Kemba Walker on playing alongside Marcus Smart: “I just know that I’ve got somebody that’s a warrior”

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 26: Kemba Walker #8 of the Boston Celtics handles the ball against the New York Knicks on October 26, 2019 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

The Boston Celtics take on the San Antonio Spurs this weekend as part of NBA Saturdays – the NBA’s initiative to promote games played in European primetime. Ahead of the game Boston star Kemba Walker talked about adjusting to life on the Celtics roster, as well as how he keeps up to date with other teams in the league.

Q: You’ve had slow starts on the road?

KW: “It’s something that has not been going our way. I think it’s really good that we find a way to stay in these games and still compete when we start slow. But that has to change. It can’t keep up this whole season. Teams that take advantage of that, it can be tough for us. We can’t play catchup the whole season.”

Q: How do you do that? Come out and match their energy?

KW: “It’s just us, me as well. I’ve got to set the tone, especially being one of the leaders on the team. I’ve got to just get my guys ready to start the game. Even me, it starts with me a lot. I’ve got to have better starts as well.”

Q: Do you feel like you’re playing differently than you have in the past?

KW: “I don’t think I’m playing differently at all. I can’t put my finger on it. It’s just something that we have to be conscious of. You just have to get better. I think for us, it starts on the offensive end. I think it gets in our heads. It starts to get frustrating. We’ve missed shots early and it trickles down to our defense. We just have to be better. We’re not going to make shots all the time. We can’t control the offense all the time, but we can control the defense with our energy, so that’s where we’ve got to start.”

Q: What changes for you when you start alongside Marcus Smart?

KW: “Nothing. Just knowing I have a warrior beside me, a guy that’s going to get after it with everything’s he’s got on the court. I love playing alongside him. He’s an awesome teammate, really fun to be around, really fun to play with. His passion for the game is second to none. I just know that I’ve got somebody that’s a warrior, man. I know we’re definitely going to go as he goes.”

Q: Do you watch other games?

KW: “Yeah, I love watching basketball. I love watching other friends around the league when I get a chance to watch those guys. I watch other teams. My League Pass is always on.”

NBA Saturdays presented by NBA2K20 on Sky Sports – part of a record 48 Primetime games live on Sky Sports starting from 8:30pm every weekend. This week on 9 November the San Antonio Spurs host the Boston Celtics on Sky Sports Mix from 10pm