Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson was spotted shooting on the court before Thursday’s game against the Denver Nuggets fueling speculation about a possible return.
Though it is a small step in the rehabilitation process, voices around the league have been theorizing a return this season could be possible.
At about the midway point of the regular season, things have not panned out for the Warriors, to say the least. Standing as one of two teams without double-digit wins, this year has been unfamiliar after their near-five-year run of dominance.
Injuries have played a significant component in this, as Klay Thompson has not checked into a game since June in Game 6 of the NBA Finals, and Stephen Curry has missed most of this season with a broken hand.
While Curry’s injury has him likely returning soon, Thompson’s recent progression and comments raise suspicion that he could find himself back on the floor this season as well.
Before the Warriors’ 104-101 loss to the Nuggets on January 16th, Thompson was seen in a shootaround decked out in full uniform for a little less than half an hour.
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This may seem somewhat routine from a player going through a rehabilitation process, but it was Thompson’s comments pregame that had people chatting.
Thompson sent some mixed signals with his words, saying that “It’s going great” regarding his rehab, adding, “I don’t know what’s going to come this season. I would love to get out there.”
These comments seem very positive, but Klay also added that he would not rush himself back from injury “because I want to play at a high level until I’m in my late 30s.”
While his comments seem all over the place, the guard has said all of the right things. With Thompson and Curry both set to be reevaluated next month, things could get interesting.
However, with the Warriors placing dead last in the Western Conference at 9-34, a return so late in the season for either might not make much sense.
Everyone would love to see the star-studded trio consisting of Thompson, Curry, and D’Angelo Russell all on the court together, but only in the right circumstance. If this means waiting until next season to ensure everyone is their healthiest, so be it.
An ACL tear is not an easy injury to recover from, but seeing Thompson making progressive strides like this is reassuring.
With an unfamiliar lottery-bound season likely ahead, Thompson’s chances of returning this season remain slim, but not nonexistent.