ESPN the Magazine has a great article on the Celtics second round pick, Bill Walker. It really makes you want to pull for this guy. Just as with Leon Powe, his promise was curtailed by injuries. Hopefully, Walker's story will have as good a result as Powe's has so far. (hat tip to Mon on CelticsBlog for pointing this out). Here is a a little taste of what the article has to say:
Late in Kansas State's loss to Oregon in November, Bill Walker hustled downcourt, head turned back toward the ball, arm raised in the air. He looked like Randy Moss in Oakland, eyes wide and pleading. When the ball never came, Walker stared at the floor and pursed his lips in frustration. It wasn't the first time the play and the game had seemed to go on without him.
Walker, despite once looking like one of the most awesome forces in basketball, has always watched the ball go elsewhere in the most crucial moments—first to lifelong pal O.J. Mayo, now to current "it" man Michael Beasley. He is a star unseen. The story of Billy Walker is not of the pressure of 10,000 glares, but of the pressure of none.
Not that there haven't been moments. Amazing moments, actually. As a prep, his dribble-drive moves were legendary—bounce, bounce, left, right, left, step back. His crossover was so vicious that crowds cheered before he hit the lane. His hops were really what got him noticed, especially by the guys—Kevin Love and Greg Oden includedmdash;he was leaping over. But moments are all he's had.
Most of us are defined by the person we are. Bill Walker has always been defined by the person he isn't.