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#pounditThursday, February 2, 2023

Articles tagged: Klay Thompson

Draymond Green gave Klay Thompson a real kick in the balls after torn ACL

Draymond Green during practice

Draymond Green added insult to injury after Klay Thompson tore his ACL.

Thompson suffered a torn ACL during Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals, which the Golden State Warriors lost to the Toronto Raptors. The Warriors lost those Finals in six games and were doubly disappointed. Not only did they lose the series, but both Thompson and Kevin Durant suffered serious injuries during the playoffs.

Green, who is a longtime teammate of Thompson, went to visit his injured friend the day after the series ended.

According to Green, he wanted to try to take Thompson’s mind off the injury. They ended up playing dominoes, and Green says he won $4,000 off Thompson.

Green shared the story for NBC Sports Bay Area.

Well, that is one way to take someone’s mind off an injury and the Finals.

Green says that Thompson hasn’t forgotten about the matter and reminds him of it. How could he not?

Thompson suffered a torn Achilles tendon while trying to return from his torn ACL and hasn’t played since 2019. He’s getting close to finally returning this season.

Photo: Feb 20, 2020; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) stands on the court before the game against the Houston Rockets at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Draymond Green has warning for Klay Thompson ahead of his return

Draymond Green during practice

Draymond Green thinks that Klay Thompson could be in for a bit of a rude awakening after two-and-a-half years out of NBA action.

The Golden State Warriors star Green spoke with reporters this week and gave a warning for Thompson ahead of Thompson’s much-awaited return.

“It’s funny because me and [teammate Kevon Looney] will joke about the positioning in the NBA today,” he said, per The Athletic’s Anthony Slater. “We joke with Klay. Like, ‘Klay, this ain’t the NBA you left, brother. You coming back, you gonna be a stretch 4.’ It’s the way this league works now.

“Point guards that were kinda hybrid guards, they are now 4s … maybe a 3,” added Green. “They’re aren’t point guards now. It isn’t the same league.”

Green’s here to Thompson here is obviously a bit in jest, but there is definitely truth to it. On Monday night against the Sacramento Kings, the Warriors went with a late lineup of three traditional guards (Steph Curry, Gary Payton II, and Damion Lee) to go along with Green and Otto Porter Jr. Before he got hurt, the 6-foot-6 Thompson already played a decent amount of small forward. It would not be too surprising to see him move up a spot to the 4, especially so he doesn’t have to chase speedy wings upon returning.

The ex-All-Star Thompson appears to be nearing a specific return date. But Green thinks that he should probably keep his head on a swivel because the game could look a lot different from the last time that Thompson played it.

Photo: Feb 20, 2020; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) stands on the court before the game against the Houston Rockets at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Warriors may have return date in mind for Klay Thompson

Klay Thompson wearing warmups

Klay Thompson’s return to the Golden State Warriors is likely to come within the next two weeks or so, and one date may be sticking out on the calendar.

Thompson was recalled from the G League this week and is working on ramping up his conditioning to get into game shape. The Warriors want him to return during a home game, ruling out a return on Christmas, as the team has a road game against the Phoenix Suns.

That would leave Dec. 20 or Dec. 23, but according to Shams Charania and Anthony Slater of The Athletic, Thompson could return on Dec. 28 when the Warriors host the Denver Nuggets.

This would more or less line up with the timeline Thompson himself offered earlier this month.

The Warriors are in no rush as Thompson works his way back from the torn ACL and subsequent Achilles tear he suffered. There hasn’t been any indication of any setbacks in his rehab, and he’s in the home stretch now.

Photo: May 14, 2019; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in game one of the Western conference finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Klay Thompson reveals when he expects to return

Klay Thompson wearing warmups

Klay Thompson’s return date is starting to feel like an album release with how much uncertainty is surrounding it. But Thompson himself is now offering some clarity on the situation.

The injured Golden State Warriors star revealed in an Instagram Live session on Friday when he expects to return to the court for the team.

