Kemba Walker’s Knicks turnaround earns him Player of the Week

Kemba Walker has gone from persona non grata to player of the week.

The Bronx native’s revival with the Knicks following a nine-game benching took another step on Monday when Walker was named the Eastern Conference’s top player for last week after averaging 25.0 points, 9.0 rebounds and 8.3 assists in leading the Knicks to two wins in three games.

Oklahoma City guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander won the weekly award for the Western Conference.

After netting 29 points on Dec. 18 in Boston in his first appearance in more than three weeks, Walker followed that with a 21-point game in a win over the Pistons. The four-time All-Star guard then erupted for 44 points in a loss last Thursday to the Wizards before registering the Knicks’ first triple-double on Christmas with 10 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists in 40 minutes in a win over the Hawks.

Kemba Walker was all smiles during the Knicks’ win on Christmas.
Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post

“I think it was a blessing in disguise, to be honest,” Walker said of his benching after Saturday’s game. “It’s like it happened for a reason, man.

“I have a tendency of not wanting to step on toes, and that’s what I did early on. I wasn’t being as aggressive I think as I could’ve been. Being out, seeing how the game was flowing and going, put me in a different mindset.”