This offseason, the Boston Celtics were in a state of flux. With the impending departures of Kyrie Irving and Al Horford, it seemed that the team was entering a rebuilding phase in which they would have to build around their young talent.
Instead, the team was able to retool. That was largely thanks to Kemba Walker's interest in joining the team. Walker's interest surprised their co-owner, Steve Pagliuca, who shared how he reacted when he heard the news.
"I almost crashed my car when I heard that," Pagliuca said, per Nicole Yang of The Boston Globe.
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It's easy to understand why Pagliuca was so surprised. Walker, who had spent his entire nine-year NBA career with the Charlotte Hornets, could've gotten a supermax to stay put with the Hornets. Instead, he wanted to join a winner and evidently was impressed with the Celtics.
Walker should be the perfect replacement for Kyrie Irving and should help to build better chemistry in a locker room that dealt with numerous issues last year. And Walker's addition plus the acquisition of rookies Grant Williams, Romeo Langford, Carsen Edwards, and Tremont Waters has done a lot to transform the Celtics' personality, as Pagliuca noted.
"There's just really a positive attitude from everybody this year," Pagliuca said, per Yang. "We've got a bunch of hard-working players that really want to achieve. We couldn't ask for anything more."
After last season, that should be refreshing to Celtics fans, especially if they can stay competitive in what should be a wide-open Eastern Conference outside of the favored No. 1 seed Milwaukee Bucks.