Kerr: Klay Thompson “Unlikely” To Play This Season

3:24pm: Speaking today to reporters, including Anthony Slater of The Athletic and ESPN’s Nick Friedell (Twitter links), Kerr clarified that he wasn’t announcing any news on Thompson, and that it’s still possible the All-Star guard will be back this season. Kerr explained that he was just doing the math on typical ACL recoveries.

I probably opened up a can of worms with that comment,” the Warriors’ head coach said, per Friedell (Twitter link). “… We’ll leave the door open at the end of the year and see what happens.”

9:23am: The Warriors have ruled out sharpshooter Klay Thompson until at least the All-Star break as he recovers from a torn ACL, and head coach Steve Kerr doesn’t sound like he’s counting on Thompson to return at that point. Speaking to Logan Murdock of NBC Sports Bay Area, Kerr said it’s “unlikely” that Thompson will play this season.

“You have to look at it realistically,” Kerr said. “I had an ACL [tear] in college, and I missed a whole season. Generally, an ACL for a basketball player is a full-year recovery, and if it’s a full year for Klay, that puts them out for the season.

“We’ve kind of left the door open in case the rehab goes perfectly and the doctors say he can go. But the reality is, on April 1, that’s the nine-month mark. … April versus nine months post-op for an ACL.”

Thompson’s recovery timeline could hinge in part on how the Warriors perform this season. If the team is in position to qualify for the postseason and Thompson makes good progress in his rehab, it’s easy to imagine him pushing to make it back by season’s end to participate in the playoffs. However, Kerr makes it clear that the Dubs will play it safe with their newly-extended star, preparing for the possibility that he won’t be back until 2020/21.

“We have to prepare our young guys to fill that role behind him,” Kerr said. “And when he gets back, whenever that is, hopefully these young guys now are developed and in the rotation and ready to really be contributors on a playoff team and we can get better.”

Kristaps Porzingis was the last NBA star to suffer a torn ACL. While every player’s body is different and the Knicks and Mavericks likely treated Porzingis’ 7’3″ frame with an abundance of caution during his rehab process, it’s worth noting that the big man sat out the entire 2018/19 season after tearing his ACL in early February 2018.

As Murdock points out, Zach LaVine and Jabari Parker were able to return a little earlier after suffering torn ACLs, but they were still out for 11 months and a year, respectively. An 11-month recovery timetable would sideline Thompson until mid-May, and Golden State’s season may well be over by that point.

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22 thoughts on “Kerr: Klay Thompson “Unlikely” To Play This Season

  1. amk3510

    Replacing Klay and KD with Dlo…. Yup this Warriors team is just as good as previous years and will still run away with the West like their fans say.

    • I don’t know where you’re getting that from not a single Warriors fan I know or have heard says that. Not a single one.

      • amk3510

        You haven’t been here very long then. Look at previous Warrior stories.

        • arc89

          Please you were caught in your own lie. I have not seen 1 GSW fan say that GSW are the best team in the division right now. I have them as a 5th or 6th seed in the west. To much turnover right now to even guess where they place. They will get off to a slow start and you will be the first one here saying i told you they stink.

          • amk3510

            The only “I told you so” from me early will be when the Lakers are good, since a lot of the same people said LAL will stink too. Warriors I told you so isn’t coming until the playoffs. Let me guess you will tell me no one said that about the Lakers either. There were plenty of people taking trash in the summer, the season is here and the receipts are out.

            • arc89

              please laker fans have been talking trash all summer. You are here talking trash about GSW on a article not about Lakers. Last night Clippers showed why they are probably the #1 seed in the west. They did it without one of their best players. lakers are middle of the pack team. That is not trash talk but reality.

          • kenleyfornia2

            I said after the finals that Golden State would be a #6 seed in 2020 and the fans attacked me like a shark with blood in the water. Some of (not all) their fans have said those type of things. If you want proof look about a month ago when they asked who will win the pacific division.

