boston’s first outing since All-Star Weekend.
While announcing Walker’s procedure on Friday, head coach Brad Stevens acknowledged that the team did not realize quite how severe the situation with Walker’s knee was. If they had, he likely would have missed last Sunday’s big All-Star game.
On Sunday, the Celtics are set to take on the Los Angeles Lakers. Although this is obviously an important game on a number of levels, it does not appear as though Boston is in any rush to bring Walker back to the fold.
Kemba Walker is talking with staff about possibility of resting his knee in preparation for playoffs: “They’re putting it in my mind. I haven’t really had to do that much over the years and think like that over the years. So it is (a possibility).”
— Mark Murphy (@Murf56) February 22, 2020
“The only person we held back on (in practice) was Kemba,” he said.
“Just because of all the time that he’s been on the court, so we’re just going to continue to be careful with that.”
Because Walker was always such a focal point for the Charlotte Hornets offensively and defensively, he never really had the opportunity to rest for the playoffs before. Moreover, without him, the Hornets never had a chance at the postseason anyway – so as a member of that team he had to play.
The same is not true this time around with Boston. On this team, Walker can comfortably sit for a while and wait for the postseason to roll around.
“I haven’t really had to do that much over the years and think like that over the years,” he said of sitting in anticipation of the postseason.
So far this year Walker is averaging just under 22 points per game, as well as five assists per outing.
At the moment, all signs point to him being out for Sunday’s game against the Lakers. A final ruling on that should come down at some point within the next day.