The Warriors are taking a cautious approach with Klay Thompson, who shall be playing his first full NBA season since coming back from ACL and Achilles tendon injuries in January.
Because of this, coach Steve Kerr desires to ease the 32-year-old into his minutes fairly than throwing the Warriors star right into the hearth ahead of opening night against the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday at Chase Center.
Thompson will see some motion in Golden State’s final preseason game against the Denver Nuggets on Friday at Chase Center in a single last tune-up before the 2022-23 NBA season gets underway.
“I believe he’ll probably, I’m guessing; I have never talked to Rick [Celebrini] yet, but 15-18 minutes tomorrow, probably not way more than that,” Kerr told reporters Thursday.
“So due to his delayed begin to camp by way of contact, he will take somewhat while longer than the opposite guys to stand up to the same old minutes.”
While the Warriors work out a method to handle Thompson’s minutes, Kerr added that his optimal scenario for the team this season can be to have a secondary unit that takes playing time from the veterans, allowing them to rest.
“I mean, that is form of the dream that is what you really need is to have a potent second unit that cannot only just hold the road, but can do some real damage and create separation,” Kerr added. “When that happens, and also you’re in a position to extend that run somewhat bit longer, it also might mean that by the fourth quarter, you’ve a snug lead, and also you haven’t got to ask for those extra 4 or five minutes from the starter.
“So a robust second unit is essential on multiple fronts, and one in every of those, of course, is giving our vets some rest.”
Coming off his two significant injuries last season, Thompson appeared in 32 games and averaged 20.4 points, 3.9 rebounds, and a pair of.8 assists.
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Nonetheless, the Warriors need to make sure that Thompson can navigate the 82-game schedule and be prepared when Golden State ramps up for an additional deep playoff run within the spring.