            • I can remember myself saying around a 6 seed. And I talk about the Warriors almost as much as anybody on here. Heck now I’m thinking after watching them in pre-season they might not even make the playoffs !! The west is TOUGH.

              But they could do really well and Alec Burks Glenn Robinson Willie cauley-stein could play out of their minds and the Warriors get a 4 seed. Klay comes back and they make noise in the playoffs. That’s best case scenario.

              Like the article says Klay probably sits out, Warriors keep their first round pick and try it again next season. They’ll have a little more flexibility with the cap I think. They won’t be hard capped/ Hands tied.

    • phils phanatic

      i havent heard a single fan say that but i dont think u give the best shooter in history quite enough credit. steph-dlo-green looks just as good as anybody else’s top 3. where they’re really pressed this year is the lack of depth

      • Yes I hear you, and I think that lack of depth on the wing is what will hurt. Iguodala Durant even Livingston a little bit at 6-7, that’s a lot to lose in experience and skill.

        Warriors are replacing them with Glenn Robinson Alec Burks and rookie Jordan Poole. There’s going to be slippage probably a six to eight seed maybe even miss the playoffs.

  2. Thronson5

    I think they knew this would be a rebuild type of year but they had to sign someone like D-Lo because they couldn’t go into this new arena just roll over and have it be a complete rebuild. I have said all along I didn’t think Klay would be back this year and even with or without this news today I believe he won’t be back. They still hVe Curry, still have Green who can score when needed and is a shut down defender and the heart of that team. I don’t think they’ll be terrible, I think D-Lo isn’t a good fit thought and might take him time to mesh with them but I could be wrong. He will still score on certain nights but he doesn’t play D and I just don’t know how he will be for them. I do think they had this planned to get him to save face a bit, he’s not Klay, will be decent I think and is better than playing with a rookie or someone off the bench, obviously, but I just don’t think this team will make the playoffs and if they do it’ll be barely. I don’t think they’ll be a total wags with the guys they have but they clearly aren’t the team they were before. The one thing I think is gettin rid of KD might actually be good for them when they get Klay back, I feel there was major tension with him and Green and not just with those two, 2 years ago there was a comment made made about a lot going on on in the locker room which made the season harder to get through than people even knew. Lot of stuff was going on with that team. I also think the Warriors were very smart adding D-Lo because they can trade him and possibly even add some draft picks to move down in the draft or to get a player needed to really fill that void of KD’s talent. They’ll be back when Klay is back next season. Green, Curry and Klay sling with whoever they get for D-Lo bedsheets I do think they trade him (no way be fits on the team when Klay is back) and they have a great coach and coaching staff.

    • mitchrapp

      Too long a comment to waste time reading, but Kerr’s a bum and golden state time is over.

      • arc89

        Why is Kerr a bum? Could it be because some reality star doesn’t like him because Kerr is smarter than him?

  3. x%sure

    ACL is at least a year for a player who plays D and gives max effort. GSW made an investment & I doubt will leave it up to Klay.

    • I think it depends where they finish. If they think they have a shot to advance in the playoffs then Klay comes back. If they’re a 7 seed or 8 seed and first-round exit looks likely, Klay stays home.

      • sleepyfloyd

        You’re logic is wrong since as a person before posted the reality of an ACL to a max effort dude like Klay.

        He could play if it didn’t matter much and ease into it.

        It’s a lot different to throw him in against western conference wings in the heat of a play off run near the end of the season.

        • So are you saying he sits out the entire year regardless? Because he’s too intense and the situation would be intense so he better not play?

            • If doctors say he’s ready to go and it’s March and he’s ready to go and he’s been scrimmaging for 2 months? Yes I would. It’s not Achilles, it’s the ACL. 9 months, ready to go. If the Warriors are a 4 seed playing well, then definitely.

  4. harden-westbrook-mvps

    Golden State is the last team to play their opener this season and they’re being completely destroyed on national television. Their dynasty is over.

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