Report: Kemba Walker headed to Knicks after agreeing to Thunder buyout

·2-min read

Kemba Walker is ready to start a new chapter with his hometown New York Knicks. 

The Bronx native has reportedly agreed to a buyout with the Oklahoma City Thunder, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, and plans to sign with the Knicks once he clears waivers. 

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Walker, 31, was traded by the Charlotte Hornets before the 2019-20 season, landing with the Boston Celtics in a sign-and-trade deal. Walker and the Celtics agreed to a four-year, $141 million deal, but he would spend only two of those years in Boston. 

The Celtics traded Walker to the Thunder in June in exchange for big man Al Horford and Moses Brown. Oklahoma City took him with the goal of flipping him, but with two years and $74 million left on his deal, Walker's trade market was severely limited. The details of the buyout aren't immediately known. 

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We also don't know any details of the forthcoming contract between Walker and the Knicks, but his presence will only make an enticing New York team even better. He'll solidify their backcourt and take the pressure off of Julius Randle as well as Derrick Rose, the bencher who ended up in the Knicks' starting lineup during the playoffs. 

If the Knicks' first-round playoff lost proved anything, it's that they needed more playmakers than just Randle. Walker, a four-time All-Star, can be that guy — if he's healthy. Due to recurrent knee issues, he missed 29 games during the 2020-21 season, including the first 11 of the season and several during the playoffs.

Walker's home court will now be Madison Square Garden, which happens to be the site of his positively legendary step back with UConn during the NCAA tournament in 2011.

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Now, Walker has the chance to make many more highlight plays at the Garden.

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