Klay Thompson’s return cannot come quickly sufficient.
The final time we noticed Thompson on a basketball courtroom was Recreation 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals. He suffered a torn ACL in that sport, which sidelined him for your entire 2019-20 season. He then tore his Achilles previous to the 2020-21 season, sidelining him one other full season.
It is nonetheless unknown then Thompson will go well with up for the Warriors once more, however the latest reporting factors to him doubtlessly returning round Christmas.
We will solely hope that Thompson will come again as near full energy as doable as a result of previous to his accidents, he was one of the crucial explosive scorers and electrifying abilities within the league.
On the anniversary of one in every of Thompson’s most memorable performances, let’s take a stroll down reminiscence lane and relive the six instances he broke basketball.
3s on 3s on 3s on 3s
In 2003, Kobe Bryant set a brand new NBA file in making 12 3-pointers in a single sport. Two years later, Donyell Marshall tied that file.
Bryant and Marshall’s file stood for greater than a decade. Stephen Curry tied it on the finish of the 2015-16 season, solely to interrupt it with 13 3-pointers close to the beginning of the 2016-17 season.
Thompson then one-upped his Splash Brother on Oct. 29, 2018 with 14 3-pointers in a win over the Bulls.
Thompson completed the sport with 52 factors on 18-for-29 taking pictures from the sector and 14-for-24 taking pictures from 3, all in — anticipate it — 26 minutes of play. (Thompson took a seat on the bench with 4:53 remaining within the third quarter and by no means returned with the sport all however over). 10 of his 3s got here within the first half, tying a file held by Chandler Parsons for probably the most 3s ever made in a half.
Oh, and Thompson solely took nine dribbles.
MVP POWER RANKINGS: Steph leads the pack
Dribble solely when vital
On Jan. 8, 2019, Thompson scored a game-high 43 factors in a win over the Knicks, doing so on 18-for-29 taking pictures from the sector and 7-for-16 from 3-point vary.
The craziest a part of all of it? He took solely 4 dribbles.
For perspective, there have been a complete of 66 gamers who averaged no less than 4 dribbles whenever they touched the ball within the 2020-21 season.
For Thompson to attain 43 factors on much less dribbles than some gamers use in a single possession … unreal.
1 / 4 for the file books
Everybody who performed for the Kings within the 2014-15 season most likely believes within the sizzling hand concept, as a result of that they had front-row seats to Thompson turning right into a human flamethrower in the course of an NBA sport.
Not solely did Thompson gentle the Kings up with 52 factors, however he scored 37 factors within the third quarter alone, setting the NBA file for factors scored in a single quarter that was beforehand held by Kevin Love.
Thompson made much more historical past by taking pictures an ideal 13-for-13 from the sector and 9-for-9 from the perimeter within the interval, tying the NBA file for discipline objectives made in 1 / 4 and breaking the file for 3s made in 1 / 4.
“I used to be one of many luckiest NBA gamers ever to play with Michael Jordan, Tim Duncan, David Robinson and a number of the best gamers ever,” Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said after the game. “As many spectacular issues as Michael did, which he did nightly, I by no means noticed him do this.”
Klay Thompson actually scored 37 factors in a single quarter.
💧Report for PTS in 1 / 4
💧Report for 3s in 1 / 4
💧Report for FG in 1 / 4 (tied) pic.twitter.com/RFD4wtEvhj
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) May 12, 2020
You miss 100% of the pictures you do not take
Everybody who performed for the Lakers within the 2018-19 season most likely believes within the sizzling hand concept, too.
In a blowout win over the Lakers, Thompson scored 44 factors on 10-for-11 taking pictures from the perimeter. He began the sport taking pictures an ideal 10-for-10 from 3-point vary earlier than lacking his one and solely 3-point try of the evening with 3:55 remaining within the third quarter.
In making 10 straight 3s, Thompson tied the NBA file for consecutive made 3s to begin the sport.
Wish to guess who Thompson shares the file with? Nope, not Curry. Not Ray Allen both. Not Damian Lillard, James Harden or Duncan Robinson.
The reply is…
Ty Lawson, imagine it or not.
The primary to do it
How’s this for historical past: Thompson is the one participant to ever rating 60 factors whereas taking part in lower than 30 minutes, per Stathead.
In a win over the Pacers on Dec. 5, 2016, Thompson scored a career-best 60 factors on 21-for-33 taking pictures from the sector and 8-for-14 from 3-point vary whereas logging solely 29 minutes. With the Warriors main by 33 factors after three quarters of play, Thompson watched your entire fourth quarter on the bench.
Thompson’s dribble depend? 11. So greater than 5, however not by a lot.
S/O to my squad for setting me up 2night! I do not assume I needed to take extra then 5 dribbles the entire sport lol
— klay thompson (@KlayThompson) December 6, 2016
Moreover, Thompson had the ball in his possession for a grand whole of 90 seconds in his 29 minutes on the courtroom.
A comeback for the ages
You possibly can’t inform the story of Thompson’s profession with out Recreation 6 of the 2016 Western Convention Finals.
Coming off of a record-breaking common season that noticed the Warriors win 73 video games, Golden State discovered itself trailing Oklahoma Metropolis 3-1 within the 2016 Western Convention Finals. The Warriors defeated the Thunder in Recreation 5 in Golden State to maintain their season alive and traveled to Oklahoma Metropolis for Recreation 6.
Want you be reminded, that was a championship-level Thunder group that featured Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant and Serge Ibaka. The three of them had the Warriors on the ropes heading into the fourth quarter of Recreation 6 with an eight-point lead, however that is when Thompson took issues into his personal arms.
Following a 14-point third quarter, Thompson poured in 19 extra factors within the fourth quarter to steer a Warriors comeback and pressure a Recreation 7. Thompson was as soon as once more extremely environment friendly, taking pictures 6-for-9 from the sector and 5-for-6 from 3-point vary.
Just about each shot Thompson took in that fourth quarter was of a, uh, excessive diploma of problem.
Within the 2016 WCF, Klay Thompson hit 11 3-pointers in opposition to the Thunder to set a playoff file.
“Recreation 6 Klay” is the stuff of legend. Will we see it once more tonight? 💦 pic.twitter.com/qYuABpljy7
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 13, 2019
Thompson led the Warriors with 41 factors within the sport on 11-for-18 taking pictures from the perimeter, setting an NBA file for 3s made in a playoff sport.
The Warriors went on to defeat the Thunder in Recreation 7 to advance to the NBA Finals, changing into solely the 10th group in NBA historical past to beat a 3-1 deficit within the playoffs … solely to quickly turn into the primary group in NBA historical past to blow a 3-1 lead within the Finals.
Even so, that Recreation 6 in opposition to the Thunder was one of many best taking pictures exhibitions we have ever seen within the playoffs and should ever see.