One of the best parts about Charles Barkley is that he’s not out to just talk trash for grandstanding purposes. He means what he says and will tell it to your face, even if you’re an NBA All-Star.
Prior to the start of Thursday night’s LA Clippers-Golden State Warriors game, Barkley said on TNT’s pregame show that he thought the Warriors would be a 7th or 8th seed in the Western Conference playoffs. He was toying with the idea of saying they would miss the playoffs entirely, but was not willing to go that far.
Well, after watching the Warriors play in the first half against the Clippers, Barkley changed his opinion. Chuck told Klay Thompson, who is recovering from a torn ACL, that the Warriors’ window is shut. Barkley also said the Warriors wouldn’t make the playoffs.
Charles Barkley straight up tells Klay Thompson to his face that the Warriors championship window is "shut" and that the Warriors won't make the playoffs. pic.twitter.com/k6D6VAfFny
— gifdsports (@gifdsports) October 25, 2019
Thompson said Barkley had the right to be pessimistic, but the Warriors guard expressed confidence in the team’s young players.
“I think it’s exciting. I think we’ve got enough guys to get us there at least,” Thompson said.
Steve Kerr said this week that he was not expecting to have Thompson back this season. So if Golden State does make the playoffs, it might be playing the entire year without Thompson. The real challenge is that the West is so stacked with talent, it will be hard to beat out all the competition.
The Golden State Warriors have held out hope that Klay Thompson could make a late-season return in 2020 after suffering a torn ACL in Game 6 of the NBA Finals four months ago, but that optimism has now faded away.
Speaking with NBC Sports Bay Area during an exclusive interview that will air in its entirety on Thursday at 1:00 p.m. ET as part of the “NBA Season Tip-Off” promotion for the MyTeams app, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr admitted that Thompson is unlikely to return at all this season.
“It’s unlikely that he’s going to play this year,” Kerr said. “So we have to understand that.”
Thompson underwent surgery on July 2 and expressed a desire to return after the All-Star break, but Kerr recognizes that perhaps everyone was looking at this through rose-colored glasses.
“You have to look at it realistically,” Kerr said said. “I had an ACL [tear] in college, and I missed a whole season. Generally, an ACL for a basketball player is a full-year recovery, and if it’s a full year for Klay, that puts them out for the season.
“We’ve kind of left the door open in case the rehab goes perfectly and the doctors say he can go. But the reality is, on April 1, that’s the nine-month mark. … April versus nine months post-op for an ACL.
“We have to prepare our young guys to fill that role behind him, and when he gets back, whenever that is, hopefully these young guys now are developed and in the rotation and ready to really be contributors on a playoff team and we can get better.”
Thompson has remained around the team and intends to keep it that way throughout the season, but Kerr admits his superstar has become bored and will have to manage that moving forward.
With Thompson out, Kevin Durant now calling Brooklyn home and Andre Iguodala’s departure, it’s clearly a year of transition for these Warriors.
Klay Thompson took in Sunday’s Cubs-Milwaukee Brewers game at Wrigley Field in Chicago along with girlfriend Laura Harrier, and the two seemed to enjoy themselves.
The two were sitting in the front row for the game and were shown by CSN Chicago grooving to some music:
Also Confirmed: Klay Thompson likes to move it, move it.
Possibly groove it, but this is not confirmed as of now. pic.twitter.com/bsU24mrIOU
— Cubs Talk (@NBCSCubs) September 1, 2019
Thompson is recovering from surgery to repair a torn ACL suffered during the NBA Finals in June. He underwent the surgery in early July and says he does not want to push his return. The 29-year-old is a part of the cast of “Space Jam 2”, which has been shooting this summer. Thompson working as an actor would allow him to relate to Harrier in that regard. Harrier, 29, is known for her role in “Spider-Man: Homecoming”.
There was talk the two had taken a break in their relationship, but they are definitely together and recently enjoyed a trip to France.
Back in January, Thompson credited Harrier for inspiring his monster 44-point game.
Klay Thompson has a message for critics who say the Golden State Warriors’ dynasty is over.
The Warriors lost Kevin Durant in free agency to the Brooklyn Nets and DeMarcus Cousins to the Lakers. They traded away Andre Iguodala to make room for D’Angelo Russell. Shaun Livingston was waived. And Thompson is recovering from surgery to repair a torn ACL. For all those reasons, many don’t view the Warriors as a championship contender entering the season. Moreover, some believe their dynasty has ended.