“In the next few weeks, maybe a month,” said Thompson, per Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated.

There has been plenty of speculation about when the five-time All-Star will make his much-awaited return. We have heard Christmas Day, January, and other conflicting dates. Warriors head coach Steve Kerr even added to the confusion by disputing a recent report about Thompson’s progress.

Regardless, video has emerged this week of Thompson looking good in team scrimmages and even getting up shots in full uniform before games. These would seem to suggest that his return date is indeed not too far off.

It helps that the Warriors have been an elite team this season, even without Thompson. They are 18-3, which is the second-best record in the NBA. That gives Golden State the luxury of bringing Thompson along slowly to ensure that he has his conditioning back before taking the court. But there are still plenty of reasons why Thompson may be itching to return as soon as he can.

Photo: May 14, 2019; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in game one of the Western conference finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Steve Kerr disputes report about Klay Thompson’s return

Klay Thompson wearing warmups

The latest report about Klay Thompson’s return from injury is being disputed by a fairly reliable source.

Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr reacted on Sunday to a report from Shams Charania and The Athletic that claimed Thompson had been cleared for full participation in practice. Kerr said that nobody had told him about that supposed development.

“I don’t know where that came from,” Kerr added about the report, per Mark Haynes of ClutchPoints.

Charania and The Athletic are usually one of the best in the business when it comes to inside scoops. Their report also contained the alleged date that Thompson is targeting for his return.

The five-time All-Star Thompson still has not played since June 2019 due to a torn left ACL and subsequent right Achilles rupture. The Warriors have done well this season in his absence however, holding a league-best 14-2 record. What we do know for now is that Thompson will have a fire in his eyes whenever he does return.

Klay Thompson has target date for his return

Klay Thompson wearing warmups

The Golden State Warriors have been in no rush for Klay Thompson to return partly because of how well they have played this season, but we now have a better idea of when we might see the sharpshooter return to action.

Thompson took part in 5-on-5 scrimmages with the Warriors this week, and Shams Charania of The Athletic reported on Sunday that the five-time All-Star has been cleared to fully participate in practice. Thompson has been given the green light to practice full-time with the Warriors. He could potentially return the week before Christmas, according to Charania.

Thompson has not played in a game since June 2019, when he tore his ACL. He missed the entire 2019-20 season. He then ruptured his Achilles last November and was forced to sit out the entire 2020-21 season as well.

The Warriors have been one of the biggest surprises of the NBA this season. They entered Sunday with a league-best 14-2 record. They weren’t going to rush Thompson back to begin with, but their outstanding play has removed any pressure they might have faced.

Photo: May 14, 2019; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in game one of the Western conference finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Klay Thompson unhappy with disrespect that Warriors get from analysts

Klay Thompson wearing warmups

Klay Thompson is not pleased with the suggestion that the Golden State Warriors are Mickey Mouse contenders.

In a recent interview with Sports Illustrated, the injured Warriors star spoke on the disrespect that he feels the team has gotten from analysts this season.

“I love it,” said Thompson defiantly. “I hope people keep doubting us. Saw someone on TV the other day talking about, ‘The Warriors aren’t contenders because they’ve had a soft schedule.’ Buddy, we got the MVP, a defensive player of the year. That kind of disrespect bothers me.

“We have so many champions, guys who have done it in the highest pressure moments, and you’re still gonna question our ability?” Thompson added. “I love it. But whatever. That’s what talking heads are paid to do.”

The Warriors are an NBA-best 11-2 this season. They have scored the most points per game in the league (115.1) and have held opponents to the third-fewest points per game in the league (101.8), leading to a league-high plus-13.3 point differential. The Warriors have also gotten quality wins against teams like the Lakers, the Clippers, and the Bulls. Thus, the fundamentals definitely check out for them.

Still though, that has not stopped analysts from expressing skepticism about the Warriors. In one viral clip from earlier this month, new ESPN analyst JJ Redick questioned the team over the schedule issue.

