Kemba Walker and the Charlotte Hornets are heading into the 2017-18 NBA season hoping to make some noise in the Eastern Conference. Due to all of the star power leaving the East and heading West, Charlotte could very well end up being one of the top teams in the conference.
Outside of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics, there are no clear favorites in the Eastern Conference. Charlotte has put together a lot of talent, with Walker leading the way. Dwight Howard was acquired from the Atlanta Hawks this past offseason in a move that the Hornets hope will add a big defensive and rebounding presence and another prominent scorer.
Nicolas Batum will miss some time with injury, but that shouldn’t derail the Hornets too much. Walker is one of the most underrated players in the league and is hoping to prove that he belongs on the Eastern Conference All-Star team for the second year in a row.
Last season with the Hornets, Walker ended up averaging 23.2 points, 5.5 assists, and 3.9 rebounds per game. He shot 44.4 percent from the floor overall and knocked down a sizzling 39.9 percent of his three-point attempts. Walker took his game to a new level, but there is more room for him to grow.
All of that being said, what goals should be set for Kemba Walker heading into the 2017-18 NBA season?
Average 25 Points Per Game
There is still some room for Walker’s offensive game to grow. Taking his points per game average up to 25 would take him close to unlocking his full scoring potential. He is more than capable of scoring more points this season, and the Hornets could certainly use them.
Improve as a Playmaker, Average Seven Assists
While Walker is primarily a scoring point guard, he could certainly become a better playmaker for his teammates. He averaged 5.5 assists per game last season but should set his sights on averaging seven per game in 2017-18. Charlotte doesn’t have a lot of players capable of creating their own shot, which makes Walker’s playmaking ability even more important.
Continue Shooting Close to 40 Percent from Three
Walker’s perimeter shooting has become one of his biggest strengths the past two seasons. Last year, he shot 39.9 percent from behind the arc. Continuing to shoot that well from the three-point line is a major key for Walker, as it helps on the scoreboard and also forces defenses to guard him tighter, which results in much easier drives to the rim.
Take His Defense to the Next Level
As the NBA continues to see superstar point guards come out of every corner, the need for strong defensive point guards has become greater. Walker is one of the quickest point guards in the league, but there is a lot of room for his defense to get better. If Walker can become a lockdown perimeter defense, it will make the Hornets a much more dangerous team in the playoff picture.
What kind of season are you expecting from Kemba Walker in 2017-18? Are there any other goals that you would add to this list? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below!
[Featured Image by Chuck Burton/AP Images]