After two years away from the court, Klay Thompson hasn’t lost his killer touch.
The Golden State Warriors star is growing ever-closer to his return to the NBA after a pair of back-to-back season-ending injuries, and has been honing his game with the G League Santa Cruz Warriors. Thompson flashed some of his skills in a scrimmage and, while it might have not been the pressure of a Game 6, the Splash Brother showed that his game looks just as good as ever.
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Thompson Hits Big Three-Pointer
Thompson is in what look to be the final steps of his year-long rehab from a torn Achilles suffered just before the start of last season. He was cleared to return to full-contact practices late last week and was sent to the team’s G League affiliate in Santa Cruz to get more time on the court and some active scrimmages.
Thompson has already made a big impact. In a video shared on Tuesday, he was seen hitting a game-winning three-pointer in a scrimmage with the Sea Dubs.
Thompson made a big impression on Santa Cruz head coach Seth Cooper, who noted that the NBA All-Star couldn’t miss a shot.
“He’s cleared for full go, so everything we did was full 100 percent he was going,” Cooper said. “There was no holding him back. There was no pulling back, it was just letting him go and letting him experience playing all out. He did that, and he looked really good doing it… I think he made his first 18 shots.”
Klay Can’t Wait
While Thompson has maintained a positive attitude through nearly 29 consecutive months of rehab starting with the torn ACL he suffered in the 2019 NBA Finals, the emotions caught up with him a bit this week. Following a Warriors win over the Portland Trail Blazers on November 26, Thompson remained on the bench for more than 30 minutes, draping a towel over his head.
Teammate Draymond Green came over to sit with Thompson, and said afterward that it’s tough for him to get so close to playing after so long away from the court.
“After almost three full calendar years off the floor, it’s tough,” Green said, via Marcus Thompson of The Athletic. “So we sympathize with him. But we have to be right there. Continue to push him. Continue to get him to the finish line, or the start line, as I said before. … It’s beautiful to watch him conquer this journey that he’s been on. He’s conquering it.”
Warriors general manager Bob Myers said all was well with Thompson by the time he called to catch up with him the following day.
“He picked up and first thing he says is, ‘Beautiful day, huh?’ And then I knew he was OK,” Myers said, 95.7 The Game’s “The Morning Roast. “He said, ‘I’m thinking about getting out on the boat.’ He was talking about taking it down to Santa Cruz, but it was too far. I knew at that point he was fine.”
Thompson is on track to return to the team sometime in the week before Christmas.