Coach Steve Kerr Talks About Klay Thompson's Role Alongside Stephen Curry As All-Star's Return Nears

Wikimedia Commons

JB Baruelo

Golden State Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson experienced one of the worst nightmares of his NBA career when he suffered a torn ACL in 2019. The injury didn't only cost them an NBA championship title, but it also forced him to miss the 2019-20 NBA season. Thompson was supposed to rejoin the Warriors in the 2020-21 NBA season but during the 2020 NBA offseason, he suffered an Achilles injury that further delayed his return to the court.

As of now, Thompson is already showing a massive improvement in his rehabilitation and expected to officially join the Warriors soon.

Warriors Recall Klay Thomson From G-League

Wikimedia Commons

After seeing that he's 100 percent healthy, the Warriors decided to temporarily send Thompson to their G-League affiliate, the Santa Cruz Warriors, to evaluate his performance post-injury. After a few days, the Warriors public relations department announced on their official Twitter account that Thompson, together with Damion Lee and James Wiseman, would be recalled from Santa Cruz.

The decision came before the Warriors suffered a massive defeat at the hands of the Devin Booker-led Phoenix Suns on Tuesday night at Talking Stick Resort Arena.

Warriors Need Klay Thompson

Wikimedia Commons

It still remains unknown when Thompson will play his first game in the 2021-22 NBA season. However, after their major weakness on the offensive end of the floor was exposed by the Suns, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr already knew what Thompson's role will be when he sets foot on the court this season.

"When teams are going to commit people to Steph the way that Phoenix did, there is going to be openings," Kerr said, as quoted by NBC Sports. "There is going to be openings for Jordan [Poole], openings for Otto [Porter Jr.], guys who have knocked down a bunch of threes, and there will be openings for Klay Thompson. It's going to be fun."

Splash Brothers Returns

It would still take time for Thompson to return to his old self but once he regains his rhythm, Warriors' fans would have the opportunity to watch the Splash Brothers of Curry and Thompson again. Having both star guards on the floor would make it harder for opposing teams to stop the Warriors' offense.

Before he suffered an injury, Thompson was among the Warriors' top scorers and one of the deadliest three-point shooters in the league. In the last season he played, he averaged 21. 5 points while shooting 46.7 percent from the field and 40.2 percent from beyond the arc, per ESPN.

Jordan Poole Expected To Return To The Bench

Thompson's nearing return is expected to put an end to Jordan Poole's stint in the Warriors' starting lineup. Though he knew that being a starter was only temporary, Poole has done a great job serving as Curry's backcourt partner while Thompson was sidelined by an injury. In 21 games he played this season, the 22-year-old shooting guard is averaging 18.5 points, 3.1 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and 1.1 steals while shooting 45.6 percent from the field and 34.7 percent from beyond the arc, per ESPN.

Upon Thompson's return, Poole is expected to lead the Warriors' second unit in terms of scoring. He could also serve as insurance in case Thompson needs more rest or suffers another injury.