Thompson was said to have been working out in California as the injury took place which was just hours before the NBA’s 2020 Draft was scheduled to begin. The injury will, unfortunately, force Thompson to miss the entirety of the upcoming 2020 – 2021 NBA season, a huge blow for a Warriors team who were believed to be a title contender.
Per Wojnarowski, Dr. Richard Ferkel performed the surgery in Los Angeles.
Dr. Ferkel might be a familiar name to many Warriors fans. In 2012, Dr. Ferkel performed surgery on 2x MVP and Warriors star guard Steph Curry when he was debilitated by ankle issues and needed an arthroscopic procedure, his second ankle surgery. He’s largely credited as being the person who corrected those as well as Philadelphia 76er Joel Embiid’s previous foot injury, and current Los Angeles Laker Wes Matthews when he tore his Achilles.
Warriors Domination ‘Over’ Per Hall of Famer
As stated, Thompson was going to be an integral part of the Warriors this year. Having won 15 games in the 2019 – 2020 NBA season Golden State would have had all three of their stars, Thompson, Curry, and former Defensive Player of the Year Draymond Green, back in uniform and healthy.
This is in addition to adding former #1 overall pick from the 2014 NBA Draft Andrew Wiggins and the #2 overall selection in the 2020 Draft, James Wiseman. By all accounts, the team had the opportunity to extend their stars’ window for a championship while building their future. Yet, this injury changes all of it. NFL Hall of Fame player and Fox Sports 1’s Undisputed co-host Shannon Sharpe believes the days of the Warriors annihilating the NBA’s western conference are now “over.”
“The days of 67-15, the days of 73-9 Golden State Warriors, that’s over. That’s not happening again. The days of them just running wild in the west that’s over. Even with a healthy Klay, they were never going to be that again. Now obviously, you lose a guy that’s the ultimate 3 and D guy. He can go get you 20+, he can go get you 60. But he can D up. He would always take the toughest defensive assignment, that’s why I always thought he was the best two-way player Skip. What he was doing, he was getting Kawhi, KD, he would get LeBron on a nightly basis, and hey Klay we still need you to get up 22 [points a game]. And he was doing it.”
Curry Believes Warriors Can Compete With ‘Anyone’
Despite what people outside of the Warriors organization and their fans think, many still hold faith in their deep-rooted mantra, “We Believe”. Among those is Curry who believes this Warriors team, despite Thompson’s absence, will be able to compete with “anyone” in the NBA.
“It’s going to hard at first, for sure. We’ve been waiting seven months to get back out there,” Curry said. “Not seeing [Thompson] on the court, at first, is going to be weird. But I think we’ve done a really good job in the offseason with James and our draft picks and in the free agency pool to put together a really solid roster. We’re going to have to learn a lot really quickly, and we will need a full commitment from everybody.
“We know we can compete with anyone in the league. It’s kind of crazy. We know how great Klay is. Don’t get me wrong. But we hear the chatter. ‘It’s the end of for us. This year is a wash. What are we going to do in the future?’ But we are in the moment right now. It’s kind of refreshing being in that category as guys that are chasing. We know [the Los Angeles Lakers] are the defending champs. We got to beat them. We’re ready for it.”
With the now lowered expectations the Warriors have this season, they stand ready and able to shock the league if they can begin the year on a hot streak. Among them, Curry may be able to put together another MVP campaign with how much freedom he will have to run the show. His first two MVPs were with Thompson healthy and sharing the ball in their free-flowing offense. Now having to shoulder the load as the megastar, he has the capability of unleashing and blazing defenses with his play unlike we have ever seen before.