Klay Thompson

Injury/Protocol Notes: Reddish, Durant, Thompson, Raptors

Hawks forward Cam Reddish reportedly received a PRP injection earlier this month and was ruled out for at least two weeks at that time, per general manager Travis Schlenk. However, it sounds like Reddish’s absence will extend well beyond that window.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Reddish has an initial recovery timeline of four-to-six weeks following the non-surgical procedure to address his right Achilles soreness. Even if we assume one of those weeks has already passed, it still sounds like we won’t see Reddish back on the court until sometime in April.

Here are a few more updates from around the NBA on players who are injured or in the league’s health and safety protocols:

  • Nets star Kevin Durant is expected to miss another week or two as the team takes a cautious approach to his left hamstring strain, sources tell Charania. Durant has now been on the shelf for over a month, but it hasn’t slowed down Brooklyn at all — the team has won 10 of its last 11 games.
  • As we relayed on Sunday, Warriors sharpshooter Klay Thompson is aiming to return early next season from his Achilles tear. However, he admitted that he’s not expecting to look like his old self right away. I’ll be honest, I don’t expect to come back balls-to-the-wall, 38 minutes a night, guarding the best player, running around 100 screens,” Thompson said (video link via Anthony Slater of The Athletic). “I’m going to get to that point. I guarantee that. But… it might be 20 minutes to start the season… We’ll see where I’m at. This is usually a 12-month process with the Achilles and that’ll take me to mid-November.”
  • Raptors head coach Nick Nurse expects his five players in the health and safety protocols – Fred VanVleet, Pascal Siakam, OG Anunoby, Patrick McCaw, and Malachi Flynn – to all return at some point this week, according to Doug Smith of The Toronto Star, who says some of those players are out of quarantine and doing work in the team’s gym.

Western Notes: Rubio, Edwards, McCollum, Nowell, Thompson

Timberwolves veteran Ricky Rubio praised rookie teammate Anthony Edwards and his toughness during the highs and lows of the season so far, Chris Hine of the Star Tribune writes.

Edwards, who was drafted by the team No. 1 overall last year, has shown flashes of potential during his first campaign. The 19-year-old is currently holding per-game averages of 15.4 points, 4.1 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 38 contests, though he’s shooting just 38% from the floor.

“When you’re young, every game and every situation it seems like it’s the end of the world sometimes when it’s not working,” Rubio said. “But his character is special. I said it from day one, I think we have a gem here. We have something that — he’s going to be really good in this league.”

Here are some other notes from the Western Conference tonight:

  • Blazers star CJ McCollum is hoping to return next week from a broken left foot, Jason Quick of The Athletic writes. “Friday’s workout went well; how I expected it to go,” McCollum said. “I’ll be back soon, as long as everything continues to go the way it’s been going.” McCollum, who has averaged 26.7 points per game in 13 contests this season, has been sidelined since January 16.
  • Timberwolves guard Jaylen Nowell received an expanded role in the team’s game against the Blazers on Saturday, Chris Hine of the Star Tribune writes. Nowell scored 17 points and grabbed four rebounds in the loss, playing the final minutes despite starting the contest on the bench. “I’m just focused on being aggressive whenever I catch it, making sure I can make a play,” said Nowell, who recently spoke to our Ben Stinar about his impressive season to date. “The one difference that I might say would be when I’m initiating offense, making sure I get guys in spots, making sure I keep the ball moving, making sure the ball doesn’t get stagnant. That’s probably the only difference when I’m in with that second unit rather than the first.”
  • Warriors star Klay Thompson hopes to return early next season from a torn Achilles’ tendon, as relayed by The Athletic. “Definitely. Could be a few weeks after [opening night]. Could be a month after,” Thompson acknowledged. “But definitely geared toward early in the season.” Thompson is a five-time All-Star and hasn’t played since June of 2019 due his Achilles’ injury and a torn ACL.

