Klay Thompson Suffers Torn ACL

A Warriors star suffered a major injury for a second straight game on Thursday night, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link), who hears from agent Greg Lawrence that Klay Thompson has been diagnosed with a torn ACL in his left knee.

It’s a brutal turn of events for Thompson and the Warriors, who saw Kevin Durant go down in Game 5 on Monday with a ruptured right Achilles. Like Durant, Thompson had been dealing with another injury in the same leg, having missed Game 3 due to a hamstring issue. However, there’s no indication that the ACL injury was related.

Thompson suffered the injury during the third quarter of Thursday’s game when he was fouled by Danny Green as he attempted to score on a fast break. Klay landed awkwardly on his left leg and had to be helped off the court, only to jog back onto the floor a moment later to knock down his two free throws. After making those free throws, he was removed from the game and was unable to return, eventually leaving the arena on crutches.

Despite being sidelined for Game 3, Thompson may have been the Warriors’ most valuable overall player in the NBA Finals. He played a significant role on the defensive end guarding Kawhi Leonard and was also Golden State’s most efficient scorer, knocking down an impressive 54.1% of his shots in the series, including a scorching 58.5% mark (24-for-41) from beyond the arc.

Thompson and Durant had been on track to be two of the biggest prizes in free agency this summer before these injuries took their offseasons in entirely new directions. Unlike Durant, Thompson doesn’t have a player option for 2019/20, so he’ll definitely reach the open market on June 30, while KD’s decision remains up in the air.

[RELATED: Opting In Considered A “Last Resort” For Durant]

Thompson has long been viewed as a virtual lock to re-sign with the Warriors, and there’s no reason to think that won’t still be the case. However, his injury will create a fascinating dilemma for the Western Conference champions. If the club brings back both Thompson and Durant, it would result in a massive luxury-tax bill for a roster featuring two stars who will miss most or all of the 2019/20 season.

As Anthony Slater of The Athletic observes (via Twitter), ACL recoveries typically take at least eight months, so Thompson appears likely to be on the shelf until at least the All-Star break next season, though it’s too soon to count on a specific timeline.

[RELATED: The Impact Of A Torn ACL On An NBA Player]

If the Warriors plan on heading into the 2019/20 season with one or two injured stars, it could impact how other Western teams approach the coming offseason. Rival contenders may be a little more aggressive if they sense that Golden State won’t be quite the same threat that the club has been over the last five years.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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82 thoughts on “Klay Thompson Suffers Torn ACL

  1. schnoah

    Damn… two huge FA targets in KD and Thompson now likely to miss most or all of next season

      • The owner will absolutely give Klay the max contract. He’s done everything The Last 5 Years and when it counted Klay gave all he had.

  2. Tough break. I’m not a GS fan, but I like Klay. Also, Mark Jackson sucks and needs to be fired. He ruins the broadcast.

    • JonnyLucas

      It’s no coincidence that when the warriors fired Jackson and brought in Kerr that they immediately became a championship team.

      • jjd002

        Lol. Kerr was gifted one of the best teams of all time. Jackson would’ve won too. You’re severely overestimating how much a coach affects a game.

        • Still have to manage the egos, and Kerr learned from the best – Jackson and Popovich. As for Jackson, he was terrible. Why do you think he hasn’t received any offers?

        • Jackson deserves a lot of the credit for bringing the Warriors from the depths of 20-win Seasons 23 wins, to respectability and 50-win Seasons.

          He did it by preaching defense and team unity and hard work.

          But the offense was stagnant. The Warriors needed Kerr and his expertise at motion offense and ball movement and double and triple screens for the shooters. Mark Jackson didn’t have any of that.

          • Jackson did a lot of work setting the foundation but Kerr making Curry accountable for playing good team defense and the offense built around motion took this team to a championship level

      • You also realize when Kerr was out, Walton was winning with them. So what was the point again?

        • JonnyLucas

          Meh… they were two time champs at that point with KD… THAT team didn’t need to be coached up.

    • Well the truth is Warriors were the under dogs in the finals with all the injuries. Not sure why so many fans are upset at jackson when he said the obvious. If Thompson doesn’t get hurt we would be talking game 7 and how the raptors will bounce back after losing 2 games.

