There were plenty of heart-stopping moments throughout Game 1 of the NBA Finals.
While most of the talk was surrounding JR Smith’s last-second blunder and Tristan Thompson’s ejection, there was one moment in the early going that had the Golden State Warriors a tad concerned. Smith was going for a steal and undercut Klay Thompson and Thompson appeared to be in a significant amount of pain. Thompson ended up going to the locker room, but ultimately returned a few minutes later despite the injury looking very brutal.
Thompson needed up hitting several key shots throughout Game 1 against the Cleveland Cavaliers On Friday, the sharpshooting guard made it clear that he is just sore and plans to suit up for Game 2 on Sunday.
From The Athletic’s Anthony Slater:
“I’ve got a sore ligament,” Thompson said. “I’m happy it’s just a muscle that got strained a little bit. No damage. The X-rays were negative so I’m happy about that.”
Thompson finished Game 1 with 24 points on 8-of-16 shooting. In addition, the former Washington State standout ended up knocking down five of his 10 attempts from beyond the arc, including a huge one in overtime that helped lead the Warriors to a 124-114 victory. Thompson was one of five Warriors to finish Game 1 in double figures with Stephen Curry leading the way with 29 points on the night.
The Warriors star guard has had a knack for being one of the most durable players in the franchise’s recent history. Slater also tweeted out during the game that Thompson had appeared in 537 out of 558 possible games since the Warriors selected him with the 11th overall pick back in the 2011 NBA Draft. In addition, Thompson has suited up for all 99 of the potential postseason games that Golden State has played in.
Thompson did miss eight of those games this March when he was dealing with a hand injury. He missed multiple weeks and was one of the big reasons that Golden State had their fair share of struggles down the stretch of the regular season.
The Warriors guard ended up moving around pretty well throughout the game and there obviously isn’t an structural damage to his left leg. He was diagnosed with a left lateral leg contusion shortly after going to the locker room, but his quick return eased the worries of most Golden State fans.
Golden State certainly benefitted from a few instances in which luck appeared to be in their favor. However, the team’s lethal offense really led the way and allowed the Warriors to pull away from the Cavaliers during the overtime period in Game 1. Thompson is one of the team’s most consistent shooters in recent years and the fact that that appears to be a minor injury is a huge victory for the organization.