USA Basketball Expands Finalist List for Olympic Roster

Fifteen players have been added to the list of finalists for the U.S. Olympic Men’s Basketball Team, USA Basketball announced today in a press release. The group will eventually be pared down to 12 players who will participate in the Olympic Games, which are set for July 23 to August 8 in Tokyo.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich will serve as coach for the U.S. team, with Warriors coach Steve Kerr, Villanova coach Jay Wright and former Hawks coach Lloyd Pierce as his assistants.

No tryouts will be held this year. Instead, USA Basketball will choose the final roster by early summer. Training camp is scheduled to being in early July before the conclusion of the NBA playoffs.

“With the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics from 2020 to 2021, it’s important that we continue to remain flexible and consider all players who can contribute to our efforts to field the best USA team possible,” USA Basketball men’s national team managing director Jerry Colangelo said. “These additions we are announcing today will help ensure that we are doing that. Having a larger player pool than what we normally have is critical because of all of the uncertainties we face about availability. But for USA Basketball to receive the commitment of so many outstanding players remains an indicator of the great honor of representing your country means to these men.”

The new names under consideration are:

  1. Jarrett Allen (Cavaliers)
  2. Eric Gordon (Rockets)
  3. Jerami Grant (Pistons)
  4. Blake Griffin (Nets)
  5. Jrue Holiday (Bucks)
  6. DeAndre Jordan (Nets)
  7. Zach LaVine (Bulls)
  8. Julius Randle (Knicks)
  9. Duncan Robinson (Heat)
  10. Mitchell Robinson (Knicks)
  11. Fred VanVleet (Raptors)
  12. John Wall (Rockets)
  13. Zion Williamson (Pelicans)
  14. Christian Wood (Rockets)
  15. Trae Young (Hawks)

Forty-two players remain from the original list, which was announced in February 2020:

  1. Bam Adebayo (Heat)
  2. LaMarcus Aldridge (Spurs)
  3. Harrison Barnes (Kings)
  4. Bradley Beal (Wizards)
  5. Devin Booker (Suns)
  6. Malcolm Brogdon (Pacers)
  7. Jaylen Brown (Celtics)
  8. Jimmy Butler (Heat)
  9. Mike Conley (Jazz)
  10. Stephen Curry (Warriors)
  11. Anthony Davis (Lakers)
  12. DeMar DeRozan (Spurs)
  13. Andre Drummond (Cavaliers)
  14. Kevin Durant (Nets)
  15. Paul George (Clippers)
  16. Draymond Green (Warriors)
  17. James Harden (Nets)
  18. Montrezl Harrell (Lakers)
  19. Joe Harris (Nets)
  20. Tobias Harris (76ers)
  21. Gordon Hayward (Hornets)
  22. Dwight Howard (Sixers)
  23. Brandon Ingram (Pelicans)
  24. Kyrie Irving (Nets)
  25. LeBron James (Lakers)
  26. Kyle Kuzma (Lakers)
  27. Kawhi Leonard (Clippers)
  28. Damian Lillard (Blazers)
  29. Brook Lopez (Bucks)
  30. Kevin Love (Cavaliers)
  31. Kyle Lowry (Raptors)
  32. JaVale McGee (Cavaliers)
  33. Khris Middleton (Bucks)
  34. Donovan Mitchell (Jazz)
  35. Victor Oladipo (Rockets)
  36. Chris Paul (Suns)
  37. Mason Plumlee (Pistons)
  38. Jayson Tatum (Celtics)
  39. Myles Turner (Pacers)
  40. Kemba Walker (Celtics)
  41. Russell Westbrook (Wizards)
  42. Derrick White (Spurs)

Two players removed from that list are Warriors guard Klay Thompson, who is out for the season with a torn Achilles tendon, and Celtics guard Marcus Smart. Sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic that Smart turned down an invitation because of injury concerns due to having a short offseason and playing late into consecutive seasons (Twitter link).

Warriors Notes: Wiseman, Curry, Thompson, Roster

James Wiseman will be reevaluated once the Warriors return home from their road trip, Anthony Slater of The Athletic tweets. The No. 2 overall pick in the draft is recovering from a wrist injury suffered January 30 against Detroit. Coach Steve Kerr said the rookie center is progressing well from the left wrist sprain. The Warriors’ next home game is Thursday against Orlando.