      • Z-A

        If I was 6’10 instead of 6’4 I’d be in the NBA. If Kawhi didn’t get 3 lucky bounces the Sixers would have won the championship.

        • Plenty of guys 6-4 and under in the NBA. You thought you had to be 6-10 to get in?

          • Z-A

            The list of 6-4 white guys in the league since say 2008 is a smaller list than 6-10.

            • If you’re slow and white and can’t jump at 6-4, you’ll be slow and white and can’t jump at 6-10.

              You won’t be a better player because you’re 6-10.

              Don’t mean to give you a bad time it’s just that I hear that from guys all the time. I’m 6-3 and I’ve had shorter guys tell me “if I was six three I’d be in the NBA” yeah well good luck with that.

              You’re probably saying you’d be in the NBA at 6 10 because you can shoot the Rock. Steve Novak can shoot the ball and very well but he was a very marginal player. Couldn’t really stick around and get minutes.

            • I’ve played against ex-nba retired guys in their 40s and they are still very, very, VERY good. It’s unbelievable how good those guys are.

              That’s why I jump all over people that say “if I was 6-10 I’d be in the NBA.” And I hear it all the time. But usually they’ll say if I was 6 4 I’d be in the NBA.

              • x%sure

                Yeahbut… If you’re 6-10 white and can’t jump, you still have an inside shot to be GM of the Nets.
                Or maybe the Wizrds, if Leonsis gets around to hiring Ferry.

  3. julyn82001

    Great player. Klay will be back to win another championship for the Warriors….

  4. x%sure

    Cousins fouled on purpose so that Klay could be replaced. He either did it on his own or thought the bench called for it, which initially they may have but rescinded. Klay was going to continue playing with that ACL tehr! Did Cousins say no to that?

    • formerlyz

      Well, a lot of times, when you get injured, you can actually play for a while right after it happens. After a small amount of time though, that becomes impossible. But until then, he theoretically could have, although he could have seriously injured himself in other areas

    • braveshomer

      Philip Rivers played a whole playoff game with a torn ACL…everyone’s body is different. But i doubt with all the running and jumping theres no way he would’ve finished it out. What a shame tho

  5. formerlyz

    When he was in the air, I yelled “Oh no.” His leg positioning reminded me all too well

      • Archie M.

        I wish Klay all the best. But you know what’s ironic in the NBA? The meanest dunker, the highest flyer in the game, Vince Carter, never suffered any serious knee or leg or ankle injury. Perhaps he really is “Half-man, Half-amazing”.

  6. Such a shame! I really like Klay, great shooter, great defender, great player. Maybe not the #1 in a competitive team… but boy is he great to watch & a great guy to have in your team, I would love for him to go to Philly or Lakers, it would be such a great fit, but nice for him to stay in The Bay area & be a 1 team man! Just recover well & fast together with KD & be back soon dude, don’t care so much about teams but I absolutely love NBA players!

  7. acarneglia

    Klay literally told Kerr all he needed was a 2 minute rest and he’d be ready to go back in

  8. Luckylefty2

    So does Houston still want to trade all there players now ? Or do they go for one more run ?

    • whiplash

      Good point. I’m sure they’ve already burn some bridges with the players, they may have no choice but to make a deal assuming it’s beneficial for them.

    • Archie M.

      Kobe already said it. Houston can’t win a title with the way they play. The Beard can win all the MVP’s he wants but he will not win a title if he doesn’t tweak the way he plays.

  9. Reflect

    That’s the biggest danger of playing through injuries: that you end up with a bunch of other injuries. I give props to Durant and Klay for taking those risks. But I also respect Kawhis decision to not take that risk and actually become healthy. It just seldom turns out well when one plays through an injury.

  10. Strike Four

    Joey Lightyears is about to trade Draymond+draft picks for AD and sign Kawhi and yall about to get even madder at the Warriors.

    Cant wait for garbage NBA fans online to put asterisks on all GSW titles because they arent a “cool” team like Lakers, Celtics, Knicks, Bulls or Spurs aka the only teams that are “allowed” to win.

    • Down with OBP

      Funny, the only asterisk I keep hearing about from GSW fans is the one they want to put on the Raptors’ championship.

