Kemba Walker on ongoing trade rumours: "I could care less"

Toronto Raptors v Charlotte Hornets

Since being involved in intense trade rumours leading up to last season's deadline, Kemba Walker's name continues to be branded around as his future with the Charlotte Hornets remains up for debate.

He stayed with the team after the trade deadline closed in February but now that it's re-opened for the offseason, the speculation has started again. 

It has gathered momentum again recently as Walker will be a free agent next year and it's not possible for the Hornets to sign him to an extension this summer due to their tight salary cap restrictions. 

Blocking out the noise

But the point guard has become used to seeing his name being linked with a move and refuses to pay any attention to it. 

"I'm not even thinking about it. I see it all the time. I hear about it all the time. I hear about the rumours, but I could care less. I'm a Hornet and that's really all that matters," Walker told the team's official website regarding the trade talk. 

The 28-year-old has spent his entire seven-year career in Charlotte since they drafted him with the number nine overall pick in 2011. 

New general manager Mitch Kupchak recently declared that Walker will be the "focal point" of the franchise moving forward and they have no interest of parting with him. 

Chicago Bulls v Charlotte Hornets

"It means a lot. It means a lot," Walker said. "I want to feel wanted, of course. It feels good. I'm excited he did it. He's a good man and I'm getting to know him every single day.

"I'm a Hornet. I'm going into my eighth year and I'm excited like it's my rookie year. I'm here right now and that's all I can really think of.

"I've got to control what I can control ... that's really about it. I'm not even thinking about it. I see it all the time. I hear about it all the time. I hear about the rumours, but I could care less. I'm a Hornet and that's really all that matters."

The Hornets are heading into a new era with Kupchak replacing Rich Cho as GM and former San Antonio Spurs assistant James Borrego hired to take over from Steve Clifford as the new head coach. 

ISRAEL-CROATIA-BASKET-LIFESTYLE-US

Walker addressed the team's changes and admitted that it was tough seeing Clifford and his staff go. 

"I was here for a while with Cliff and the rest of his staff, especially guys like [former assistant] coach [Stephen] Silas. I was pretty upset when those guys got let go, but that's the nature of the business," Walker said.

"You kind of have to understand the things that go on with our league and what happens in organisations. People have to make decisions and people have to make tough decisions as well."

As far as Charlotte is concerned, they don't have any decision to make over their All-Star this summer and he's made it clear that he's happy to continue playing his basketball in North Carolina for as long as the team wants him.

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