The Golden State Warriors have lost their grip on the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference, which they’ve become accustomed to owning over the past few seasons. But the players and coaches have continued to state that priority of earning the top seed falls a distant second to having everyone healthy heading into the playoffs.
An extended absence would be the first of his career as Thompson has been one of the most durable Warriors. He played all but one of the first 66 games this season. He hasn’t missed more than five games since he became the full-time starter in 2012-13.
Golden State came out blazing after the All-Star break, winning seven straight games, and it appeared that the champions had started to kick things into high gear with the playoffs just over a month away. But the injuries to Curry, Green and now Thompson have coincided with the Warriors losing their last two games.
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Thompson suffered the injury, originally diagnosed as a sprain, in Sunday’s 109-103 loss at Minnesota. he will be re-evaluated next Tuesday, March 20.
The long-range sharpshooter averages 19.7 points, 3.8 rebounds and 2.7 assists a game, shooting 48.9 percent from the court and 44.2 percent from 3-point range.
The news comes a day after the Warriors learned they will be without two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Stephen Curry for at least another week with a sore right ankle that has kept him out since last Thursday, March 8. Curry will be re-evaluated before Monday’s game at San Antonio.
At 51-16, the Warriors are two games behind Houston (53-14) in the fight for the best record in the NBA and the Western Conference and one game ahead of overall third-place Toronto (50-17), the Eastern Conference leader.
Thompson said he hopes to be back sooner rather than later.
“Hopefully only a week; hopefully I’ll be back by next Friday,” Thompson said during the Warriors’ 117-106 victory over the Lakers. “Just sitting up here watching, I miss being down there, man, so I don’t want to be out any longer than that.”
Warriors coach Steve Kerr chose to look on the bright side in regard to his shooting guard’s injury.
“He probably looked more spent recently,” Kerr said. “So, I look at this as a positive.”