Charles Barkley told injured Golden State shooting guard Klay Thompson he thinks the Warriors’ title window is shut and they will fail to make the playoffs.
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Thompson, who is expected to miss the entire 2019-20 season as he recovers from an ACL injury, was the guest on TNT’s Inside The NBA half-time show at the Warriors’ new Chase Center arena.
Klay Thompson welcomes the Warriors fans to the new Chase Center in San Francisco
Asked about his chances of returning for Golden State this season, Thompson said: “I don’t want to rush back to get to a sixth-straight Finals if I’m not 100 per cent. Our window to win another championship is open for the next five or six years.”
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Eleven-time All-Star Barkley responded: “Number one, I hope you get back [on the court] soon but you’re wrong. I think the [Warriors title] window is shut. I don’t think they can score enough.
“I want to make another prediction. I was wrong before the game. I said [Golden State] we’re going to be the seventh or eighth seed. They are not going to make the playoffs. They just can’t score enough.”
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Barkley’s fellow pundits Kenny Smith and Candace Parker both questioned Barkley’s assessment. Smith asked: ‘You can tell that from one half of basketball?’ with Parker adding …’against the best defensive team in the Clippers?’
“Yes,” Barkley replied. “When you look at their team you say, ‘OK, Steph [Curry] can get me 30 points, D’Angelo [Russell] can get me 20, Draymond [Green], even though he is a heck of a player, is only going to be me 15. That’s not enough in the Western Conference this year.”
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Invited to respond, Thompson said: “Chuck has the right to be a little pessimistic but I think these young guys are going to step up.
“I did a shooting drill with [Warriors rookie] Jordan Poole yesterday and he smoked me three out of five spots. Glenn Robinson has plenty of experience in this league. I really like what Marquese [Chriss] has given us this training camp. We’ve kind of revived him.
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“I think it’s exciting and we’ve got the guys to get us [to the postseason] at least.”
The Warriors trailed the Clippers 65-54 at half-time and things got worse in the second half as they Clippers scored 46 points in the third quarter and ran out 141-122 victors.
Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said his team’s heavy loss to the LA Clippers ‘stinks’ but expects his players to improve
Speaking in a news conference after the game, Warriors coach Steve Kerr said of the defeat: “It doesn’t feel very good, losing stinks, but this is the reality of the NBA.
“The last five years we have been living in a world that isn’t supposed to exist. Five years, record-wise, the best stretch anybody has ever had, I believe.
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“This is reality. Nine guys 23-years-old or younger. We’re starting over in many respects. We’ve got to be patient, we’ve got to fight. We’ve got to continue to teach as a [coaching] staff. The players have to absorb and learn. We’ll get better, I know that.”
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