Klay Thompson has been huge for the Golden State Warriors in the midst of a seven-game road trip.
The Golden State Warriors played their fifth road game of a seven-game road swing on Wednesday night against the Miami Heat. The road trip began before the All-Star Break and the Heat have two games left before they return home, where they have 17 home games remaining as they chase history.
At this point of the season, a seven-game road trip has provided a big test for the Warriors as they look to chase history and the best record in NBA history. Wednesday night’s game against the Heat provided the feel of a playoff atmosphere and the two teams had one of the best games of the regular season to date. In the end, it was two big threes by Stephen Curry that gave the Warriors the win. However, it was Klay Thompson that came through the biggest for the Warriors in the fourth quarter.
Thompson had 17 points in the fourth quarter and finished with 33 points of his own. In fact, Thompson has been the catalyst in all five games thus far on the road trip for the Warriors. The Warriors’ stats Twitter account had an interesting statistic about Thompson’s road trip thus far during the game.
With the season winding down and history in play, a seven-game road trip is something that everyone knew would test the Warriors’ mettle. That’s why the importance of Thompson stepping up these past five games have been huge.
Here’s a look at each of his five games on the road trip thus far.
At Phoenix Suns – Wednesday, February 10, 2016
The young, scrappy Suns tried to keep pace with the Warriors in this won, as the Warriors won it 112-104 in their final game before the All-Star Break. In this game, Thompson had 24 points, including five huge three pointers against the Suns.
- Points: 24
- Field-goal percentage: 40% (8-20)
- Three-point percentage: 38.5% (5-13)
At Portland Trail Blazers – Friday, February 19, 2016
This was of course the game where the Warriors came out absolutely flat out of the All-Star Break and the Portland Trail Blazers absolutely took it to them the entire night. In fact, this was the only game during the road swing that Thompson didn’t shoot the ball at least 20 times. He also only attempted five three-pointers in this game as well.
- Points: 23
- Field-goal percentage: 50% (8-16)
- Three-point percentage: 40% (2-5)
At Los Angeles Clippers – Saturday, February 20, 2016
A night after being waxed by the Trail Blazers, many wondered just how the Warriors would come out of the gate against their rivals. They came out firing on all cylinders and didn’t need to rally like their first road game against the Clippers this season. Thompson was the catalyst behind the Warriors’ win with 32 huge points and four big threes. He shot a high volume of shots, which has become a drastic indicator of the team’s success.
- Points: 32
- Field-goal percentage: 50% (11-22)
- Three-point percentage: 44.4% (4-9)
At Atlanta Hawks – Monday, February 22, 2016
This was a classic instance of the Warriors taking their foot off the pedal and allowing the Hawks to go on a crazy surge to get right back in the game. The Warriors finally locked down and they pulled away with the win on the road at Atlanta. Statistically, Thompson shot the second-most amount of shots that he has shot on this road trip and the team benefited as a result. He also shot an insane 14 thee-pointers.
- Points: 27
- Field-goal percentage: 43.5% (10-23)
- Three-point percentage: 35.7% (5-14)
At Miami Heat – Wednesday, February 24, 2016
The Warriors’ win at the Heat was Thompson’s shining moment of the road trip so far. He had 17 fourth-quarter points and the Warriors won a huge game against a good opponent on the road. He had his highest volume of shots on the road trip and really unloaded from deep.
- Points: 33
- Field-goal percentage: 52% (13-25)
- Three-point percentage: 50% (4-8)
Klay Thompson having success as a volume shooter is nothing profound or groundbreaking, but it has been the key to this road trip for the Warriors. Not only has been pumping up 20-plus shots a game, but it’s clear that the higher volume of shots he takes, the more success the Warriors have had on this trip across the league.
While Stephen Curry makes the engine run for the team, when Thompson shoots more, the team wins. The Warriors have two road games remaining on their road trip and if they end up finishing their road trip 6-1, then it will be a massive success in their pursuit of history.
If there’s been one player that has stood out the most on this trip, it’s Thompson.