Fewer minutes: Klay Thompson
Thompson is a legend and one of the all-time great Warriors. This is no knock on his accomplishments. The five-time All-Star is one of the best shooters in NBA history and helped the franchise win four rings. It appears that injuries and age are catching up to him, and Golden State needs to reevaluate how they can maximize his talent.
Thompson is shooting a career-worst 40.7 percent from the field and 36.3 percent on his 3-point attempts, even after his incredible performace against the Clippers on Dec. 14. The jumpers just are not falling, and his defense has slipped too. That leaves Klay with a 0.1 VORP and well below-average win shares per 48 minutes. The Warriors cannot afford to start and play him 30-plus minutes every night unless his production improves.
Thompson is in the final year of his contract, and the two sides are rumored to be far apart (subscription required) in extension talks. Is the lack of future clarity playing a role in his struggles? The Warriors may be forced to explore Thompson’s trade market before the Feb. 8 deadline if things do not improve.
It is time for the Golden State Warriors to make some changes. They won four championships with this core, so it is difficult to give up on them. The Dubs are in danger of missing the postseason entirely. Without action, things could continue to crumble. Difficult decisions must be made, so stay tuned.