Superstar Golden State Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson has suffered a season-ending achilles tear in his right foot. The injury occurred during a workout in Southern California on Wednesday night and was confirmed on Thursday morning via MRI, according to the team.
Because of the kind of tear that occurred in Thompson’s right achilles tendon, doctors have told the 30-year-old that he can fully expect a complete recovery, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
While playing with several other NBA players in a pickup game in Los Angeles, Thompson began feeling pain in his right calf after landing on that leg, sources told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne. Greg Lawrence, who represents Thompson, told ESPN that his client will be ready to go full bore when the 2021-2022 season rolls around.
Warriors general manager Bob Myers had trouble trying to stay positive when discussing the situation.
“Klay has a strength of will, but right now it’s a tough day for him,” Myers said. “It hurts. He’ll get to a place, I think, where he’s on the road. But right now, like you or I or anybody, this is a tough day for him to hear that news. It’s hard. It’s tough.”
Despite the deflating feeling of the Thompson injury news, Myers and the organization have not wallowed and are already in the process of finalizing a deal that would net them Kelly Oubre Jr. as a sort of replacement for Thompson this season.
Oubre is an impressive young offensive talent—but he’s no Thompson, that’s for sure. While he has received universal acclaim for his Legolas-like accuracy from beyond the arc, Thompson is also a great defender whose effort and IQ on that end were sorely missed last season. Oubre can score pretty well (he put up 18.7 points a game last season), so Thompson’s defensive prowess is really where the Warriors are going to miss him.
The worst part of it all is that Thompson sat out last season because of injury too. The L.A. native suffered a torn ACL in his left knee during Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals, and he spent all of last season rehabbing that knee.
He was finally back and ready to take the NBA floor again for the first time 18 months, but alas, now the Dubs will spend another full campaign without their second-best player. Not to mention all the futures bettors that put down on the Warriors to win the next NBA title at +650, (888sport) odds which have now skyrocketed to +3000 since Thompson went down.
It wasn’t just the Warriors that wanted to see him back out there either. Thompson’s cool demeanor, impressive skill, and genuine love for the game have made him “universally beloved” around the league, as one opposing coach told Myers recently.
“How your peers feel about you in life I think says more than anything else. And I really believe that,” Myers said. “And I think that he is admired within. He’s admired without. And you can’t put in words what he means to our team, what he means to our fans, our coaching staff, his teammates.”
Despite the colossal loss of a player of Thompson’s caliber—the nine-year veteran is a five-time All-Star selection, two-time All-NBA Third Team selection, and one-time NBA All-Defensive second team choice—Myers has no intention of going down the same road they went last year, though he did acknowledge that this will be a tough obstacle to overcome.
“I can’t sit here and say I feel good. [But] I have confidence in our players. I have confidence in our coaches. I have confidence in our ownership. We’re going to keep moving. We’re never going to stop,” ensured Myers. “But to be truthful, it hurts. It hurts me, and I know it hurts our organization.”