With Game 1 of the 2018 NBA Finals already in the books, the latest injury updates suggest there’s a good chance that Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson will be available for Game 2 on Sunday against the Cleveland Cavaliers, according to a report from the Mercury News.
Although Thompson suffered from what the Warriors described as a left lateral leg contusion when he was taken out midway through the first quarter of Thursday’s game, the 28-year-old shooting guard was cleared to reenter the game and start the second quarter. Despite his injury, Thompson was able to play a total of 45 minutes, scoring 24 points and sinking five out of his 10 three-point shot attempts as the Warriors beat the Cavs, 124-114, in overtime.
With postgame X-rays showing no damage or signs of a more serious injury, Thompson told the Mercury News that he felt sore after Game 1, but added that he’s confident he’ll be able to play in Game 2, as he tries to “[get back to] 100 percent.”
Talking about how Cleveland Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith appeared to have caused his injury by sliding into his leg, Klay Thompson said that he’s not blaming anyone for what happened in the first quarter of Game 1, as he believes it was all an accident on Smith’s part. However, the Mercury News wrote that fans at the Oracle Arena in Oakland were especially concerned when Thompson went down. Warriors head coach Steve Kerr was similarly worried, as he admitted to the Mercury News that the injury looked “pretty bad,” and that he wasn’t sure at first whether his star shooting guard would be able to return to the game.
As noted by the Mercury News, Thompson has been known for his durability across seven NBA seasons, missing only 13 games before he suffered a fractured right thumb in March. Considering that he only sees his Game 1 injury as a “muscle that got strained a little bit,” Thompson stressed that everything will boil down to pain tolerance in Game 2, as he hopes to “be even that much better” on Sunday.
Meanwhile, the Warriors might have to play without another key player on Sunday, according to CBS Sports‘ NBA Finals injury report. Sixth man Andre Iguodala missed Game 1 due to a left lateral leg contusion, and remains questionable as he prepares for reevaluation ahead of Game 2. Cavaliers power forward Kevin Love, who suffered a concussion in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Celtics, scored 21 points in 39 minutes on Thursday night after clearing concussion protocol, and is expected to play in Game 2.