Celtics guard Kemba Walker, who grew up in the Bronx, donned a Yankees hat before Boston’s game against the Nets on Friday. He’s still recovering from a knee injury but was able to lightly dribble in shootaround.
His attire upset some fans who thought he shouldn’t represent a rival of his team’s city, regardless of where he spent his childhood. Video of the outfit ignited debate about the merits of what a player should and should not do when it comes to supporting other sports franchises.
Walker has run this course before. He’s a lifelong Yankees fan who even threw out a first pitch in New York in 2011, so after a game in August he appeared on video representing his favorite baseball club. The issue apparently cuts deep enough for people in Boston to argue through once more.
Below is the clip of Walker on Friday that drew a fresh wave of conversation. NBC Sports Boston, which has 78,000 Twitter followers for its Celtics account, helped fan the flames with its caption to the video.
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New Yorkers, of course, absolutely loved all of it: the Boston residents complaining, the enduring hometown loyalty from Walker and the chance to rib their enemies.
Celtics fans were split between seeing Walker as treasonous and seeing him as well within his rights to do whatever he wants.
Here are some of the social media opinions that offer a taste of the ridiculous debate:
Specifically he’s from the Bronx. At least he’s consistent. LeBron can’t make his mind if he’s an Indians or Yankees fan
— Mark Murphy (@murph369900) December 26, 2020
Yeah I know he from NY, but he has to remember he is in Red Sox country haha.
— Jack of all trades (@The_Reason11) December 25, 2020
Some weird people around, especially on this app unfortunately🤷🏽♂️
— Kam☘️ (@KAMMY__99) December 25, 2020
Celtics fans gotta let that hat thing go with Kemba, guy is always gonna be a New Yorker for life lol
— Travonne Edwards (Blk Tray) (@Travonne) December 26, 2020
Love Kemba sticking it to Bos fans with the Yankee cap
— Gary Collard (@LakerGMC) December 25, 2020
He must be doing it to make a point now as I am sure he knows how Celtic fans and Sox fans feel about the Yankees, not impressed
— Daniel Hebert (@eyesmile19591) December 25, 2020