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Klay Thompson Says It’s “Very Hard,” Adjusting to New Role – Basketball Insiders

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It is no secret that Klay Thompson has looked like a shell of his former self this year. Injuries and age appear to be catching up with the second splash brother. Now, the Warriors have made lineup adjustments. One of those includes closing games without their starting shooting guard in the rotation. When asked about this, Thompson was brutally honest.

“Yeah,” Thompson said, when asked if his changing role has been an adjustment. “You kidding me? Go from, you know, one of the best players it’s hard for anybody.

“I’ll be honest with you. It’s very hard.”

Head coach, Steve Kerr, also weighed in on the situation.

He’s fine,” Kerr said about Thompson. “This is a season where he’s had a lot of ups and downs. It’s not easy for a guy who’s been so good and a Hall of Fame player to deal with the injuries and it’s never easy for any player, getting older. [But] he’s mentally tough.”

Klay Thompson has also been linked in several trade rumors throughout the year. February 8th will tell us a lot about the future of the Warriors organization.

Warriors Not Closing Games With Klay Thompson in Lineup Anymore

Klay Thompson’s Rough Season

Thompson appears to be out of his prime. He is still a solid player, but he has not been playing up to his standards this season. So far this year, Thompson is averaging 17.1 points, 3.0 total rebounds, and 2.3 assists per game. He is currently averaging a three-point shooting percentage of 37.1 percent and has a defensive rating of 120, which is a career-worst in this category.

For context, Thompson career totals are 19.6 points, 2.3 assists, and 3.5 total rebounds per game to go along with a three-point shooting percentage of 41.3 percent. On top of this, his career defensive rating is 110 to couple with a career defensive box plus/minus of -1.2. The five-time All-Star is clearly having a rough year, but if we have learned anything about stars of his caliber, it is to never count them out until the very end. Whether Thompson spends the remainder of this season with Golden State remains to be seen with the NBA Trade Deadline drawing closer.

Is This the End for the Golden State Warriors?

The Warriors have been mired in a ton of trade rumors this season. Klay Thompson is not the only Warrior involved in trade speculation. Draymond Green, Chris Paul, and Andrew Wiggins have also been mentioned in rumors. If the team does decide to move one or more of their core players, it would be safe to say that Golden State’s dynasty is officially over.

Even with superstar, Stephen Curry, still on the roster. Klay Thompson seems to be the least likely among those mentioned in trade discussions to be dealt before the trade deadline. However, stranger things have happened in this league. If the correct offer comes around, seeing Klay Thompson in a different jersey could eventually become a reality. For his sake, hopefully he can begin to regain some of his confidence as a player.



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Jalen Brunson Tried to Sign Extension With Dallas Mavericks

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It is no secret by now that the Dallas Mavericks should have kept Jalen Brunson. However, there seems to be more to the story than many originally knew. Brunson himself said that he tried to sign a contract extension a couple different occasions.

“It’s funny, because my agent was like, “You can get more, you can more.” “I’m saying “Well, I just want to be safe. I’m not trying to gamble right now. This is not something you really gamble with if it’s out there.

“But they were like, “We went to see where we’re at by like 20, 25 games into the season.” “But were like, well, if we’re not going to do it, I kind of don’t want to do it until after the season. I’m not trying to think about this during the season.

“So there’s a period where Luka [Doncic] went out and I started to start. I was playing really well. I think I was averaging like 20 and 6 maybe. It was about that 20 to 25 mark. And so we went back, like “If the deal is there, we’re thinking about it, like, I’ll do it like right now.” “Still, it was no. It wasn’t a hard no. It was just like “We want to see, we want to see.” “The trade deadline comes, I’m like thinking if I’m not getting extended, I’m probably going to get traded…

“The deal came on the table after the trade deadline. I was like “No, I think I’ve outgrown that now. Personally, that what I thought. “I think I’ve outgrown that.”

Brunson is now thriving with the New York Knicks as the first option and made his first All-Star Team this season.

Jalen Brunson Wanted to Stay With Dallas Mavericks

The All-Star is Thriving in New York

One could argue that Jalen Brunson was never gonna reach his true ceiling playing with Luka Doncic. Now, his full abilities have been unlocked. On the year, he is averaging 27.6 points, 6.5 assists per game, and a field goal percentage of 48.3 percent. Brunson has also become a sharpshooter from beyond the arc as he is striking it at a rate of 41.1 percent from deep this season.

He has become one of the best on-ball creators in the league ever since arriving in New York and he and All-Star, Julius Randle, have developed into a solid star duo. Brunson has taken on more of a leadership role as well and it has paid dividends as the Knicks are in the top-four of the Eastern Conference as of February 22nd, 2024. All in all, the New York Knicks hit a home run by signing Jalen Brunson.