      • You haven’t heard from real basketball fans who are Warrior fans.

        Injuries are part of the game.

        This year, the best team won the championship. Bottom line.

        Signed, Warriors fan

        • Bay Area sports

          Agreed! It was an entertaining series, even though the raptors looked like the better team the entire series. Also, draymond green is the heart and sole of our team. The passion and intensity he brings to the game doesn’t show up on the stat sheet, but it’s critical to the warriors success. I’d be extremely surprised if we traded him

          • jump shot

            In a championship series, if one team is playing major minutes with their scout team the other team SHOULD be better if they’re playing with their “A-team”. That said, if Klay doesn’t go down, we’re looking at a Game 7. Regardless, congrats Raptors!

        • Strike Four

          You can be the better guy all you want, but haters out there still say the KD titles “dont count”

        • Strike Four

          Thing is, they beat the Warriors 3rd string.

          No Klay no KD no GSW, bottom line. Those 2 stay healthy then we’re still playing.

          Toronto fans are the worst in the game and dont deserve this. Sure, they won square, but the refs were not on GSW side all series, so it wasnt fair. Kawhi traveled 100 times a game, Steph couldnt breathe near anyone without getting called for a foul, Draymond’s 3 was a clear 3 etc etc.

          Hey, if Raptors fans are allowed to be lowball trash, then Im allowed to as a 30+ year GSW fan too. They won without an asterisk, but they beat the 3rd string Warriors, not the Hamptons 5 or the HOF 5.

          Doesn’t matter Toronto will barely be .500 next year if they don’t sign Kawhi, who legit looks like the second coming of MJ right now, he’s so awesome, really wish he got to face KD and Klay for all 7 games.

          • I do have to chuckle when somebody says raptors were the better team. If Thompson and Durant healthy Warriors would have easily won.

          • x%sure

            If Irving & Love don’t get injured GSW loses 2015. If CPaul doesn’t get injured GSW loses 2017. Who cares? GSW lost, deal with it.

            Kawhi 2nd coming of MJ no. Kawhi is very hard to stop but does not command the court.

    • whoneedsfacts

      Nobody wants GS draft picks, and Draymond is a third option on a good team. Dream again little dreamer.

  11. Bay Area sports

    Klay Thompson is the epitome of a warrior! I can’t think of a worst guy for this to happen too. A selfless team player who gives 100% every second of every game. Wishing you a quick and successful recovery!

  12. graysondecker

    It’s almost a shame how the media will twist these stories. Waking up the morning after, two different shows have already brought up the fact that Curry was unable to win on his own, with Klay and KD injured, and that hurts his legacy. One man can’t win a championship on his own, no matter how hard he might try. Basketball is a team sport, and Curry’s team fell apart around him. Injuries are part of the game, and those two are major pieces to lose. Curry is one of the best basketball players of this century, but the Raptors are a better team when you subtract two of the Warriors’ all-stars. That shouldn’t hurt the man’s legacy, it just isn’t fair.

    • Bay Area sports

      I couldn’t agree more! After Thompson got injured curry’s Morale dropped significantly. Imagine seeing two of your good friends go down with significant injuries in back to back games. Regardless of the level (nba, college, high school), that is extremely demoralizing. I wasn’t playing , nor do I know these men personally, but even I was affected by those injuries. We need to consider players as humans, not just objects for our amusement

      • graysondecker

        Exactly. The image of Curry slamming the ball off the ground, biting down on his mouth guard, showing obvious frustration, it shows how much pain he was in, in that moment. He’s one of the best point guards ever, and he revolutionized the way the game is played, yet his legacy takes a hit because of a loss in which he lost two of his best teammates and friends? If Dennis Rodman and Scottie Pippen got injured in the 95-96 finals, Jordan and the Bulls probably don’t beat Seattle. It’s not about the player. Not in this situation.

          • graysondecker

            I don’t think Stephen A. Smith believes half the stuff he says. He things just to stir up controversy. It might as well be in his contract.

          • formerlyz

            Just tell yourself that they’re all idiots, and their opinions dont matter. They’re the ones causing all the stupidity, with their garbage narratives. The only narrative that matters is the one you will remember, which is hopefully, the truth

    • How many championships did LeBron win on his own? I would submit the number is 0.