“I think that’s a little premature, to say there’s no more dynasty,” Thompson told ESPN’s ‘The Jump’ in response to such talk. “We still have Stephen Curry, a two-time MVP. Draymond Green, a Defensive Player of the Year. Adding D’Angelo Russell was an incredible get for us. That kid is going to blossom into a superstar in this league.
“I think I’m going to come back even more, even more athletic. It would not be smart to count the Dubs out.”
He’s right; it would not be smart to count out the Warriors. But expecting them to contend for the championship next season is equally unlikely.
One factor that should help the team is the way they’re being discounted by many. Seemingly being slighted by Kevin Durant and hearing that the “dynasty is over” should motivate them entering next season.
Here’s video of Klay’s comments:
Klay Thompson on those who say the Warriors' dynasty is over: "To say the dynasty is over is a little ignorant because I'm going to come back better and even more athletic. It would not be smart to count the Dubs out." pic.twitter.com/BVshD0xzR2
— Chris Montano (@gswchris) August 1, 2019
Klay Thompson’s shoe company Anta is celebrating their client’s max contract with the Golden State Warriors by releasing a special edition sneaker.
ESPN/Nice Kicks sneaker reporter Nick DePaula shared on Twitter Monday that Anta is collaborating with the East Bay Times on the Anta KT4s, a special edition shoe that features newspaper clippings on it. The shoe references Thompson’s habit of reading the newspaper at his locker before games.
Klay Thompson is celebrating his new @Warriors Max deal with a special edition sneaker drop this weekend, highlighting his pre-game locker ritual of reading the newspaper.
— Nick DePaula (@NickDePaula) July 2, 2019
Thompson received a five-year, $190 million max contract from the Golden State Warriors, the team that drafted him in 2011. He will be recovering from surgery to repair a torn ACL suffered in Game 6 of the NBA Finals against the Raptors.
Thompson has averaged 19.5 points on 45.9 percent shooting for his career. He is a career 41.9 percent 3-point shooter and has been especially clutch in the playoffs for the Dubs.
Klay Thompson looks set to get the max deal from the Golden State Warriors he so badly wanted.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Warriors will offer Thompson the five-year, $190 million max deal he is seeking when free agency starts at 6 p.m. ET Sunday. Once that happens, a formal agreement is expected to come quickly.
Sources: Golden State is planning to offer All-Star Klay Thompson a 5-year, $190M maximum contract when free agency opens Sunday at 6 PM ET — which is expected to accelerate process of GM Bob Myers and Thompson’s agent, Greg Lawrence, quickly reaching formal agreement.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 28, 2019
The news doesn’t come as a massive surprise. Thompson has said all along that he wanted to stay with the Warriors, and Golden State appeared committed to giving him what he wanted even after he tore his ACL in the NBA Finals. While Thompson was ready to play hardball if the max offer from the Warriors didn’t come his way immediately, it doesn’t look like that will be necessary.
Klay Thompson is widely expected to re-sign with the Golden State Warriors this summer, but he and his representatives are working hard to ensure the team comes with a bag of cash.
Reports over the past two months have been linking Thompson to other teams in free agency, such as the LA Clippers. On Thursday, the Los Angeles Times’ Brad Turner reported that Thompson will be ready to listen to offers from the Clippers and Lakers if the Warriors don’t bring the max offer of five years and $190 million.
Sources: If the Warriors don’t offer guard Klay Thompson a max $190 million deal on Sunday when free agency opens, he will listen to both LA teams, the Lakers and Clippers. Lakers back in the runnings because they now have max slot of $32 million after today’s trade.
— Brad Turner (@BA_Turner) June 28, 2019
Thompson’s team is playing hardball here. Klay may be chill and mild-mannered, but he wants the respect from the team in terms of a max deal that he has earned. If they try to do anything less, he is threatening to leave for two of their biggest rivals within the conference — teams that are emerging. The downside is those teams can only offer him a four-year deal, so the Warriors have the best position.
A few years ago, Andre Iguodala was forced to secure an offer from the Rockets in free agency before the Warriors stepped up to the plate. Thompson doesn’t want to be forced to do that, but he is willing to use that threat in order to get what he wants from Golden State.