NBA Rumors: Celtics Could Send Kemba Walker To Knicks For Julius Randle, Frank Ntilikina & First-Round Pick
Ever since the 2020 offseason, rumors have been swirling around All-Star point guard Kemba Walker and his future with the Boston Celtics. The Celtics haven’t made Walker available to trade, but there is speculation that they are planning to use him as a trade chip before the 2021 trade deadline. In a recent article, Brett Siegel of NBA Analysis Network came up with a trade idea that would send Walker to the New York Knicks.
In the proposed scenario, Boston would be sending the veteran point guard to New York in exchange for a package that includes Julius Randle, Frank Ntilikina, and a 2024 first-round pick. If the deal pushes through, Siegel believes it would help both teams improve their rosters. For the Knicks, the suggested trade would enable them to fulfill their dream of adding a legitimate superstar who could also be a great mentor to franchise cornerstones RJ Barrett and Obi Toppin.
“R.J. Barrett and first-round pick Obi Toppin are the two faces of the franchise moving forward and with Kemba as their leader, a lot of good can come out of this situation. Not only would Walker and Barrett be a great one-two punch for the Knicks’ backcourt, but Kemba is a very well respected and liked player around the NBA. A lot of high-level players would likely want to play with him, giving the Knicks plenty of leverage when it comes time for free agency.”
Meanwhile, the proposed scenario would make a lot of sense for the Celtics as it would allow them to turn an injury-riddled star into two young and promising talents in Randle and Ntilikina, who fit the timeline of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. The potential arrival of Randle in Boston would further solidify their frontcourt, giving them a quality big man who is a dominant presence under the basket, a reliable floor-spacer, and a player with good on-court vision.
This season, the 26-year-old power forward is posting incredible numbers, averaging 22.7 points, 11.3 rebounds, and 6.1 assists while shooting 47.3 percent from the field and 34.8 percent from beyond the arc, per ESPN. Randle might not have given any indication that he’s no longer happy in New York, but he likely wouldn’t mind playing for a team that has a realistic chance of contending for the NBA championship title this season.
Meanwhile, Ntilikina may not immediately fill the hole left by Walker in Boston’s backcourt, but if he continues to improve and becomes more consistent with his performance, he could be the team’s point guard of the future. Despite going through plenty of ups and downs in recent years, Ntilikina has shown huge potential in becoming an elite floor general in the league.