Warriors' Klay Thompson pinpoints biggest challenge of torn ACL rehab

Warriors' Klay Thompson pinpoints biggest challenge of torn ACL rehab

Klay Thompson felt he was at the peak of his powers when he tore his ACL last June. Rehabbing from the injury has required a lot of physical work, but it arguably has necessitated even more mentally.

"I've been so used to playing 78-plus games a year,” the Warriors star said in the recently released “Above the Waves,” a short documentary about his rehab. “With playoffs, 100. But you can either, you know, feel sorry for yourself, or you can work even harder. It's not just about getting your hours in the gym or your rehab. The psychological hurdles are probably the biggest things I need to overcome."

Thompson has not played in a game since tearing his ACL in Game 6 of the Warriors’ NBA Finals loss to the Toronto Raptors. Golden State ruled the “Splash Brother” out for the remainder of the season in February, and Warriors coach Steve Kerr told NBC Sports Bay Area’s Logan Murdock back in October that he didn’t expect Thompson to suit up in the 2019-20 season.

Kerr told The Athletic’s Tim Kawakami in March after the NBA suspended its season due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that Thompson was “crushed” not to play this season, though Thompson had joined his teammates for some drills. Thompson had played no fewer than 66 games in a regular season prior to this year.

"This is an inexact science,” he said of his rehab. “It's not a mathematical equation. It's about being consistent and training the mind to be fearless. That's what this year has given me. It's a recharging."

[RELATED: Why Draymond should be No. 3 overall pick in 2012 re-draft]

Thompson said in the documentary that he expects himself -- and the Warriors -- to return to their winning ways next season. Golden State had the NBA’s worst record (15-50) with both Thompson and Steph Curry sidelined for all but a handful of games this season, ending a streak of seven playoff appearances and five trips to the NBA Finals.

Not that Thompson needed any extra motivation.

"I want to get back healthy, 100 percent,” Thompson said. “Because I want to make sure this never happens again."

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

Draymond Green, Charles Barkley team up on new TV show 'The Arena'

Draymond Green, Charles Barkley team up on new TV show 'The Arena'

Draymond Green and Charles Barkley are about to be on the same team.

The Warriors forward and NBA Hall of Famer will be part of a panel on TNT's new show "The Arena," which will debut July 20.

Draymond and Barkley -- who have attacked each other publicly over the years -- will be joined by host Cari Champion and 2006 NBA Finals MVP, Dwyane Wade.

"The cinematic features will examine the COVID-19 pandemic, Black Lives Matter, systemic racial injustices and the changing landscape of society since the NBA postponed play through the point of view of players, NBA teams, their fans and communities," per a press release. "The five-part series will also include contributions from leading voices in sports and entertainment, such as renowned journalist Jemele Hill, rapper and activist Killer Mike, Academy Award-winning filmmaker, Lesley Chilcott, among others."

Some very serious conversations will be had, so it'll be interesting to see if Draymond and Barkley address and/or laugh at their past beef.

[RELATED: Barkley fires back at Draymond by using boy band analogy]

It's possible they avoid it altogether and solely focus on the much more important topics at hand.

Follow @DrewShiller on Twitter and Instagram

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

Nick Wright claims LeBron James gets two rings for beating 2016 Warriors

Nick Wright claims LeBron James gets two rings for beating 2016 Warriors

Nick Wright will say anything to try to buttress his belief that LeBron James is the best basketball player of all time.

And the very opinionated TV personality went to the extreme Monday on his Fox Sports 1 morning show "First Things First."

"I'm making a proclamation today. Everyone always tries to say, 'Six rings, six rings -- LeBron can't be the greatest ever until he has six rings.' It's a facile argument but I'll engage in it for this moment," he said. "We all know LeBron officially-unofficially got credit for two rings when he came from 3-1 down and beat a 73-win (Warriors) team -- sent Draymond (Green) crying to his car to call Kevin Durant. So right now he's at four.

"Before the stoppage happened, the Lakers were playing their best ball of the season. They get thrown off course, Giannis (Antetokounmpo) is able to get healthy, other things happen that make it harder. Then they lose (Avery) Bradley, now they've lost (Rajon) Rondo.

"When they win the title this year, it counts as another two -- which means LeBron and (Michael) Jordan will both have six rings."

Yes, this actually happened.

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

Conventional wisdom says Wright was 100 percent kidding, and simply got on his soapbox for entertainment purposes. But with him, he probably just was 97 percent joking.

And since Wright mentioned Draymond, here is a friendly reminder: In the 2016 NBA Finals, LeBron averaged 24.8 points, 8.3 assists and 5.8 turnovers the first four games. Then, everything changed when Draymond was suspended for Game 5. Over the final three games of the series, LeBron averaged 36.3 points, 9.7 assists and 2.7 turnovers.

[RELATED: Draymond reveals team he sees as favorite to win NBA title]

It also didn't help that Andrew Bogut missed Games 6 and 7, and that Harrison Barnes went 5-for-32 from the field over the final three games. But we digress. The Cleveland Cavaliers won the series and that's a scientific fact.

You want another fact? LeBron has won three championships and he will have four if the Los Angeles Lakers capture this season's title in Orlando.

Follow @DrewShiller on Twitter and Instagram