Klay Thompson gave everybody in Warrior land a scare when he landed hard on his back, then hit his head and eventually left the court in seemingly considerable pain. The sigh of relief came after the game when coach Mark Jackson said Thompson was set to return for the second quarter until he “got my Pop on” and rested him.
Thompson was still in the locker room when the media arrived and he wasn’t with the trainers. He didn’t speak at length, but echoed what Jackson said in that he was fine. So it seems as if there should be no major concerns about Thompson’s health.
The guy has been durable, never missing a game in his NBA career. It looks like that streak will remain in tack if what Jackson and Thompson are saying is right and nothing tightens up over night.
Other than that, this was a pretty run of the mill victory — exactly the type the Warriors need to chalk up against teams like the Hawks. With players talking about wanted to go undefeated at home the rest of the way, you can’t have slip ups. Even more so, you need to dominate the teams that you are capable of dominating.
This next stretch of games against Phoenix, Dallas and the Clippers — all Western Conference playoff teams as of now — won’t be easy and will be even tougher if the starters are extended to 40-plus minutes every night. A bench performance like Friday, with 51 points and 22 reounds, is exactly what they need.
And that’s why it’s big that Thompson appears to be OK. If he’s out, and all of a sudden Harrison Barnes or Jordan Crawford enters the starting lineup, it weakens the bench. That’s a trickle down effect the Warriors can’t afford because it’s no surprise that the bolstering of the bench from guys like Jermaine O’Neal, Steve Blake and Crawford to compliment Barnes and Draymond Green has been a big reason for the Warriors surge.
Now if they can even manage to take two of the next three, I think they’d be pretty happy with that.