By: Nina Samone
Two major surgeries, two years of rehabilitation and watching from the sidelines were not enough to keep Klay Thompson down – as he is back and showing life of the superstar he has been before.
On Thursday May 26th, Thompson scored 32 points in Golden State’s 120-110 win over the Dallas Mavericks, leading his team back to the NBA finals for the sixth time in eight years.
The only other teams to accomplish six NBA finals in eight years were the Michael Jordan Bulls of the 90s, Magic Johnson Lakers of the 80s and Bill Russell’s Celtics in the 50s and 60s.
This feat is a huge celebratory moment for the Warriors as they reminisce and prepare themselves to return to a familiar stage, many of the team dancing and celebrating even before the final buzzer sounded.
“It’s hard to put into words really,” Thompson said. “This time last year, I was just starting to jog again and get up and down the court. Now to be feeling like myself, feeling explosive, feeling sure in my movements, I’m just grateful.”
In 2019, Thompson tore his ACL in an NBA Finals Game 6 match against the Toronto Raptors. Shortly after, he tore his right Achilles’ tendon before the 2020-21 season. Thompson finally saw action again in January after being sidelined.
There seems to be almost no trace of former injury now, as the star scored 19 in the first half against the Mavericks, helping the Warriors end the half with a 17-point lead.
In the first four games of the series, Thompson only had seven 3-pointers. This time around, he had a record-setting eight for the fifth time in the playoffs.
The next step for the Warriors is hosting the winner of the Eastern Conference finals between the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat on June 2nd, in Game 1 of the NBA finals.
Dubow, Josh. May 27th, 2022. NBA. “Warriors beat Mavericks 120-110 to return to NBA Finals.”