We have more on the Warriors:

  • While the odds are starting to drop, Stephen Curry is a value play for bettors wagering on the Most Valuable Player award, according to Ethan Strauss of The Athletic. Curry currently has the sixth-best odds, but is posting offensive numbers on par with – or better than – any season in his career except for his brilliant 2015/16 campaign, Strauss adds. Curry is averaging 29.4 PPG and 6.1 APG after his 57-point explosion against Dallas over the weekend.
  • Klay Thompson has shed the walking boot as he continues to recover from a right Achilles tendon tear, Slater notes in another tweet“Getting the boot off is a milestone,” Kerr said. “I’m not sure what’s next.” Thompson suffered the injury in November.
  • If the Warriors want to bring in a free agent big man due to their frontcourt injuries, a wrinkle in the COVID-19 protocols could make that happen quickly, Marcus White of NBC Sports Bay Area relays. According to TrueHoop’s Tom Haberstroh, free agents who have tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 90 days (and are now negative) only require a two-day quarantine.

Warriors Notes: Oubre, Green, Wiseman, Thompson

The Warriors‘ faith in Kelly Oubre throughout his early-season struggles paid off in a big way Thursday night, writes Nick Friedell of ESPN. Oubre posted a career-high 40 points in a win at Dallas after shooting just 37.6% from the field coming into the game.

“Obviously for Kelly, it’s been a rough first quarter of the season,” coach Steve Kerr said. “And yet within that span, he’s had some excellent games for us. He’s played very well at times; he’s just had some really poor shooting nights during that span that people have locked in on, but Kelly’s getting more comfortable. Guys in the locker room love him and want to help him continue to get comfortable, and this was obviously a great night for him and for the whole group.”

Golden State traded for Oubre to provide another reliable wing scoring option with Klay Thompson lost for the season due to a torn Achilles. Oubre averaged a career-best 18.7 PPG last season with the Suns, but his shot hasn’t been falling consistently since the deal. He had made just 24 3-pointers all season before sinking seven last night.

“It’s honestly been a great learning experience for me,” Oubre said. “I take it back to me being a freshman in college again because it was more of a psychological change. I had the tools to take it to the next step, but mentally I had to slow myself and wrap everything (together) and find my flow.”

There’s more on the Warriors:

  • Thursday’s game also showed what Draymond Green is capable of doing in a small-ball lineup, Friedell adds in the same story. With centers James Wiseman, Kevon Looney and Marquese Chriss all sidelined by injuries, Green dished out 15 assists while playing a point-center role. “Draymond’s one of the best defenders in the game, and also one of the best playmakers,” said teammate Damion Lee. “He’s always looking to find guys, to get guys shots.”
  • Stephen Curry believes watching the offense last night should be an educational experience for Wiseman, who is expected to return in a week or so, writes Anthony Slater of The Athletic“It’ll be good, I’m sure, for Wise to see how that ball was moving (tonight and this week) and that he can play that way as well and still dominate the game the way he’s capable of with his size and presence at the rim,” Curry said.
  • Even though Thompson hasn’t played since the 2019 NBA Finals, he ranks 10th in the Western Conference backcourt in the first round of All-Star voting, notes Alex Shultz of SFGate.

Warriors Notes: Thompson, Green, Poole, Schedule

Warriors guard Klay Thompson provided an update on his recovery from a torn Achilles as he joined the broadcast team for Golden State’s game Saturday night, writes Nick Friedell of ESPN. Thompson admitted that it “kills” him to have to miss a second straight season because of an injury.

“I’m living good,” he said. “To be back in the building that I’m so eagerly awaiting to play in. Just a little bored at times. Stuff’s slow with trying to let my Achilles heal and get to the next stage, which is mobility work, but I’m feeling good. I’m happy to be with my teammates, obviously. Unfortunately, I’m not playing. It kills me every day, but I plan on playing for a long time, and I don’t want to have any mishaps come this rehab.”

