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Kemba Walker solo smile Christmas Day

Kemba Walker solo smile Christmas Day

Kemba Walker‘s return to the Knicks starting lineup has been a much-needed spark on offense. After scoring 44 points in Thursday’s loss to the Washington Wizards, Walker recorded the first triple-double in franchise history on Christmas Day.

The Bronx-born guard tallied 10 points, 12 assists, and 10 rebounds to become the seventh player in NBA history to have a triple-double on Christmas. He joins Draymond Green (2017), Russell Westbrook (2013), LeBron James (2010), Billy Cunningham (1970), John Havlicek (1967), and Oscar Roberston (1960, 1961, 1963, 1967). After the Knicks 101-87 win over the Atlanta Hawks, Walker spoke about the special game.

“It was amazing, it was amazing, those are moments you dream about you know,” Walker said. “It’s kind of hard to put into words to be honest, but it was special just to be home with that New York on my chest. I’m a New York City kid, born and raised.”

Walker was asked about getting his tenth rebound in the fourth quarter to secure the tripl-double, saying that it was a challenge to get to double-digit rebounds.

“Everybody kept telling me about it, I wanted to get it, they wanted me to get it,” Walker said. “But when you’re in the heat of the game, it’s tough. Guys they’re not looking, a lot of the times guys thought that I was the opponent. So I was trying to get that thing though. I was just talking about it, throughout the whole game rebounds were just coming to me, the ball would so happen to be there and I’d just grab it. On my ninth one, that ball was not trying to find me, but I did what I could and I was able to get it.”

The 31-year-old then spoke about where this moment ranks in his career, adding that playing in front of the home crowd on Christmas will always be special.

“This is up there, this is up there,” Walker said. “This is only my second time playing on Christmas Day. But definitely a very special Christmas, definitely a very special moment to be playing at home in New York, crowd going wild, it was fun.”

Walker was removed from the rotation completely towards the end of November and did not play in 10 games until he started on Dec. 18 against his former team, the Boston Celtics. He spoke how the time on the bench has fueled him for this recent comeback.

“I’m over it,” Walker said. “It don’t matter anymore at this point you know. I just take it as a blessing you know, I think it was a blessing in disguise to be honest. God just works in mysterious ways man. He’s blessed me, he’s helped me stay humble, grounded, and he just got me through a tough situation.

“I just continue to work and you know, time goes on and guys go down, and I’m back. First game against my old team I’m back in the starting lineup and the rest is history from there. Everything happen for a reason man.”

The Knicks have been dealing with a number of players in and out of health and safety protocols over the last week, giving Walker a second chance in the rotation. He’s certainly taken advantage of the opportunity, proving he still deserves to get on the court.