Kemba Walker’s time in Boston is reportedly coming to an end.
According to Farbod Esnaashari from Bleacher ReportWalker and the Celtics are likely to move forward with their relationship this offseason in a mutual agreement between both parties.
Former Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge was reportedly set to drop Walker in his first year at point guard in Boston, Esnaashari adds. Ainge sought to trade Walker for Jrue Holiday, who is now with the Milwaukee Bucks.
Esnaashari says a source close to Walker said he was hurt by Boston’s efforts to trade him, which created a rift in his relationship with Ainge.
Walker is scheduled to make $ 36 million next season, which will make the trade difficult. According to Athletic’s Jared Weiss, multiple front office sources say Walker has negative business value, meaning the Celtics will need to separate from other assets in order to move him.
However, teams that need veteran points will control Walker’s situation. According to Esnaashari, the New York Knicks may be among the teams interested in acquiring him. The Dallas Mavericks may also be willing to negotiate with disgruntled big man Kristaps Porzingis in a deal for the veteran point guard.
Walker reportedly wants to be moved to a winning team and, more specifically, to a team that he could positively impact. However, his situation will be affected by free agents Kyle Lowry, Dennis Schroder and Mike Conley.
Walker has spent the past two seasons in Boston, averaging similar numbers to his previous eight seasons with the Charlotte Hornets. The 31-year-old Celtics’ career will likely end with an average of 19.9 points, 3.9 rebounds and 4.8 assists per game.
It’s unclear how Boston plans to replace Walker. Bradley Beal and Damian Lillard could be available through the exchange, but both could very well remain in their current markets.