No one had more fun at the Golden State Warriors’ raucous championship parade than Klay Thompson. After going viral multiple times for his semi-drunken public antics on the streets and waters of San Francisco, the future Hall-of-Famer finally addressed his biggest gaffe—in typically hilarious fashion, of course.
During his appearance on the latest episode of Point Forward, a podcast hosted by longtime Dubs teammate Andre Iguodala and the recently retired Evan Turner, Thompson opened up about falling smack dab into a Warriors fan after tripping on a street track while celebrating his team’s fourth title in eight seasons.
“I tried to do a little hop, skip and a jump, and my vert ain’t as high as it used to be a few years ago, so I went stumbling, man,” he joked. “But I was just grateful she was there. She really threw me the best assist I’ve had in weeks. I was going down.”
Quite the assist, indeed. Like Thompson said, he could’ve fallen face first into the pavement if not for the perfectly timed aid from now-famous woman in white.
Klay Thompson accidentally knocked down a fan as he was running towards the crowd 😂pic.twitter.com/MDHn4AZZFf
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) June 20, 2022
Thompson wasn’t lying. He’s not quite as athletic as he was before tearing his ACL in the 2019 Finals and rupturing his Achilles tendon a year-and-a-half later, causing him to miss the entirely of the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons. Some decline in explosiveness was also to be expected even irrespective of those injuries. Thompson, after all, turned 32 in February and has been in the league for over a decade.
But the last half of the NBA Finals marked a palpable shift in Thompson’s effectiveness as a one-on-one defender. He routinely stymied both Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown when attacked in isolation, flashing the standout defensive form that once made him among basketball’s top individual stoppers.
Thompson won’t ever be the athlete he was in his prime. The further he gets away from surgery and more accustomed he grows to the rigors of NBA basketball, though, the more likely it his body starts responding closer to the way it did before he went down. Were the last three games of the Finals early evidence of that development coming to fruition ahead of next season? Fingers crossed.
Either way, let’s just be glad the unsuspecting fan was in the exact right place at the exact right time to break Thompson’s fall.