Kemba Walker Reveals Knicks Were 'Very Serious' Contenders in Free Agency

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorAugust 7, 2020

Boston Celtics' Kemba Walker (8) takes the ball down the court during an NBA basketball game Friday, July 31, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis, Pool)
Ashley Landis/Associated Press

The New York Knicks were connected to superstar free agents before the NBA's 2019 offseason, but they could not land any of them despite clearing the necessary cap space.

They were apparently on the short list of at least one star, though.  

Kemba Walker, the four-time All-Star point guard who joined the Boston Celtics in 2019 after eight years with the Charlotte Hornets, said the Knicks were "very serious" contenders for his services:

The Ringer @ringer

Was there ever a chance @KembaWalker would play for the Knicks? Yes! He explains what happened to @CC_Sabathia and @RyanRuocco on the @R2C2 podcast. https://t.co/U82fUFFul4

"To be honest, yes. Yes, very serious. Very," Walker said on The Ringer's R2C2 podcast with Ryan Ruocco and CC Sabathia. "... Before Boston actually came along, the Knicks was one of my top priorities, actually, because I was thinking they were gonna get another player, but it didn't work out."

Walker added the Knicks were "definitely a priority at one point."

The ex-UConn star eventually headed to Boston after agreeing to a four-year, $141 million deal. He's averaged 20.8 points and 4.8 assists for the 45-23 C's, who are third in the Eastern Conference and headed for the playoffs. It's worked out well for Walker, who has a good chance to win a playoff series for the first time in his career.

The Knicks finished their season with a 21-45 mark, missing the playoffs for the seventh straight time.