Regardless, the Warriors are blowing out almost every team they face right now, and their two losses have come by a combined seven points. They may get Thompson back fairly soon too. He can help make sure that the Warriors start receiving the respect that they deserve from the public.

Photo: May 14, 2019; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in game one of the Western conference finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Klay Thompson now has clearer return timetable?

Klay Thompson wearing warmups

The Golden State Warriors may be zeroing in on a release date for Klay Thompson: The Return.

Boardroom’s Jordan Schultz reported on Saturday that Thompson is making steady progress and is about five to six weeks away from returning. Schultz adds that Thompson is in “great shape” and is close to playing 5-on-5.

Thompson, who has not played since June 2019, has already been creating some serious buzz about his return. But the Warriors are an NBA-best 11-1 this season and are getting strong production out of the shooting guard spot from Jordan Poole, Gary Payton II, and Damion Lee. Therefore, they have the luxury of bringing Thompson along slowly.

Regardless, five to six weeks would put Thompson’s return date some time in mid-to-late December. Christmas Day would mark six weeks exactly. That means that the Warriors could have a lot more than presents to look forward to this holiday season.

Photo: May 14, 2019; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in game one of the Western conference finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Klay Thompson creating major buzz about his return

Klay Thompson wearing warmups

The Golden State Warriors have been a fire-breathing machine to start the season, and they might get even stronger from here.

ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said this week on “NBA Today” that injured Golden State star Klay Thompson may be starting to look like his old self again.

“The whispers going on in the league right now about Klay Thompson,” said Windhorst. “People are watching him. People are talking to people in the Warriors organization. And they say he looks good. Now I’m not saying he’s coming back and he’s gonna be shooting 40 points in his first quarter. But he looks good working out, and there is a real confidence in there that, especially by the end of the season, that Klay is going to be BACK back.”

The Warriors are a smoldering 9-1 this season, which is the best record in the entire NBA. 22-year-old Jordan Poole has stepped up with 18.2 points per game as their starting shooting guard on top of the usual contributions from players like Steph Curry, Draymond Green, and Andrew Wiggins.

There are obviously no guarantees about Thompson, who is still in the midst of a lengthy absence from two devastating injuries — a torn ACL followed by a ruptured Achilles. In fact, it has now been almost 900 days since the five-time All-Star last played in an NBA game (he was first injured in June 2019). But we know that Thompson is coming back with a bloodthirst, and it sounds like he is starting to look the part as well.

Klay Thompson defends Mark Jackson for time as Warriors coach

Klay Thompson wearing warmups

Few people look back fondly on Mark Jackson’s tenure as Golden State Warriors coach, but one of his former players definitely does.

Injured Warriors star Klay Thompson spoke Friday on ESPN’s broadcast of his team’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans. During the interview, Thompson shouted out Jackson, who now works as an analyst for the network and was on the call for the game.

“Give Coach Jackson credit,” said Thompson. “Before anybody else, [before] anybody believed in us, Coach Jackson did. He called me and Steph [Curry] the greatest shooting duo of all-time. I mean, that couldn’t have come more true. Just kind of a testament to your ability to read the game. They called you crazy, but at the time …”

Jackson, who coached the Warriors from 2011 to 2014, was Thompson’s first head coach in the league. He laid the framework for the Warriors to become a dynasty, taking them from a 23-win lottery team in his first season to a 51-win playoff team in his final season.

Granted, the Warriors did not actually become that dynasty until Steve Kerr took over. Kerr built a strong culture, implemented a lethal offensive system around Curry and Thompson, and made a bunch of tactical changes, such as starting Draymond Green. As for Jackson, he has yet to coach in the league since then (in addition to some unsavory details emerging about his time in Golden State). But regardless of all that, Thompson feels Jackson should get more credit for planting the seed that ultimately led to the Warriors’ three-ring juggernaut.

Photo: May 14, 2019; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in game one of the Western conference finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports