Since tearing his ACL in the 2019 NBA Finals, Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson has remained on the path towards a full recovery. However, there remains the potential that he could miss the entire 2019-20 campaign due to the injury. That hasn’t hindered Thompson‘s progress as that headway has caught head coach Steve Kerr’s attention enough to address the situation with much optimism about what lies ahead of the All-Star guard.
Klay Thompson’s ACL injury
Throughout much of his career, Thompson has proven to be one of the most durable players in the league. That saw him play in at least 73 regular-season games in each of his first seven years in the league, including an entire 82-game slate and more than 80 three times.
All of that came tumbling down in Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals as he suffered a torn ACL after landing awkwardly after an attempted dunk in transition. In the time since then, Thompson has continued to attack the rehab process, taking steps forward towards returning to the court.
The Warriors haven’t placed a timetable for his return, but it’s clear that he’s well on his way to getting back into the fold. There was a bit more clarity brought forward on that front with Kerr’s recent comments.
Steve Kerr, Warriors encouraged by Klay Thompson’s recovery
Golden State has continued to let Thompson operate in the background with his recovery, but that hasn’t kept his progress being noticed.
According to Anthony Slater of The Athletic, Kerr has voiced that the All-Star guard has moved towards shooting to a higher degree while experiencing an uptick in his rehab workload.
“I’m watching Klay out on the floor, shooting a lot of shots. He’s got that beautiful stroke. He’s just out there smiling and laughing and shooting jumpers. More than anything it just feels good to see him out there. For him to feel that he’s actually closer. Even though he’s still ways from being out on the floor.
“He’s pretty far down the path. He’s starting to to feel that. The routine is changing. He’s out on the floor more.”
It’s clear that the Warriors are taking the precautionary approach to the situation, but Thompson has remained on a steady path with his recovery from the injury. It’s one that typically takes around 9-to-12 months full heal, and he’s at around the six-month mark making some considerable progress.
There should be a more definitive timetable after the All-Star break, but the fact that he’s stayed on this path without a hitch is a promising sign.
Will Klay Thompson return this season?
The Warriors know the type of injury that Thompson is dealing with typically takes around a year to fully heal.
That alone could put him out for the entire year, which the team has shifted their focus towards beyond the 2019-20 campaign. It has been nothing short of a disappointing season that has been marred by injuries from their star talent that has also seen two-time league MVP Stephen Curry sidelined for the last few months due to a broken hand.
Golden State has no rush towards bringing Thomspon back into the fold this season as the team will likely be without out of the playoff picture by that point. It also alleviates any pressure from him to get back on the court sooner than he’s ready to do so.
Thompson has voiced his desire to play this season but understands the long-term approach to the matter will be vital in helping the Warriors get back on track as one a title-contending team in the stacked Western Conference.