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Report: Pistons, Kemba Walker finalizing contract buyout

Veteran point guard will become free agent on Thursday night.

Kemba Walker #8 of the New York Knicks smiles during the game against the Oklahoma City Thunder on February 14, 2022 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York. Photo by Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images

The Detroit Pistons and PG Kemba Walker are finalizing a buyout agreement, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Walker was traded to the Pistons as part of a multi-team deal on NBA Draft night. The New York Knicks shipped Walker to the Pistons in a deal also involving the Charlotte Hornets, and Detroit ended up with the No. 11 pick in the draft, using it to take Jalen Duren out of Memphis.

Walker was set to make $9.2 million on an expiring contract in 2022-23. The four-time All-Star didn’t play much in the 2021-22 season for the Knicks. Walker was both injured and benched in favor of younger/better defensive players on New York. It’s unclear what role Walker would have on another team. The injuries limit Walker’s ability to guard and he isn’t the dynamic scorer he was during his prime.

Chances are a team may take a shot on Walker in free agency on the veteran’s minimum. Walker is a good mentor to younger back court players and could be a useful scorer on a second unit if he can shake the knee injuries and get close to 100% healthy.