Kerr: Klay feels ‘ready to play,’ return just weeks away originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
The Warriors are being cautious with Thompson but head coach Steve Kerr admitted the date is close.
“Now, it’s literally a matter of weeks,” Kerr told 95.7 The Game’s “Damon and Ratto” on Thursday. “So he’s in good spirits, he had a great weekend in Santa Cruz. It’s wonderful to see him happy and playing, but these last few weeks are going to be maybe the hardest time of all because he feels like he is ready to play right now. So he is still anxious to get out there.”
Thompson’s return is so close that Kerr and the Warriors are starting to factor him into their offensive calculus as the season hits the quarter pole.
“When teams are going to commit people to Steph the way that Phoenix did, there is going to be openings,” Kerr said Tuesday after the Warriors’ loss to the Phoenix Suns in which Steph Curry was held to just 12 points. “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.”
The Warriors have roared out to an 18-3 start without Thompson and it’s clear that the star’s impending return has given them a boost early in the season.
“I mean from a mental standpoint alone, it’s huge,” Green said after the Warriors’ win over the Nets. “I think it also helps with the way other teams view you as well. We’re looking forward to getting him back. We know what he brings to the table. We’re not expecting him to be Klay Thompson of 2018 right away, but he has worked his ass off. He has worked his ass off for this moment and I’m looking forward to getting him back out there.”