UPDATE: Jan. 8, 8:36 p.m. — Walker was ejected for the first time in his NBA career mid-way through the third quarter vs. the Spurs. Here’s a video of the ejection. It was pretty weak if you ask me.
Wow. Kemba Walker ejected. That was quick. pic.twitter.com/ubktdPmJxW— Dime (@DimeUPROXX) January 9, 2020
Walker was already going to be restricted, but his night will end early. He ends with 18 minutes, scoring six points with four assists and three rebounds. The Celtics had been down big in the first half, but have since crawled back into the game a bit. Though they are trailing by 11 points as of this writing.
Kemba just got tossed by official Evan Scott for arguing an hard pick against LaMarcus Aldridge. Scott is in his first full NBA season and one of the league's youngest officials at 27. #Celtics #Spurs— gary washburn (@GwashburnGlobe) January 9, 2020
UPDATE: Jan. 8, 5:13 p.m. — Walker and Daniel Theis are both available to play.
The Celtics say both Kemba Walker and Daniel Theis are available for tonight's game against the Spurs. Walker has missed the past three games with the flu.— Tim Bontemps (@TimBontemps) January 8, 2020
UPDATE: Jan. 8, 1:47 p.m. — Walker will be on a minutes restriction.
Brad Stevens says on @ZoandBertrand that Kemba Walker will return tonight but will not play his "normal minutes."— Boston.com Celtics News (@BDCCeltics) January 8, 2020
So this makes it difficult to trust Kemba in DFS and season-long formats. I’d probably leave him on your bench for fantasy basketball tonight if he isn’t going to see a ton of minutes. In DFS his ownership will be non-existent probably, but that’s the real only upside with his ceiling capped and his price at $8,100.
UPDATE: Jan. 8, 12:56 p.m. — Walker will play vs. the Spurs, coach Brad Stevens confirmed on 985TheSportsHub this afternoon.
Brad Stevens says on @ZoandBertrand that Kemba will play vs Spurs.— Chris Forsberg (@ChrisForsberg_) January 8, 2020
With Walker back in the lineup, we should see Marcus Smart go back to the bench and into a lesser role. It’s also a value hit for Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum. But overall, the Celtics will welcome Kemba back after struggling a bit the past three games without him. I’d jump on the spread of this one while it’s low.
UPDATE: Jan. 7, 5:08 p.m. — Walker has been upgraded to questionable for Wednesday’s game vs. the San Antonio Spurs.
Kemba Walker upgraded to questionable for Wednesday's game against the Spurs. Romeo Langford (flu), Rob Williams (hip) and Vincent Poirier (pinky) all remain out.— Brian Robb (@BrianTRobb) January 7, 2020
Romeo Langford and The Time Lord Robert Williams remain sidelined. If walker can get back, it’d be a downgrade to Marcus Smart and Brad Wanamaker, plus take away usage from Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum.
UPDATE: Jan. 5, 4:42 p.m. — Walker will remain out of the lineup Monday vs. the Washington Wizards.
Kemba Walker is again OUT tomorrow against Washington.— Marc D'Amico (@Marc_DAmico) January 5, 2020
UPDATE, Jan. 4 1:33 p.m. — Walker did not travel with the Celtics for their game against the Chicago Bulls on Saturday and is not expected to play.
Was told that Kemba Walker (illness) did not travel to Chicago with the Celtics.— Adam Himmelsbach (@AdamHimmelsbach) January 4, 2020
With Walker sidelined Friday night vs. the Hawks, the Celtics struggled to close out Atlanta at home, which was a bit surprising. They were able to get the 109-106 victory but needed a last-second block on Trae Young to do so. With Kemba out, Jaylen Brown led the team with 24 points, 10 rebounds and two assists. Marcus Smart put together a solid game as well with 15 points nine assists and three steals. Those two should continue to handle the ball vs. Chicago. Enes Kanter, however, is my favorite play vs. the Bulls, who struggle against rebounding bigs.
UPDATE: Smart will start in place of Walker.
No shocker, but Marcus Smart will start in place of Kemba Walker.— Jay King (@ByJayKing) January 3, 2020
UPDATE: Walker has been ruled out for Friday night’s game vs. the Hawks.
Kemba is out with flu.— Chris Forsberg (@ChrisForsberg_) January 3, 2020
We’re still waiting on word on Brown, but he is expected to return after missing the Celtics’ last game vs. the Hornets. If Brown is back, he’s an appealing play with Walker sidelined. We should also see a decent amount of Marcus Smart and Brad Wanamaker. I think Wanamaker is a good value option at $3,900 given this game may not be close.
Kemba Walker missed practice with flu-like symptoms. Status uncertain for tomorrow.— Chris Forsberg (@ChrisForsberg_) January 2, 2020
Jaylen Brown went through the full practice with some lingering congestion from his sinus infection.
There seems to be something going around the Celtics locker room, because this is the second case of illness on the team in recent weeks. Jaylen Brown wasn’t able to play against the Charlotte Hornets because of a sinus infection and had to go to the hospital. Now, Walker is apparently dealing with a bad fever and has the flu.
Fantasy Basketball Analysis: Boston Celtics guards
With Brown out last game, Marcus Smart started in his place. I think we’ll see a similar scenario if Walker is unable to go, with Smart starting in the backcourt with Brown. Smart finished with seven points, seven assists and five rebounds against the Hornets in 30 minutes, so he’ll be a strong value play on Friday’s slate if Walker is out.
Brad Wanamaker and Semi Ojeleye should also see more time off the bench in the rotation. I’d also expect more offense to run through Brown, Jayson Tatum and Gordon Hayward if Kemba sits out.