NBA rumors: Klay Thompson medically cleared, training without restriction

NBA rumors: Klay Thompson medically cleared, training without restriction

Klay Thompson has reached the next phase of his return.

The Warriors star guard has been training without restriction on his knee and has been ramping up workouts over the past few weeks, The Athletic's Anthony Slater reported Friday, citing sources.

Per Slater, Thompson's knee was medically cleared a few weeks ago and he has been running, jumping, dunking and doing everything he's permitted to do during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. He's been going through his diligent shooting workouts but has yet to return to the Warriors' San Francisco facility since it reopened. Thompson instead has been working out in Los Angeles and in Oakland.

As of right now, players only are allowed to work out on one hoop with one coach and that coach must wear gloves. There are no three-on-three or five-on-five scrimmages allowed.

While Thompson's knee has been cleared, he now must take the time to build the rest of his body back up to NBA standards. With the 2020-21 NBA season expected to get going sometime in December, Thompson should have ample to time to get back into game shape.

Thompson was playing arguably the best basketball of his career when he tore his left ACL during Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals. While the injury robbed Thompson of a year of his prime, his recovery, along with Steph Curry's broken hand -- allowed the Warriors a year to rest and reset their dynasty after five straight trips to the NBA Finals.

[RELATED: What Paschall learned about Steph during rookie season]

By the time Thompson returns, it will be at least 17 months since he last suited up. That's a long pause for someone at the peak of their powers, but the Warriors guard is determined to help the Dubs recapture their greatness.

Thompson, Curry and the rest of the Warriors have spent a year listening to people throw dirt on their grave, claiming their run as the NBA's goliath was over.

Thompson is determined to prove all of the detractors wrong. He's reached the next phase of his rehab, and with it, the Warriors can turn their full attention to the future and their quest to return to the top of the NBA.

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Heat guard Tyler Herro studies Warriors' Klay Thompson to improve shot

Heat guard Tyler Herro studies Warriors' Klay Thompson to improve shot

Klay Thompson's shot is that of near perfection. Steph Curry might be regarded as the greatest shooter in NBA history, but his fellow Splash Brother's form is picturesque. 

Miami Heat rookie Tyler Herro is taking note, too. The shooting guard has taken advantage of his time away from the court before the NBA's restart by watching film on Thompson and other greats.

"Klay Thompson, Ray Allen, CJ McCollum, Steve Nash and Bradley Beal are the guys that’s I’ve watched, just picking different things from each player," Herro recently told reporters, via the South Florida Sun Sentinel's Ira Winderman. 

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Herro, 20, is averaging 12.9 points per game for the Heat while shooting an impressive 39.1 percent from 3-point range. As a rookie, Thompson shot 41.4 percent from deep and has a career 41.9 shooting percentage from beyond the arc. They don't make many like Klay. 

Miami's young sharpshooter is studying one specific part of Thompson's game, too.

"You know, Klay and Ray, they do the catch-and-shoot very well," Herro said. "So that's the thing that I pay attention to when I'm watching them. But every player that I watch, or the coaches have me watch, I can dissect something new or something different from their game to try to add it to mine."

[RELATED: Steph has funny prediction for Warriors-Cavs bubble rematch]

Herro and the Heat resume their season Aug. 1 against the Denver Nuggets in Orlando. In just his first season, he has helped the Heat become a contender as a feared outside shooter and will play a big role once the NBA returns. 

Rested, healthy and full of more knowledge from hours watching film, we'll soon be able to see what exactly Herro picked up from Thompson other great shooters.

Eight things Warriors must do to return to NBA championship contention

Eight things Warriors must do to return to NBA championship contention

Until the current NBA season is completed -- if it ever is -- the Warriors will remain the reigning Western Conference champions. Yes, the 15-50 Golden State Warriors.

Obviously, they didn't come anywhere near their recent level of success this season, ending their season with the worst record in the league after making five straight NBA Finals. That said, the Warriors' roster isn't anywhere near the worst in the NBA. Not even close.

Though it would seem like quite a bounce-back, a Golden State resurgence next season isn't out of the question. In fact, for many reasons, you can bank on it. But resurgence isn't what the Warriors are aiming for. They don't simply want to climb out of the cellar.

They want to win championships.

Though they have many of the key ingredients already in place, some vital developments will have to occur in order for the Warriors to get back to title contention. Some will be more easily accomplished than others, and not all of them are in Golden State's control. But if the Warriors do these eight things, they'll give themselves a chance to lift the Larry O'Brien Trophy once again.