The interview marked Thompson’s first public comments since he suffered the injury during a workout in November. He has stayed around the team since his surgery, appearing frequently at home games to cheer on his teammates.

There’s more on the Warriors:

  • Draymond Green believes he needs more time to get his game back to where it should be, according to Anthony Slater of The Athletic. Green, who missed the start of the season with a muscle strain in his foot, admits he’s not playing the way he is accustomed to. “I think I’m like two, three weeks away,” he said. “Continue to get in better shape. My speed is kind of getting there. I dunked the ball today. That was big time. I was really excited about that. That might’ve been my first dunk of the year. I’m not sure though. No. I got a dunk a couple games ago on two feet. That was my first one-foot dunk of the year.”
  • Jordan Poole turned in possibly the best game of his career the night before leaving for the G League bubble, Slater adds in the same story. Poole, who has been alternating playing time with Mychal Mulder as a reserve guard, scored 16 points in 21 minutes. He has appeared in 15 of the Warriors’ 20 games this season, but averages just 9.5 minutes, and the team decided to send him to the G League to get more playing time. “The G League isn’t looked at as having a negative impact,” Poole said. “I wasn’t getting minutes, I wasn’t playing, I wasn’t able to get on the floor and in the G League, I will be able to play 30-plus minutes.”
  • Golden State’s January 15 game at Phoenix, which was postponed because the Suns didn’t have enough available players, has been rescheduled for March 4, according to the Warriors’ website.

Pacific Notes: Caruso, J. Parker, Kawhi, Warriors, Fox

Lakers guard Alex Caruso hasn’t played since December 27, having been held out of action due to the NBA’s COVID-19 health and safety protocols, but it sounds like he’ll make his return on Thursday night vs. San Antonio. Caruso – who resumed workouts earlier this week, per Dave McMenamin of ESPN (Twitter link) – is no longer listed on the Lakers’ injury report.

Meanwhile, Kings forward Jabari Parker has yet to make his season debut, having been sidelined with back soreness and then having missed time for personal reasons. Parker is back with Sacramento now, but will have to go through the health and safety protocols before he receives clearance to play, head coach Luke Walton said on Wednesday (Twitter link via James Ham of NBC Sports California).

Here’s more from around the Pacific:

  • Kawhi Leonard was active on both Tuesday and Wednesday this week, marking the first time the Clippers star has played in both games of a back-to-back set since April 2017. As Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN writes, Leonard says he’s ready for that to become a trend. “I mean, I think I’ll be playing, pretty much,” he said after Wednesday’s game. “The last few years, I was injured, and I worked on getting my leg stronger, and it’s been a long time. But I was patient, and I’m able to play.”
  • In an Insider-only piece for ESPN.com, Kevin Arnovitz explores how the Warriors are dealing with a transition period, looking to remain competitive while they wait for Klay Thompson to get healthy and James Wiseman to continue to blossom. “Without Klay, we’re at intermission,” president of basketball operations Bob Myers said of the team’s current state.
  • Appearing on Matt Barnes’ and Stephen Jackson’s All That Smoke podcast, Kings guard De’Aaron Fox said he spoke to his father and the rest of his family after Aaron Fox tweeted, “Trade him,” in apparent reference to Marvin Bagley III. “I’m like, ‘Yo, y’all can’t do this s–t,'” Fox said, per James Ham of NBC Sports California. “‘Because regardless of anything y’all say, motherf—–s aren’t going to ask y’all, they’re gonna ask me about it.'”

Warriors Notes: Mannion, Curry, Thompson, Wiseman

Second-round pick Nico Mannion isn’t discouraged by the slow start to his NBA career, writes Alex Espinoza of NBC Sports Bay Area. After the Warriors took him with the 48th selection, Mannion signed a two-way contract that allows him to appear in 50 NBA games this season. He hasn’t played yet or even suited up to be on the active roster, but Mannion believes his time is coming.

“I can see myself out there on the floor,” he said. “I think I fit that style, just the quick decision-making.”

Mannion will have to earn playing time on a team that currently has five guards getting regular rotation minutes. He said he’s been making improvements in practice and is determined to be prepared when his opportunity arrives.

