Boston Celtics guard Kemba Walker didn't play in their game against the Phoenix Suns on Saturday due to a knee injury. Walker informed team doctors last Friday about his condition and underwent an MRI. His MRI results didn't show anything wrong, and Celtics Coach Brad Stevens believes that Walker will not be gone for long.
The Celtics lost to the Suns 123-119 without Walker. This season, he averages 22.1 points, 4.9 assists, and 4.0 rebounds for Boston. It is his first season with the Celtics after his contract ended with Charlotte. He averaged 19.8 points with Charlotte (both Bobcats and Hornets). In his last season with them, he was averaging 25.6 points a game.
According to Yahoo Sports, The 29-year-old Walker is starting to show his age. He is a historically reliable player, missing only six games for Charlotte since 2015. Last year, he played all 82 regular-season games for the Hornets. But this season, he already missed five games with Boston. He missed games due to the flu and a minor neck injury late last year.
Walker is supposed to fill the role of Kyrie Irving and Al Horford for the Celtics after losing them to free agency. To everyone's surprise, that role is being taken up by young gun Jayson Tatum.
Tatum had a double-double in their loss against the Suns. He scored 26 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. Marcus Smart, filling in for Walker, had a whopping 37 points. Tatum is only in his 3rd year as an NBA player and is already averaging 21.2 points and almost 7 rebounds this season.
The Celtics are doing well this year. Currently, they are in fourth place in the Eastern Conference with a 27-14 record. That is roughly the same as last year's performance. They lost to the top-seeded Milwaukee Bucks in the second round.
Early this January, Walker also missed three games. The Celtics won two out of three games without him. In the first game he missed for the Celtics against the Sacramento Kings late last November, the Celtics barely won 103-102. Losing Walker cost the Celtics 2 of their 14 losses for the season.