Flashing Back Forward: Antoine Walker

 

Antoine Walker

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3x All Star, 2006 NBA Champion

There are many jokes that have circulated in reference to Antoine Walker that have little to do with basketball (his weight gain resulting in his head resembling a large milk dud, the gambling troubles that became legal ones) and many want to diminish him to simply his shimmy celebrations (his awesome, awesome shimmy celebrations). What has been forgotten is that Toine was a BALLER. Before being traded to the Mavericks Walker went 4 straight years in the 2000s in which he averaged 21 and 8. The numbers aren’t gaudy, but the way he got buckets is what was beautiful to a pure hoops fan. Mt. Carmel’s finest had post moves that included sweeping jump hooks, drop steps, fade aways. He could put the ball on the floor and get separation for step backs. He even had 2 straight years (All Star years) in which he jacked 7 three point attempts a game. At the 4 position! This garnered criticism at the time, but Cyber Toine was obviously ahead of his time. Him and Paul Pierce was a great forward combo in the East, able to feed each other in the post and kick back out to each other for open shots outta double teams. Walker was never the same post-Boston, but he played a huge role as the Heat’s third leading playoff scorer during that 2006 championship run. And even got an iconic shimmy off.

 

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