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NBA Suspends Isaiah Stewart For Punching Drew Eubanks

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On Thursday, the NBA issued Detroit Pistons center Isaiah Stewart a three-game suspension for punching Phoenix Suns center Drew Eubanks at Footprint Center in Phoenix hours before the teams played on Feb. 14.

Following the incident, Stewart was arrested by Phoenix police, issued a citation, and was then released. The misdemeanor assault charge against Stewart has been dismissed by the Phoenix Municipal Court.

The motion to dismiss was filed by the prosecutor’s office and granted. Eubanks said that the altercation occurred as he entered the arena before the game last week.

The following statement was issued by the NBA:

“The NBA announced today that Detroit Pistons forward-center Isaiah Stewart has been suspended three games without pay for initiating a physical altercation with Phoenix Suns forward-center Drew Eubanks on Feb. 14 before a game between the Pistons and Suns at Footprint Center in Phoenix.

“Stewart punched and pushed Eubanks during the altercation. Stewart will begin serving his suspension with the next NBA regular-season game that he is eligible and physically able to play, which is expected to be tonight’s game between the Pistons and Indiana Pacers at Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.”

Eubanks said the two started arguing before chest bumping one another, and Stewart threw the punch. Security intervened and Eubanks still played the game, scoring six points with eight rebounds in 18 minutes.

NBA issues Detroit Pistons’ Isaiah Stewart a three-game suspension without pay after reviewing video

The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported on Wednesday that the league had viewed the hallway video of the incident and inside sources informed him that Eubanks “was punched in the face and Isaiah Stewart dropped his bags to deliver a punch.”

“It showed that Drew Eubanks really didn’t flinch,” Charania added. “He took it and really stood there stone cold. They’re obviously separated by security. Eventually, Isaiah Stewart left the arena with Pistons security as well.”

The Suns released a statement following the game calling the incident “unprovoked” and saying that “acts of violence such as this are unacceptable.”

This is Stewart’s second NBA suspension.

In the 2021-22 season, the league issued Stewart a two-game suspension without pay for “escalating an on-court altercation” by repeatedly and aggressively pursuing LeBron James in an unsportsmanlike manner, during Detroit’s 121-116 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Nov. 21.

James was suspended one game without pay for striking Stewart in the face and initiating an on-court altercation. Stewart was assessed two technical fouls, James was assessed a Flagrant Foul Penalty 2, and both players were ejected. The incident began with a loose ball foul on Stewart with 9:18 remaining in the third quarter.

Coming out of the 2024 All-Star break, the Pistons begin the second half of the regular season Thursday night in Indiana. Stewart has missed eight consecutive games because of a left ankle sprain.





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LeBron James sitting out against Warriors to rest sore left ankle

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Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James has been downgraded to out for Thursday night’s road game against the Golden State Warriors as he continues managing a left ankle injury, the Lakers announced Wednesday.

James said at Sunday’s All-Star Game he would use the break to receive further treatment on peroneal tendinopathy. The four-time MVP hinted that he could miss the Warriors game.

According to a few NBA betting sites, the Lakers hold 11th-ranked odds to win this season’s championship. Sportsbooks are showing better odds for the Oklahoma City Thunder and Minnesota Timberwolves.

James has missed one game of back-to-back sets three times this season to manage the ankle. The 21-year veteran played only a half of Sunday’s All-Star Game to ease the workload on the ankle.

A source close to the 39-year-old mentioned that James is not expected to miss extended time. Los Angeles is confident that “the treatment will enable him to finish the season stronger,” per ESPN’s Brian Windhorst.

James had 36 points, a career-high 20 rebounds, and 12 assists in a double-overtime matchup with the Warriors in San Francisco last month. It was his third triple-double of the season. Stephen Curry recorded 46 points as well.

Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (sore left ankle) could return Friday against San Antonio Spurs

The Lakers and Warriors come out of the All-Star break tied in the loss column with three regular-season meetings left on the schedule. Los Angeles is 6-4 against Pacific Division opponents.

Per ESPN’s Basketball Power Index, Golden State holds a 74% chance of defeating the Lakers squad without James. NBA sportsbooks show Los Angeles as a 6-point underdog at Chase Center.

Through 49 games (all starts) this season, James is averaging 24.8 points, 7.2 rebounds, 7.8 assists, 1.3 steals, and 34.9 minutes per game while shooting 52% from the floor, 39.5% from 3-point range, and 74.1% at the foul line.

The 20-time All-Star scored a season-high 40 points at Oklahoma City on Dec. 23.

Furthermore, James needs only 132 points to become the first NBA player to reach 40,000 career points. Despite his minor injury, he is still slated to achieve the milestone on Monday, March 4 against Oklahoma City.

This projection is based on Bron averaging at least 25 points per game. Of course, he also became the NBA’s all-time scorer last year during a 133-130 loss to the Thunder on Feb. 7, 2023.

James has 39,868 career points as the NBA’s all-time scorer.

Golden State hosts the Lakers at 10 p.m. ET.





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