Report: Kemba Walker Admits Being ‘Heavily Pursued’ by Lakers in Free Agency

Ryan Ward
2 Min Read

The Los Angeles Lakers were as aggressive as any team in the league during NBA free agency last summer.

Along with their pursuit of Kawhi Leonard, the Lakers made a hard push to bring in some backcourt help. Kemba Walker recently admitted the Lakers aggressively pursued him in free agency in a recent interview.

“He began to consider other teams,” wrote Sopan Deb of the New York Times. “At first, Walker said, he was heavily pursued by the Los Angeles Lakers, the Dallas Mavericks and the team he grew up closest to, the Knicks. He considered going home.”

Ultimately, the Lakers fell short in free agency. Los Angeles was able to land Anthony Davis in a blockbuster trade, but couldn’t convince Leonard or Walker to sign with the team.

With Walker passing on the opportunity to join the Lakers, the storied franchise went with a backup plan. The team brought back Rajon Rondo and signed Avery Bradley to short-term deals to bolster the backcourt.

Although both players are past their prime and have dealt with numerous injuries over the past few years, the two veterans played a role in the team’s success this season.

The long-term future of the backcourt for the Lakers remains an issue, however. The team could explore their free-agency options once again or try to make a bold move to target another star like Chris Paul in a trade.

As for Walker, the 30-year-old guard joined the Boston Celtics in a sign-and-trade deal with the Charlotte Hornets. Walker became Kyrie Irving’s predecessor in Boston and formed a talented trio with Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown.

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Ryan is a veteran sportswriter who has covered the NBA and NFL for nearly a decade. Along with numerous exclusive interviews with professional athletes, Ryan has been credentialed by the Los Angeles Lakers since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @RyanWardLA.