Over the last two years, Golden State Warriors star guard Klay Thompson has dealt with a tough hurdle concerning injuries. Thompson hasn’t played an NBA game since Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals. With that in mind, the five-time All-Star just gave Warriors fans another reason for excitement regarding next season.
Klay Thompson struggles to move past injuries
Through Thompson’s first seven seasons, he earned a strong reputation as one of the league’s most durable players.
The 31-year-old played in at least 73 regular-season games in each campaign, including an entire 82-game slate and more than 80 contests three times. However, all that came crashing down after he suffered a torn ACL in Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals.
Thompson missed the 2019-20 campaign, with sights set on returning the following year. Those aspirations quickly came crashing down after he tore his Achilles tendon, forcing him to miss a second straight entire season.
It’s been a long road to recovery, but it appears the star guard is finally making headway.
Klay Thompson used 1 Instagram post to excite Warriors fans about next season
Despite not playing in the 2020-21 season, Thompson continues to progress in his recovery from a torn Achilles.
The Warriors maintain a cautious approach, but it hasn’t stopped the star guard from taking significant steps forward. This week, the 31-year-old took to Instagram to voice that he went through on-court drills, which he called a “big milestone” in his rehab.
“DubNation, I still have a really long , long , LOOOONG way to go,” Thompson said. “But my goodness, it felt so dang good to get up and down and see the ball go thru the net. Can’t wait to burn em down next year 👌🏽 💦 🔥 !! Big milestone for me this!”
Although Thompson is still far away from returning to the court, it’s another massive progression in his recovery work. He is getting his body reacclimated to the physical nature of running, jumping, and landing on his surgically-repaired leg.
Thompson isn’t only making his way back from a torn Achilles, but also a torn ACL he suffered more than two years ago. It only makes the Warriors more cautious concerning the pace and workload as he hopes to return after missing the last two full seasons.
More than anything else, Thompson is moving closer to his much-anticipated comeback.
Warriors are eyeing a December return
As Thompson moves along in his recovery, the Warriors continue to monitor the situation.
The star guard hasn’t put an exact timetable on his return, but the expectation is that he will play in the 2021-22 season. During a recent media session, Warriors general manager Bob Myers voiced he anticipates Thompson likely playing by December.
“I think we’ll have a better sense when training camp comes around,” Myers said via NBC Sports. “and there’s a difference between if he’s playing 5-on-5, which we think he will be by then, and then playing in an NBA game. And that’s when we’re going to have to figure out when the right time for that is. I think we’ve said on record, I don’t think it’ll be the first game of the season in October. Will it be Thanksgiving? Will it be Christmas? I think it’s more likely December, but I don’t know when.
“It’s hard to gauge. It depends on how he meets all these hurdles of his rehab. But I do know this: the guy is in there every day, he’s working his rear end off and he’s thirsty. He’s thirsty to get back on the court. He loves basketball. No doubt how much he can help us.”
The star guard must first clear several hurdles in a practice setting before any serious thought concerning a set return date. Thompson will have to work his way up to playing 5-on-5 with contact without limitations. Once he reaches that point, then Golden State can move forward.
Until then, the Warriors will take the precautionary approach and not rush him back until he’s physically ready.