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Warriors star Klay Thompson out for season with torn Achilles

Nick Friedell joins the Dan Patrick Show to discuss the fallout from Klay Thompson's Achilles injury and why no one can replace what he brings to the Warriors on and off the court.

Klay Thompson’s leg injury is as significant as feared.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN broke the news, which was later confirmed by the Warriors.

This is devastating for both the Warriors and Thompson, who just returned to the court after missing last season with a torn ACL.

Golden State had championship aspirations with Stephen Curry and Thompson returning from injury and Draymond Green becoming more engaged as the team returned to winning. No. 2 pick James Wiseman filled an immediate need at center.

The Warriors can’t tank again. Curry and Green are too good. They’re also too old – Curry 32, Green 30 – to waste another year of their primes.

But it’ll be difficult to advance deep in the playoffs without Thompson, a premier 3-and-D shooting guard.

Golden State can seek a replacement wing with the the Andre Iguodala trade exception ($17,185,185) and/or taxpayer mid-level exception ($5,718,000). Potential trade-exception candidates:

  • Magic’s Evan Fournier
  • Bucks’ Eric Bledsoe
  • Rockets’ Eric Gordon
  • Heat’s Andre Iguodala
  • Magic’s Terrence Ross
  • Spurs’ Patty Mills
  • Pelicans’ J.J. Redick
  • Raptors’ Norman Powell

Adding another high-priced player would be expensive with the Warriors already into the luxury tax. But accepting a lower ceiling on a team that already has Curry and Green would be downright depressing.

Thompson has $157,161,600 and four years remaining on his contract. So, he has financial security.

But that deal also causes some uncomfortable long-term planning for Golden State. Once the 30-year-old Thompson recovers from this injury, how well will he play after two full seasons off and his body put through so much?