“They just told me to be ready,” Mannion said of the coaching staff. “If someone goes down, I’ll be there. Just trying to adjust and learn as much as I can right now. Trying to see it as a glass half full right now that I get some more time to prepare. That’s kind of how I’m looking at it.”

There’s more on the Warriors:

  • Stephen Curry is adjusting to defenses focused primarily on stopping him now that he’s not surrounded by All-Star teammates, observes Ethan Strauss of The Athletic. Teams are using variations of the box-and-one strategy that Toronto’s Nick Nurse employed during the 2019 NBA Finals. Part of the reason those defenses have been effective is that Kelly Oubre is shooting just 4.0% (1-for-25) from three-point range.
  • The Warriors are encouraging injured guard Klay Thompson to spend as much time as possible with the team, according to Connor Letourneau of The San Francisco Chronicle. Thompson is in the early part of rehab after having surgery last month for his torn right Achilles tendon. “It’s important for all of us, as well as Klay himself, that he’s around this season,” coach Steve Kerr said. “Because of last year’s absence and the pandemic, and just the whole bizarre year and a half it’s been for him and our franchise, I would love to have him up here as much as possible … I want our young players to feel his presence, and I want Klay here working with our training staff and getting on the court with our team as soon as he can. I think that will be important.”
  • James Wiseman is an easy choice as the league’s best rookie so far, writes Josh Schrock of NBC Sports Bay Area. The No. 2 pick is averaging 11.6 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.6 blocks in his first five NBA games.

Warriors Granted Disabled Player Exception

The Warriors have been granted a disabled player exception due to Klay Thompson‘s season-ending Achilles injury, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (via Twitter). The news comes in on the same day that Thompson underwent surgery to repair that torn Achilles.

The disabled player exception is a salary cap exception designed to allow teams to add a replacement for a player who suffers a major injury. It’s worth either half the injured player’s salary or the value of the non-taxpayer mid-level exception, whichever is lesser. Since Thompson is earning a $35MM+ salary, Golden State’s DPE will be worth $9,258,000, the amount of the MLE.

[RELATED: Hoops Rumors Glossary: Disabled Player Exception]

The disabled player exception doesn’t give a team an extra roster spot, but it allows the club to add a player without using cap space to do so. It can be used to sign a free agent, to claim a player off waivers, or to acquire a player in a trade. However, it can only be used on one player and can only accommodate a player on a one-year deal. A free agent signee can’t get a multiyear contract, and any trade or waiver target must be in the final year of his contract.

The Warriors already face a mammoth projected luxury tax bill and any additional salary they take on will only increase their end-of-season tax penalties, so the front office won’t use it just for the sake of it.

With no top free agents left on the open market, the Warriors will likely hang onto their DPE for now and see if it can be used closer to the trade deadline — or even after the deadline, on the buyout market. It will expire on April 19 if it’s still unused by then, according to Charania.

Klay Thompson Undergoes Surgery To Repair Achilles

Warriors sharpshooter Klay Thompson underwent surgery in Los Angeles today to repair his torn right Achilles, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, who says the five-time All-Star is expected to make a full recovery (Twitter links).

After missing the entire 2019/20 season while recovering from a torn left ACL, Thompson had been on track to return for opening night next month, but tore his Achilles last week during a workout in Southern California. As a result, he’ll be sidelined for his second consecutive full season and will go more than two years between NBA appearances.

The Warriors acquired Kelly Oubre in a trade with the Thunder and added Kent Bazemore in free agency in an effort to replenish their depth on the wing in the wake of Thompson’s devastating season-ending injury.

The team also applied for a disabled player exception in response to Thompson’s injury. Assuming it’s approved, which it should be, the exception would be worth approximately $9.3MM and would allow the team to acquire a player without using cap room.

A disabled player exception can be used to sign a free agent, to acquire a player in a trade, or to claim a player off waivers, but it can only be used on one player. Additionally, it can only be used to sign a player to a one-year deal — or to trade for or claim a player in the final year of his contract.