Rumors have started to circulate about Klay Thompson’s future with the Golden State Warriors but he’s firmly focused on the task at hand.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Saturday that Thompson “has an expectation that he would be rewarded with a new max-level contract extension this offseason.”
It’s an interesting spot for the Warriors, who need to do all they can to lock up one of their core pieces in Thompson but also have to weigh that he’s 33 years old and a massive tax bill is coming their way.
Thompson was asked about the report from Wojnarowski on Sunday and didn’t deny it. However, he put the focus on the Warriors’ current championship chase.
“I’m seeking a championship. And everything else after that will play itself out,” Thompson said.
Warriors Facing Massive Bill to Keep Roster Together
Thompson is extension eligible this summer but he has one more year left on the five-year, $190 million max deal he signed in 2019. Thompson had an extended injury absence during the deal, missing 941 days with a torn ACL and subsequent torn right Achilles tendon.
Thompson looked back to his old self this season, averaging 21.9 points per game on 43.6% shooting from the field and 41.2% from deep.
“This is an inflection point for the Golden State organization, with Klay Thompson, Steph Curry and then Draymond Green, who could opt into his deal at $27 million,” Wojnarowski said in his initial report. “The Warriors could be facing a payroll and luxury tax over $500 million.”
Thompson Eager for Redemption Against Kings in Game 2
Despite turning in a decent stat line, Thompson had a rough opener against the Kings. He went 8 of 19 from the field and just 5 of 14 from deep. He finished with 21 points but was a game-low minus-14.
Thompson’s shot selection late wasn’t great but he plans to turn it around in Game 2.
“I welcome that. The shots I was getting tonight will go down at a much higher rate on Monday,” Thompson said, per Anthony Slater of The Athletic.
A key for the Warriors will be playing better with Curry on the bench. The former MVP had 30 points and played 37 minutes. He was +11 during his time on the court. Donte Divincenzo was the only other Warriors player in positive territory.
“I don’t regret resting him. I think he’s a player who has to work so hard at both ends — with the ball in his hands, but also defensively,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said on Sunday. “I think playing Steph 40-plus minutes isn’t the answer. The answer is handling the non-Steph minutes better, and that’s something we’ve got to do.”
The Warriors are listed as a 1-point underdog against the Kings in Game 2. The total for the matchup is set at a whopping 240 points. The Warriors are 8-2 in their last 10 games against Sacramento but the Kings have the momentum of the most recent win.