Bill Walker's Journey to the New York Knicks

Hot Stove New YorkSenior Writer IMarch 4, 2010

BOSTON - JANUARY 14:  Bill Walker #12 of the Boston Celtics takes a shot over Trenton Hassell #44 of the New Jersey Nets at TD Banknorth Garden January 14, 2009 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Celtics defeated the Nets 118-86. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

“Before his high school career ended he was the first player to attend the Adidas ABCD Camp in New Jersey three times, and won the MVP his final season, an award given out to the likes of Lebron James and Kobe Bryant.”

Bill Walker was a Top 10 high school recruit and made the EA Sports High School Boys Basketball team in 2006. He was also a teammate of current Memphis Grizzly and former first-round pick O.J Mayo. He received interest from top programs such as Connecticut, Syracuse, Texas but elected to go to Kansas State.

At Kansas State Walker averaged 16.1 points (5th in the Big 12), 6.3 rebounds and shot 46% (10th in the Big 12) in his second season. He also played alongside Michael Beasley, who was drafted second overall in the 2008 draft.

His knee injuries affected his draft stock but his talent, athleticism, and size still had scouts comparing him to Vince Carter. His leaping ability, strength, and competitiveness would have made him a first-round pick if it weren't for his knee issues.

Because of his two ACL surgeries he was a second round pick by the Washington Wizards in 2008 (47th overall) but was traded to the Boston Celtics for cash.

He was never given the opportunity to play for Boston, appearing in only 34 games over the last two seasons. However, he has showed the potential to score, averaging 18.3 points and 6.4 rebounds while shooting 47% from the field, 94% from the free throw line in 24 career games in the NBDL.

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The Knicks acquired him in the Nate Robinson trade two weeks ago, which could turn out to be a very savvy decision by Donnie Walsh. Walker has shown the ability to finish above the rim and his athleticism allows him to get to the basket consistently.

Walker started the first game of his career last night (for Wilson Chandler—out due to personal reasons) and scored a career high 22 points. This marks his second straight game of at least 21+ points as he has played 36 and 35 minutes minutes, respectively.

He is only 22 years old and showing why he drew comparisons to Vince Carter.


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