Kemba Walker showed up at a BIG3 event in the home arena of the Charlotte Hornets hours before word broke that he and the Boston Celtics will agree to a contract when free agency begins in earnest on Sunday. If it truly is Walker’s last appearance in Charlotte as a Hornet, he allowed Stephen Jackson to do the talking for him and frustrated Charlotte hoops fans who have lost a star without much to show for it.
Walker had said again and again that he wanted to make it work in Charlotte and build a winner with the Hornets, but the franchise apparently offered him far less than the supermax contract he was able to get from only Charlotte this summer. Once word of that deal was made public it seemed extremely likely that Walker would, well, walk.
This is a pattern another former Charlotte star, Stephen Jackson, was asked about after he played in Charlotte on Saturday. And he didn’t hold back in criticizing the franchise for, in his opinion, not appreciating another franchise great.
Jackson pointed out his own usage in Charlotte when they were the Bobcats and said the franchise does not value its players, and that certainly includes Walker.
“They’re known for not appreciating their players. You see what I’m saying?” Jackson said. “So if they don’t pay this kid, with the work that he’s done. With everything else left in that locker room, you should sign him.”
It’s a harsh criticism that will certainly be received well by a Hornets fanbase frustrated that their team did not offer Walker the deal many feel he deserves. Instead, Walker will likely head to Boston and the Hornets will be left to start over on things once again.