Warriors’ Klay Thompson Makes Big Confession About Early-Season Struggles

Klay Thompson Warriors

Getty Klay Thompson looks on during a game between the Golden State Warriors and the Phoenix Suns.

There’s no sugar-coating the situation — the Golden State Warriors had some major problems coming right out of the gate this season. The youth movement largely failed to integrate itself as a key component to a winning cause, the bench brigade as a whole was faltering on an epic scale and the Dubs’ D was suddenly pudding soft.

Meanwhile, a number of Warriors who were either A) important pieces to last year’s title run or B) being counted on to replace key cogs for a run this year, were running into big-time problems as individuals.

Chief among them was Klay Thompson who has, at times, looked more like a guy who missed 900-plus days due to injury than he did last year (when he was actually making the comeback). More recently, though, the five-time All-Star has been tickling the twine like the Splash Bro of old.

Over the three appearances preceding Friday’s showdown with the Utah Jazz, he averaged a team-best 26.3 PPG on 55.1% from the field and 56.7% from deep. And, according to Thompson himself, tuning out the noise on social media played a role in the turnaround.

Thompson Sounds Off on Getting Trolled

Chuck Talks about Klay Thompson's Struggles – Inside the NBA | November 1, 2022📌 Follow our Instagram: instagram.com/houseofhighlights 📌 Follow our TikTok: tiktok.com/@houseofhighlights 📌 Follow our Facebook: facebook.com/houseofhighlight #HouseofHighlights #NBA2022-11-02T04:58:38Z

After going through shootaround in preparation for the Dubs’ bout with the Jazz, Thompson confessed that the online chatter regarding the current state of his game had impacted him in a negative way.

“I have so much more time on my hands,” he said, via the Mercury News. “On social media looking at the comments, I learned if you lurk you’re going to get hurt.”

Of course, the criticism hasn’t just come from social media. One of Thompson’s hardwood idols famously sounded off about his on-court struggles late last month. Namely, Hall of Famer turned TNT studio analyst Charles Barkley, who said the following about the Warriors wing:

“There was a time when Klay Thompson was the best two-way guard in the NBA, and he’s not the same guy. And that’s because of injuries. Now, is he done? No, I don’t think he’s done. I think he’s slowing down and it’s catching up with him.”

Thompson later said that Barkley’s comments hurt him on a deeper level. Fast-forward to now, though, and the baller looks intent on not allowing any outside commentary to have an effect on his game.

“I don’t know what I was thinking, my 12th year in the league. I’ve been through this before. But I had a moment of weakness. But learning to focus on the games and days, not looking too far ahead. You’ll enjoy the run so much more. That’s what I’ve been doing the last couple weeks rather than after a game, going on social media and checking your mentions.”

Thompson on Poole’s Early-Season Struggles

Klay isn’t the only one who has been a little bit off to begin the campaign. Jordan Poole has seen his scoring average drop nearly three points from 18.5 PPG in 2021-22 to 15.7 PPG this season. Meanwhile, he’s shooting just 40.7% from the floor and 31.3% from deep.

That kind of drop-off would be enough to warrant some chatter on its own, but the situation has been exacerbated by the fact that Poole just put his signature on a $140 million contract extension.

For his part, Thompson is confident that Poole will right the ship.

“I just tell him I’ve been there, many times,” Thompson said Friday, via NBC Sports Bay Area, when asked about the advice he’s given Poole. “Every season that’s happened to me. I just tell him to play with great intentions, play with that great confidence and he will have a 36-point game again on 20 shots… He’s too great of a player not to.”

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