In a non-traditional season, many of the leagues rookies are having to learn the game on the fly and Charlotte Bobcats guard Kemba Walker is no exception, but the former UConn star is working hard to get acclimated to the league.
“It’s a different ball game,” Walker told HOOPSADDICT.com. “Guys are bigger, faster and stronger. We have the 24-second shot clock, do things are just moving a little faster for me.”
Walker didn’t look amazing in his first preseason game, but he did show the willingness to win that made him such an amazing college player. Despite connecting on only four of his 13 shots, Walker led all scorers with 18 points and he played a big part in helping Charlotte maintain the lead in the fourth quarter to squeak out a 79-77 victory.
The most impressive part of Walker’s game was his ability to get to the free throw line as he did most of his damage from the charity stripe, connecting on nine of 11 attempts.
In his second game, Walker still struggled from the field (4-11) but still showed flashes of his athleticism.
The rookie admitted he will take the short preseason as a learning experience.
“I feel good out there,” Walker said. “It’s a quick learning process for me. I just have to take this one and learn from it. All I can do is try my best and continue to get better.”
One adjustment Walker will have to face is going from being one of the biggest stars in college basketball to coming off the bench in Charlotte. Although he will be serving as D.J. Augustin’s back up, Walker seems humble and is eager to help the franchise anyway he can.
“I’m coming off the bench so I pretty much know my role,” Walker said “I’m going to score when I can, bring energy and just play hard. That’s really what I have to do to help this team. “
It’s obvious that Walker has the physical tools to be a solid NBA player. With a decent mid-range jump shot and excellent speed driving to hole, Walker will have no problem scoring. His leadership skills might also come in handy and Walker appears to have the mindset to take his game to the next level.
“I have to get better at making everyone around me better, and making open shots when I can, and be a better decision maker,” Walker said. “I think if I work on those things I’ll be pretty good.”
Walker and the Bobcats will get their first taste of NBA action against the Milwaukee Bucks this Monday.