Marcus Smart Says Kemba Walker Is Fitting In Seamlessly With Celtics


Marcus Smart and the new-look Boston Celtics are prepping for the 2019-20 campaign, but one major piece is still getting used to his new surroundings.

Kemba Walker comes in as Boston’s biggest offseason addition, acting as Kyrie Irving’s replacement in the backcourt. But Smart and teammates Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown had the opportunity to play alongside Walker with the United States men’s national team at the 2019 FIBA World Cup this summer, giving them a head start in the chemistry department.

Smart emphasized this in a conversation on The Athletic’s “Tampering,” a podcast hosted by Joe Vardon and Sam Amick.

“Me, Jayson and Jaylen, we’ve played together for a few years now, so we got it,” Smart said. “But adding Kemba was different because we knew he was coming into a system where he knew nothing about. He had to learn — and it’s not easy. You don’t want to step on anybody’s toes, you also want to insert yourself and do what you do, but you want to do it in respect for the team. But Kemba has fit right in with us, it’s like he’s been with us for a very long time.”

Walker will start alongside Tatum and Brown, while Smart likely will begin the season anchoring the Celtics’ second unit off the bench.

Boston begins its season on Oct. 23 with a road matchup against the Philadelphia 76ers.

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