Klay Thompson's career rejuvenated by long layoff, Tim Hardaway says

Drew Shiller
NBC Sports BayArea

Warriors star guard Klay Thompson tore his left ACL during Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals on June 13, and he underwent surgery July 2.

If the 2020-21 NBA season starts in December, the three-time NBA champion essentially will have an 18-month layoff.

"With Klay -- him being off for a year and a half, I think this rejuvenated his career," former Golden State point guard Tim Hardaway said Tuesday on 95.7 The Game's "Bonta, Steiny & Guru" show. "No question (it) rejuvenated his career. He can sit down and not come back until December, and everybody is gonna be fresh at that particular time.

"At his level, the only thing he has to do is maintain. Oh man -- that's ideal for a player now, especially at his age."

Warriors coach Steve Kerr watched Klay work out last week, and came away very impressed.

"He looked great. He was moving well and, as you would expect, just knocking down [shots]," Kerr said Friday on KNBR's "Tolbert, Kreuger & Brooks" show. "He's not playing 'live' yet, he hasn't done any contact stuff, but that's kind of the final step and there's obviously plenty of time for that.

"He's right on schedule, and everything's going well."

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Klay -- who turned 30 years old in February -- is a five-time All-Star and two-time All-NBA selection.

He averaged 24.5 points over his last 11 2019 playoff games while shooting 49 percent from 3-point range.

[RELATED: Warriors Ultimate Draft: How did Klay fall to eighth pick?]

Klay and his fellow Splash Brother, Steph Curry, are champing at the bit to get back on the court.

"Them two guys -- they are still in their prime," Hardaway said. "I still think that they can give a lot. I think they take care of their bodies very well. They give their bodies rest, which you need to do.

"This rest here is going to be great for them going into next season whenever they're gonna start again."

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Klay Thompson's career rejuvenated by long layoff, Tim Hardaway says originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

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