Kemba Walker had one heck of a night for the Celtics against the Knicks.
The guard dropped 32 points in Boston’s 118-85 win over New York at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night. Walker, much like in Friday’s win over the Toronto Raptors, started off slow in the first half. But he caught fire in the third and fourth quarters, shooting 8-of-9 from the floor.
Walker also amassed five rebounds, four assists and made seven 3-point shots in the victory. So what set Walker off in the second?
“I think some of it has to do with the building,” he told NBC Sports Boston’s Abby Chin after the game. “I’m looking for the rhythm, just getting more comfortable with the offense (and) my team. Taking the right shots, not thinking as much as I was in the last couple games. It was a great second half for me. Hopefully we can all keep it going.”
But it wasn’t just Walker who had a monster second half. The Celtics as a whole outscored New York 72-43, and Walker believes his teammates’ intensity played a key role.
“Our energy level was extremely high,” he told Chin. “Our togetherness was extremely high. And that’s what it has to be for us to win games. Especially defensively, we got after it. Rob (Williams), he was amazing for us. His energy in the paint, just wreaking havoc out there, we need that from these guys.”
Here are some other notes from Saturday’s Celtics-Knicks game:
— Tacko Fall made his regular-season debut in the final minutes of the fourth quarter. The 7-foot-5 center picked up four points, including a standing dunk.
?We love Tacko. We love Tacko, man. He?s a great dude,” Walker said, per MassLive’s John Karalis. “Everything he?s gained, he deserves. We love him. He works hard, man. Happy for him.?
— Grant Williams had a strong game, picking up seven points to go along with a nice block on Bobby Portis.
?Grant?s skill and passing is really good for us. We can stretch guys out that way,? Stevens said, per the team. ?And I thought he did things defensively above the rim today that were really impressive.?
— Carsen Edwards also had an impressive game for Boston with 10 points, three assists and a rebound. And on the second night of a back-to-back, Walker said the rookies made a huge difference.
“It’s so impressive,” he told Chin. “So impressive, man. Those young guys, the stuff they did tonight are the things they’re going to have to do for us to win games. They gotta bring the energy for us and hopefully those guys can continue to do what they did tonight.
— Marcus Smart had another double-digit point game, amassing 12 on Saturday night.
Jaylen Brown (19), Jayson Tatum (15) and Edwards (10) all reached double figures, as well.
— Boston now as a few days off before welcoming the Milwaukee Bucks to TD Garden on Wednesday night.