It has been a season full of low points for Golden State Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson. But it's safe to say that Thompson, the proud four-time NBA champion, has now hit rock bottom after his horrific performance during the Warriors' season-ending 118-94 defeat to the Sacramento Kings in the 9 vs. 10 matchup in the Western Conference play-in tournament.

Thompson has been playing much better as of late. But when the Warriors needed him the most, he vanished. Thompson, in 32 minutes of play, put up a goose egg on the scoring column, scoring a grand total of zero points on 0-10 shooting (0-5 from beyond the arc) as he endured the worst game of his professional career.

Social media is a ruthless place, with fans on Twitter (X) piling on Klay Thompson and the Warriors' misery with posts calling the 34-year old sharpshooter washed, making fun of him at the lowest point of his career.

“Today my dad asked me to clean his car for him so I spent the whole morning doing it. After some time, I went back inside and he asked me how the car was looking. ‘Klay Thompson' I replied. He just smiled. He knew that it was washed,” one fan resorted to posting a famous copypasta.

In fact, this is the first time in Klay Thompson's career where he played at least 12 minutes and put up zero points. Thompson, 34, is not getting any younger, and professional basketball players usually don't get better the deeper they go into their 30s. In what might be the saddest realization of it all, this dreadful performance against the Kings may truly mark the end of Thompson's time as a featured player.

Klay Thompson: It truly might be over and there's no going back

Since his breakout in the early 2010s, Klay Thompson has always been one of the most feared snipers in the association, a player who induces panic beyond the arc. He may not be the most esteemed playoff performer, as he's had his fair share of postseason struggles even during his heyday. But he certainly was a stone-cold killer who showed up when the Warriors' backs were against the wall.

Game 6 Klay became a legend; his clutch three-pointers in 2016 against the Oklahoma City Thunder immortalized him in the museum of playoff heroes, and he also put up epic Game 6 performances in 2018 and 2019. Even in 2022, fresh off a two-and-a-half year absence, Thompson played a huge role in the Warriors' fourth championship victory.

But the 2023-24 season has been a humbling one for Klay Thompson — serving as a continuation of his downward trend that began last year. He struggled mightily during the Warriors' six-game second-round exit against the Los Angeles Lakers; in the last three games of that series, Thompson went 9-42 from the field, shooting 21 percent in a make-or-break stretch. In 2023, Thompson was benched on multiple occasions, even coming off the pine for an extended period in the middle of the season.

Thompson simply cannot get separation from defenders anymore, be it via his off-ball movement or off the dribble, and the injuries he endured from the middle of 2019 until early 2022 appears to have sapped nearly all of his athleticism, making it difficult for him to play in the way he had grown accustomed to — leading to questionable shot selection and an inability to shake off cold spells.

The 34-year old shooting guard's 0-10 performance against the Kings is indicative that he may have to take a smaller role moving forward, and it's unclear what the future holds for him as he enters free agency coming off the worst game of his career.

Will the Warriors bring back the fading Splash Brother?

Klay Thompson may not be the player he once was, but he still is one of the most important players in franchise history. There's no sense in holding onto nostalgia in a professional sports setting, but the silver lining of Thompson's steep decline is that the Warriors may not be able to keep him in town for a cut-rate deal.

Thompson will make nowhere near the $43.2 million he made this past season; the Warriors might be able to use the contract extension Grayson Allen signed with the Phoenix Suns as a point of comparison for what they would offer the 34-year old shooting guard.

Allen signed a four-year, $70 million deal with the Suns, a fair amount all things considered due to how elite he is from beyond the arc and how clean of a fit he is alongside the team's three stars. Given that Klay Thompson has been showing showing signs of steep age-related decline, teams will be wary to offer him that kind of long-term commitment, making a return to Golden State the most likely option.

Perhaps the Warriors could bring Thompson back on a shorter-term contract (maybe two years) for an average value of around $16 to $20 million per season.