Warriors coach Steve Kerr revealed that Klay Thompson initially balked at the prospect of being the team’s sixth man, he told ESPN’s Kendra Andrews. Thompson yelled at Kerr and some members of the staff during a meeting prior to the All-Star break before later returning to apologize.
“It was not an easy conversation,” Kerr said. “This is maybe the hardest part about getting further away from our prime. It’s just, after 12 years [of Thompson starting], it wasn’t easy. And still moving forward, it’s not going to be easy. But I told him, ‘If you really embrace it, you can help your team win.'”
Thompson said the All-Star break helped ease his mind over the coaching staff’s plan.
“It was having a complete reset, a huge mental reset. It helped so much,” he said.
Thompson stated in an interview with The Athletic’s Sam Amick that his new role wouldn’t play into his decision during free agency this summer. Thompson, who is eligible for a four-year extension, remains open to a shorter-term deal, according to Andrews.
We have more from the Pacific Division:
- The Suns had three late scratches on Thursday against Houston, according to Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic. Bradley Beal missed his fifth straight game due to left hamstring injury management. Eric Gordon sat out with left groin soreness. They were listed as questionable on Wednesday. Nassir Little didn’t suit up due to left knee inflammation after not being on the initial injury report.
- Clippers coach Tyronn Lue had a health scare when he was coaching Cleveland due to stress and poor eating and sleeping habits. He’s learned from that experience and has a much healthier diet and exercise plan, he told Andscape’s Marc J. Spears. “I’ve been working out. Eating better. I still have my moments. [I’m] eating less. It’s been good,” Lue said. “(Strength and conditioning coach Daniel Shapiro) has done a good job of staying on me because I can stray away. I’m just doing 20 to 30 minutes per day … Now I’m about 208 [pounds]. Back [in Cleveland] I was 241. I can’t believe I got that big.”
- LeBron James sparked the biggest fourth-quarter comeback of his career against the Clippers on Wednesday in the two teams’ final matchup as cohabitants of Crypto.com Arena. The Lakers rallied from 21 points down with the aid of three three-pointers early in the fourth from James, who finished with 34 points. “It’s just a zone, and you can’t really describe it,” James said, per ESPN’s Dave McMenamin. “You wish you could stay in it forever, but obviously it checks out once the game ends. But during it, you don’t feel anything. It’s just like a superpower feel.“