Warriors guard Klay Thompson wasn’t around postgame to sit in front of his own locker, so his Splash Brother, superstar guard Steph Curry, kept Klay’s seat warm while talking to reporters on Friday, after Golden State played its final preseason game in 2019-20.
He surely can’t wait for Thompson to sit in his own chair.
Thompson will miss the majority of the regular season after tearing his ACL in the NBA Finals last season, in just one of the many changes the Warriors will deal with this year.
They’re no longer considered a shoo-in for the Finals or even the playoffs. Forward Kevin Durant left in free agency, former team leader, Andre Iguodala was traded away. Swingman Shawn Livingston, a member of all three recent championship teams, retired.
But the loss of Thompson, while temporary, could be the largest blow to the team, certainly in the short term. Here’s what Curry said about Thompson while he sat in his teammate’s chair, according to The Athletic’s Anthony Slater.
“It’s different, man. He’s such a unique player and such a huge part of our DNA and who we are as a team.
“When we’re out there on the court, you gotta have guys step up in his absence until he comes back, hopefully, later in the season … Seven years we’ve been playing together, and you get used to a certain look. We’ve got to adjust as NBA players and keep it moving until he gets back.”
Reporters asked Curry if he’ll miss Thompson most on offense or defense. After a pause, Curry said, “both.”
It would be easy to expect Curry to say, or at least think defense. Thompson famously takes the defensive pressure off Curry, guarding the opponent’s best guard. But Curry knows that Thompson is, incredibly, one of the best shooters in NBA history. Curry would know. He’s arguably the best shooter of all time.
And that’s why he’ll be missed. In the meantime, Curry will keep his seat warm for his Splash Bro and do all he can to keep the team on track to make the playoffs.