When the Boston Celtics acquired Evan Fournier from the Orlando Magic ahead of the NBA’s trade deadline back in March, no one was more excited about playing alongside the veteran shooter than Kemba Walker.
Fournier and Walker had a handful of memorable showdowns over the years, as Kemba reminded us days after the trade was announced.
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And after scoring 32 points on 11-of-18 attempts, including 6-of-9 from behind the arc in the Celtics’ 132-92 win over the Magic, Wednesday night alongside Fournier’s 18 points (8-of-14); Kemba reminded everyone again:
He really likes having Fournier around.
“I’ve played against Evan (Fournier) for years,” Walker said after the Celtics’ win, Wednesday night. “He’s an incredible player. I think we kind of had instant chemistry. Yeah, he’s just fun to play with.”
Kemba Walker On Evan Fournier: ‘We Need Him, Big Time’
Walker says Fournier’s offense is imperative for the Celtics, and as of right now, the timing couldn’t have been any better.
“As far as Evan; it’s important. It’s important, we got to get him going,” Walker said. “He knows what he’s capable of, I know what he’s capable of. He’s going to be huge for us down the stretch, you know? We need him, big time.”
As for Kemba, after missing four straight games with an oblique injury, he drained five of his first seven attempts and tallied 12 first-quarter points that led the Celtics to a 39-27 lead, and Boston cruised from thereon.
“I felt good,” Walker said after the Celtics’ 132-96 win over the Magic. “I felt really good, actually.”
Brad Stevens On Kemba Walker: ‘The Plan’s Been Terrific For Him’
Celtics head coach Brad Stevens says the impressive scoring performance is a testament to the team resting Walker during various stretches throughout the regular season and Kemba’s work ethic.
“The plan’s been terrific for him, and I think that he has benefited greatly from his own hard work,” Stevens said when asked about Walker’s performance against the Magic. “The plan (was one) that our medical staff put together with him but his execution to it was the key to it.
“So, strengthening that knee, having those extra nights off were all part of trying to feel great when towards the end of the season it’s been challenging.”
Brad Stevens On Evan Fournier: ‘He And Kemba Really Like Playing With Each Other’
Stevens, who was asked how significant it is to see Walker and Fournier cohesively finding their offensive rhythm, also noted the instant chemistry he’s noticing between the two.
“I thought he looked really comfortable, he was engaged,” Stevens said of Fournier. “He and Kemba really like playing with each other. I think that has a chance to have good chemistry, we just haven’t seen that much yet. I think that they’ve just played against each other for so long that they’re both intrigued by that, as well.”
The Celtics take on the Chicago Bulls, Friday night before hosting a crucial two-game mini-series against the Miami Heat.