    • Strike Four

      Finally someone sees thru these UTTER GARBAGE espn narratives where only 4 teams are allowed to win and everyone else is fake/need 1 player etc

      • formerlyz

        Remember those are the same people that called the team that led the league in paint scoring a jump shooting team, and claimed they weren’t good enough to win, and then decided they were too good. When I picked them to win the day lebron went back to Cleveland, and never waivered, I was an idiot, but then they were too unfair of a team. Lol none of these people know anything about the actual game of basketball, and if they do, they dont actually say anything of substance. If they did, they would have had Toronto in this position from the moment they made the trade, instead of continuing to call it a “bold move.”

  13. snotrocket

    It was fun while it lasted. Just happy I got to experience an extended run of greatness from a team I watched be pretty bad since the 80’s. Thanks for the memories, fellas.

  14. Stoop Down Low

    Wear and tear is a huge factor in evaluating FAs. Steve Kerr said he didn’t know if the injuries resulted from Thompson and Durant playing 100 plus games five years in a row. I took that to mean he does know and that’s a factor. Coincidentally or not, Kawhi has been rested (comparatively) for two seasons, and look how he played. Any team in the market for players has to look at wear and tear (that is, susceptibility to further injury) before committing big money. Right now the Butlers and Harrises and Gordons are looking better all the time.

  15. Thuggababyy

    I have been a raptors fan my entire life but that honestly sucked seeing him go down like that

  16. hoosierhysteria

    GSW in trouble w/o KLay & KD next year. Who will make the big move to win the west? Fakers? Rockets? Clippers? Denver? Portland? It’s wide open.

      • whoneedsfacts

        Nope, his options are limited. His picks are bad his salary cap is full if he even tried to Lee one of Klay or KD. His other pieces have little value outside of the two guys he needs to keep. Think with your head not your heart.

  17. Klay deserves a ton of credit for what he showed in that game. The shame of losing him is that even if they do resign both him and KD it’ll likely be a mediocre season. Greens a FA the next year and likely won’t be worth the money he gets, and Iggy whose been a constant pro wastes one of the final years of his career. Dubs will be an incredibly expensive team who will never be the same again

  18. Z-A

    A smart GM doesn’t waste 175m in lux tax and a season of Curry.

    Draymond Iggy Picks for AD and Hill. Dump Hill + 2s for cap space. Renounce Looney Klay and KD. Max offer Kawhi. Resign Boogie.

    • whoneedsfacts

      That doesn’t work on multiple levels. But Pels definitely won’t make that deal, Draymond is a great third option on successful team, no so much for a rebuild and wants big money after next year. Iggy useless for rebuild. Picks would be late 20s and again fsrily useless.

  19. jump shot

    I’ve seen comments the last few years from nba players that pretty much say GS is the bar… the best team in the league. Even a Toronto player slipped and said it on-court last nite AFTER the game.
    Despite winning the championship, I doubt there’s very many of their peers who think Toronto is the best team in the league. Unlike when GS has won it, the rest of the league feels like its wide open next year, not based on Kawhi and Toronto’s status, but because Durant and Thompson will be out.

        • x%sure

          It said Toronto is champ!

          College football relies on subjective opinion– polls– to its detriment. Well they’re up to a 4-team tournament now, hooray.
          Only top 4 in the NBA would have excluded the Cavs all 3 of their runnerup years! Boo

  20. Archie M.

    With how things turned out this season for Kawhi, Klay & Kevin Durant, haters now can see the wisdom & the truth in Kawhi’s decision to refuse to play for the Spurs when he was still recovering from an injury. “Prudence is the better part of valor” sometimes, as in the case of Kawhi. See what happened to Klay & KD when they forced the issue & didn’t allow their bodies to completely heal (also happened to D-Rose years ago)? They just ended up making their situation worse. Those kind of injuries can even be “career killers”.

    • Z-A

      Didn’t trust the staff. Look at what the Eagles did they dismissed the entire medical staff b/c their players didn’t trust the staff – they say 4-6 weeks and it’s 9-12 weeks really. So the Spurs didn’t back their player.

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