Does Warriors star Klay Thompson have one of worst contracts in NBA?

Drew Shiller
NBC Sports BayArea

Klay Thompson tore his ACL during Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals vs. the Toronto Raptors.

As ESPN's Ramona Shelburne reported that night, Thompson -- after receiving an MRI on his left knee -- asked: "Do you think this could affect my free agency?"

Answer: It did not have an impact.

A couple of weeks later, the five-time All-Star signed a five-year maximum extension with the Warriors worth just under $190 million.

Klay earned about $32.7 million in 2019-20 despite missing the entire season. Here is the contract breakdown for the next four years:
2020-21: $35,361,360
2021-22: $37,980,720
2022-23: $40,600,080
2023-24: $43,219,440

"Our colleague John Hollinger asked me recently if Thompson belongs in the discussion for worst contract in the league," Seth Partnow of The Athletic wrote Monday. "If we're talking about players losing a step, a 30-year-old coming off an ACL reconstruction has to be a candidate."

"It is true that there has been significantly more concern about how former Warrior (Kevin) Durant will recover from his serious injury, though some of that stems from the difference between a ruptured Achilles and a torn ACL," Danny Leroux wrote back. "Still, Thompson not making it all the way back would create major problems for the team's chances of contention and put even more on his teammates, including deadline acquisition (Andrew) Wiggins."

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For obvious reasons, it is far too early to judge Klay's contract.

The three-time NBA champion will turn 31 years old in February, and we can't automatically assume he will return to his prior form. After all, Thompson said on multiple occassions over the last year that he felt like he was playing the best basketball of his career when he sustained the injury last June 13.

But even if he only becomes 80 to 90 percent of the player he once was, still there would be a good number of "worse" contracts.

[RELATED: Why hypothetical Klay-for-Giannis trade is clear to Legler]

Ultimately, there are plenty of reasons for optimism surrounding Thompson's future, and he is "eager to prove everyone wrong again."

If the two-time All-NBA selection comes back and it looks like he hasn't missed a beat, his contract won't be an issue whatsoever. And more importantly, it will mean the Warriors probably are legit contenders again.

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Does Warriors star Klay Thompson have one of worst contracts in NBA? originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

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