Thomp­son shrugs off in­jury, fin­ishes strong

The Mercury News Weekend - - LOCAL NEWS - By Melissa Rohlin mrohlin@ba­yare­anews­group.com

OAK­LAND » There was a scary mo­ment for Klay Thomp­son in Game 1 of The NBA Fi­nals.

It hap­pened with 6:15 lef t in the f irst quar­ter when JR Smith ran over to con­test a pass to Thomp­son but lost con­trol , slid­ing into his leg.

Thomp­son fel l onto the ground, slap­ping the court with his hand and rolling in pain.

He even­tu­ally limped off the court, im­me­di­ately head­ing to the War­riors’ locker room to be eval­u­ated.

But in a stroke of good news for the War­riors — who beat the Caval iers 124- 114 in over­time — Thomp­son was cleared to star t the sec­ond quar­ter af­ter sus­tain­ing what the team called a lef t lat­eral leg con­tu­sion.

Thomp­son had x- rays af­ter the game, which were neg­a­tive.

He was sore — but said there ’ s no doubt he wi l l be on the cour t for Game 2 on Sun­day.

“I’m just looking for­ward to get­ting 100 per­cent,” Thomp­son said af­ter the game Thurs­day. “But I’m not missing Sun­day.’

Thomp­son said didn’t think Smith ten­tional ly t r ied hurt him.

“I’m go­ing to give him the ben­e­fit of the doubt,” Thomp­son said. “I think he was go­ing for the bal l . I don’t think it was in­ten­tional.”

Thomp­son wasn’t ex­actly shaken up af ter the in­ci­dent, f ir­ing a 35- foot shot in the first 10 sec­onds of the sec­ond quar­ter.

He went on to f in­ish with 24 points on 50 per­cent shoot­ing from the field, in­clud- ing mak­ing five of his 10 shots from be­yond the arc.

It was his 10th 20plu s point per for - mance of the playof fs, and he made a cou­ple of key shot s for the War r ior s , inc lud­ing scor­ing two 3- point - ers in over­time.

Thomp­son, how­ever, said he was a bit hob­bled af­ter he re­turned.

He de­scribed the in­jury as a “mus­cle that got strained a l it t le bit ,” adding that he was happy it wasn’ t worse.

“I might not have been as ex­plo­sive as I wanted to be, but I al­ways know my shoot­ing will be there,” he said.

When Thomp­son fell to the ground, there was a col lec­tive gasp at Or­a­cle Arena.

“It kind of sucked the en­ergy out of the arena,” Kevon Looney said.

Stephen Curry ac­knowl­edged that he even felt a bit guilty.

“I threw a def lec­tive pass and put him in that po­si­tion,” Curry said. “I was feel­ing a type of way about it. You go away wor r ied and con­cerned.

“He goes to the locker room and you hope he’s okay.”

War­riors’ coach Steve Kerr was sim­i­larly fear­ful.

“It was a scary play,” Kerr said. “It looked pret ty bad. . . I didn’ t know if he was go­ing to be able to come back or not.”

But Thomp­son nev­er­had a doubt.

“Know­ing I can’t do any more dam­age to it and it’s just a pain tolerance thing, I’m go­ing to play,” Thomp­son said.

He even went on to make a vow for Game 2.

“I’ l l be even that much bet­ter Sun­day,” he said. “I know it.”

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