Shooter Klay Thompson, a four-time NBA champion, is discussing a new contract with the Golden State Warriors as he enters the last year of his current agreement. Despite the fact that many considered this as a crucial step in the Warriors’ franchise development, Thompson himself didn’t seem concerned.
“It’s not going to be a thing,” Thompson said in an interview with The Athletic. “The fact that I’m going into my 13th season – that alone – it gives me such peace of mind. Granted, I’ve made money, I’ve been able to take care of my family, myself, the people I love. But when I started playing this game, I never once thought I’m playing the game because I’m going to be rich and famous. Never did.”
In his 10 years in the league, Thompson averaged 19.8 points and 3.1 triples at 41.6 percent a game with the Warriors. He missed two seasons due to injuries. He has signed three contracts with the organization so far: a four-year, $9.7 million rookie agreement; a four-year, $69 million initial extension; and the present five-year, $189.9 million contract.
“I don’t need to go into this year and … I know if I just do my job and I’m in shape and I compete at my highest level, I’m going to make money in this league for a long time,” Thompson said. “So I don’t worry about it. I’m blessed beyond measure. Obviously you want to make the most in the window you have as an athlete. But I’m not going to let that get in the way of winning a championship. When you win, everything else will be taken care of.”
Last year, there were rumors that Thompson sought a max contract, which would have cost the Warriors an estimated $50 million in annual pay. However, this is very improbable. For the 2023–24 season, the club already has the highest salary of almost $225 million. With at least three years remaining on their current contracts, Stephen Curry, Andrew Wiggins, and Draymond Green will collectively earn about to $100 million this season, and that amount will only rise. As a result, the Warriors, who have recently become well-known for their double-track approach to franchise development, cannot afford to overpay Thompson for the next four to five years.
The Warriors should retain Thompson, however, not just because he was a crucial part of their dynasty team from 2015 to 2019 but also because of his special position. Thompson is one of the NBA’s top five 3-point shooters all-time. He continues to be essential to the Warriors on this side of the ball despite his deteriorating defensive play because of his height, strength, and experience.
When Wiggins and Green extended their contracts with the Warriors, they both consented to salary reductions. Thompson will be doing the club a great favor if he follows suit. Some NBA execs, citing Bleacher Report, think he’ll get a four-deal for $30 to $35 million annually.
“I wouldn’t want to go anywhere else. To play for one franchise, man? That’s so rare. In any sport. Football. Baseball. Basketball. Australian Rules Football. To play for one club is insane,” Thompson said. “It’s some real legendary stuff. Even what Udonis Haslem did. He’s revered in Miami. Locally. That’s what I cherish. Going around the country, going around the world and people from Northern California or Warriors fans in general are just so prideful about the Warriors. And I was here before banners were hung up. So in a way, it’s our baby. You want to ride it out. I’ve just been so lucky to be a part of this franchise. It’d be so hard to envision myself in another uniform.”