Magic’s Reported Offer Increases Warriors’ Odds to Re-Sign Klay Thompson

Warriors star Klay Thompson

Getty Klay Thompson #11 of the Golden State Warriors reacts after missing a shot against the Sacramento Kings.

The odds of Klay Thompson returning to the Golden State Warriors increased after Yahoo Sports’ Jake Fischer reported that the Orlando Magic are only willing to offer a short-term deal lower than the five-time All-Star rejected last summer.

“Orlando appears to have an appetite to only offer a short-term deal, similar to the two-year, above-market contract the Magic awarded Joe Ingles a season ago,” Fischer wrote on June 21.

Ingles signed a one-plus-one deal worth $22 million with the Magic last year.

Fischer added that “Orlando could very well exercise the 2024-25 option on Ingles’ deal” to save some cap room to extend Jalen Suggs, whose rookie extension could be based on what Immanuel Quickley receives likely from Toronto this offseason.

“With that said, let’s say the Magic prove to be open to something similar to Bruce Brown’s contract last summer, when the Pacers inked the former Nuggets swingman to a two-year, $45 million deal, the second season being a team option. That number would be below what Thompson declined from Golden State prior to the 2023-24 campaign, sources said, and would not come close to the four years and $78 million Sacramento plans to give [Malik] Monk. Thompson is also believed by league sources to want a deal of at least three seasons,” Fischer wrote.

Thompson turned down the Warriors’ two-year, $48 million offer last offseason, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported in December 2023.

“Contract negotiations between Thompson and the Warriors stalled over salary and length of an extension being discussed. I’m told the Warriors were offering Thompson a two-year deal in the range of $48 million before the season,” Charania wrote.

Klay Thompson To Test Free Agency

The latest intel on Magic’s offseason plans came after Charania and The Athletic’s Warriors beat reporter Anthony Slater reported that Thompson will test free agency.

“For the first time in Thompson’s career, he has shown an appetite to explore external options,” Charania and Slater wrote on June 17. “There remains mutual interest between Thompson and the Orlando Magic, according to league sources. The Warriors have made clear they want to bring Thompson back at the right price and in the right role.”

Aside from the Magic, several teams with cap room who can outbid the Warriors are the Philadelphia 76ers, Oklahoma City Thunder, Detroit Pistons, Utah Jazz and San Antonio Spurs.

The 34-year-old Thompson is coming off one of his worst seasons in the NBA as his role fluctuated from starting to coming off the bench and then starting again in the final 10 games of a lost season.

Thompson averaged 17.9 points per game on 43.2% shooting and 38.7% 3-point shooting.

Restrictive New CBA Impacts Warriors’ Offer

With an expensive roster not built for a championship run, the Warriors are reluctant to offer Thompson more than two years because of the restrictive new Collective Bargaining Agreement that cripples second-apron teams’ ability to make meaningful trades.

“They do not want to get locked into a situation where they’re sitting a bad Klay Thompson contract, even for one year,” one NBA executive told Heavy Sports’ Sean Deveney. “There was a time when maybe you could do that, you could have a bad contract on the books to pay a guy who had helped the team for so long. But not under this new CBA.

“They are going to try very hard to get under the tax and they can’t have a bad deal sitting there putting them back over in a couple of years.”