Warriors' sharpshooter reportedly set to test the market, holds suitors in free agency

Golden State Warriors v Atlanta Hawks
Golden State Warriors v Atlanta Hawks / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

Klay Thompson's up-and-down season seems to take a different turn almost on a daily basis, with that statement proving true again in the Golden State Warriors' last game before the All-Star break in Utah on Thursday.

After the disappointment of being demoted to the bench for the first time since his rookie season 12 years ago, Thompson stunningly responded with a season-high 35 points to lead the Warriors in their 140-137 victory over the Jazz.

Klay Thompson is reportedly set to test the free agency market, with a number of rival teams expected to be interested in the Golden State Warriors' veteran

Head coach Steve Kerr confirmed post-game that Thompson would continue coming off the bench after the All-Star break, adding another layer to the 34-year-old's future which remains well and truly up in the air.

Thompson remains extension eligible but there's been no agreement forthcoming between player and franchise since the offseason. The five-time All-Star reportedly rejected a two-year, $48 million offer, betting on himself to make more after another quality season.

That consistent production hasn't come though, complicating matters to the point where The Athletic's Shams Charania believes an extension before free agency would be a 'miracle'.

"He can go and help a team to a high degree...He's set to be a free agent at the end of the season. From everything I expect him to test the marketplace. I would expect both Florida teams. I would expect both LA teams. I would expect a couple of East Coast teams to have interest in Klay Thompson. As of right now, unless there's a miracle extension, he's going to test the marketplace."

Shams Charania

This is the first time multiple teams have been linked to Thompson as a potential free agency acquisition. The Lakers have always had a connection given his Father Mychal played five seasons and won two championships with the franchise, while he also currently serves as a radio commentator/analyst.

One would think the only way Thompson leaves is if a rival team offers substantially more than in comparison to Golden State. That's unlikely to occur, with Thompson's form hardly warranting $25-30+ million, not to mention most contending teams don't have the salary cap space to make such a deal.

However, does this change in role bring a different element to his free agency decision? You can imagine teams will use the promise of a starting role as ammunition given that's no longer secure with the Warriors.