LOS ANGELES — Golden State Warriors All-Star swingman Klay Thompson said that a few moments in the Pacific Ocean on Saturday helped him clear his head after a slow start to the playoffs. After scoring 42 points combined in the first three games, Thompson scored 32 points in 40 minutes on Sunday in the Warriors’ 113-105 Game 4 win over the LA Clippers.
“I didn’t think I had bad games, but I didn’t have any big games,” Thompson said of his early series performance. “I told Jonas [Jerebko on Saturday] — we went to the beach and played some volleyball — I’m like, ‘Yo, I’m just going to jump in the ocean, and I just know that will reset my mind.’ And it worked. I don’t know if I’m going to jump [in the water] up north [in the Bay Area] because it’s freezing, but it’s something I’ll definitely contemplate if I don’t shoot the ball that well the rest of the year. But hopefully that doesn’t happen.”
Thompson started the game 7-for-7 from the field and was shooting with confidence all game, as his teammates tried to find him up and down the floor. After seeing his friend walk back into the team hotel after his trip to the beach on Saturday, Warriors star Stephen Curry had no doubt that Thompson, who spent part of his childhood in the Los Angeles area when his father, Mychal, played for the Lakers, would get things rolling in Game 4.
“It’s the home cookin’,” Curry said. “I know the Pacific Ocean is undefeated. He got his feet wet [Saturday], walked in the hotel with a wet T-shirt, with his shades on. A typical Klay type of vibe. I just had a smile on my face when I saw him because I knew what that meant. It was nice for him to show out like he did. We needed every bit of it, for sure.”
Steph Curry talks about what fueled Klay Thompson’s 32-point hometown performance against the Clippers in Game 4.
As has been the case throughout the season, the Warriors never doubted that Thompson would get rolling. His teammates and coaches have repeatedly said how confident they are in his game, even when he goes through colder stretches.
“When Klay gets going like that, it fuels the whole bench,” Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said. “You can see everybody jumping around. Everybody gets happy. We all love when Klay gets hot. It fuels our momentum. It didn’t surprise me at all. He kind of had a quiet first few games of the series, so it was only a matter of time until he broke out.”
Thompson’s offensive output came on a day when Curry was 3-for-14 from the field. Thompson walked the hallways of Staples Center with a renewed confidence, as he wore sunglasses and the hint of a smile as he headed to meet with reporters. He knows that the Warriors appear to be on a collision course with the Houston Rockets, and he hopes his team can close out this series on Wednesday in Game 5 so the Rockets don’t get much extra rest if they sweep the Utah Jazz on Monday.
“We see our opponent. They’re up 3-0,” Thompson told ESPN’s Lisa Salters after the game, in reference to the Rockets. “So we don’t want to give them any more rest days. Same with us. We don’t want to extend the series any longer than we need to. ‘Cause every game is so pivotal in the playoffs, and we’ll give our fans a show, redeem ourselves from the last time we were in Oracle, ’cause we owe ’em one.”