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Getting to Know: Golden State Warriors Klay Thompson

FAST FACTS

Name: Klay Alexander Thompson

Born: February 8, 1990 (age 29) in

Los Angeles, California

Position: Shooting guard

All Star Games: 5

NBA Champion: 3 times

Thompson is the son of former NBA

player Mychal Thompson.

College: Washington State (2008–2011)

NBA draft: 2011 / Round: 1 / Pick: 11th overall. Selected

by the Golden State Warriors

Favorite NBA ball player growing up: Kobe Bryant

2019 Salary: $18,988,725

Who taught you to love the game of basketball?

Definitely my dad. He taught me the passion for the

game. I really love the game because of him. I watched it

so much growing up, and he loves it so much to this day.

His life is pretty much basketball.

He loves it and being around the

team and the organization. My love

of hoops comes from him, and just

my simple fundamentals. He gave

me a ball really young and taught

me my form, how to dribble, how

to pass at a young age, so I give him

a lot of credit.

At what point did you start thinking

about playing in the NBA?

Probably the beginning of my

sophomore year of high school.

I was in a zone. I was playing well, and I knew that my

freshman year I had a good year. Making all-freshman

was great. But I just knew if I could do it this well, there

could be a spot for me in the league. And my dad told me

that as well. He said, “Klay, the way you can shoot it, handle

it and pass it, you can definitely make it in the NBA.”

He was telling me that when I was really young, though.

Can you, as best you can, give me a sense of what it’s

like to play alongside three legitimate All-Stars every

night? It makes my life easy, I’ll tell you that much. It can

be any of us to go off every night. Draymond can get you

a near triple-double every night. Steph can do his thing,

just rain threes, push the pace. KD is probably the most

effortless scorer I’ve ever played with. I see it on the road

a lot, when we go to these other arenas. These guys have

their individual fan base themselves, guys like Steph and

KD, and then you pile that on top of the success our Warriors

team has had, it’s cool to see this fan base we have

on the road. It makes an 82-game season a ton of fun.

How do you fight complacency? Why is it important

for Klay Thompson to win year after

year? You just want to be mentioned with all the

legends. You want to be mentioned with all the

teams that will live forever. The Showtime Lakers.

The Bulls. The Kobe-Shaq Lakers. Teams that

stood the test of time. I grew up watching them.

And nothing is ever guaranteed. I thought 2016,

that year was guaranteed to hang another banner

but obviously we didn’t. With injuries or free

agency, you never know how long one team is

going to stay together.

What’s your best memory from going to All-Star

Weekends? I got two. This one’s kind of combined,

but the Three-Point Contest, me vs. Steph, three years

in a row (2015 and 2016), was a lot of fun. The other

weekend was probably two years ago, being able to be

around Kobe Bryant in his last year as an All-Star, in his

20th season, just because I grew up watching him and I

wanted to be an NBA two-guard one day. To be there in

his final chapter was surreal for me. That’s when I felt like

I really made it.

What’s your most memorable moment in the NBA?

Besides the championships, because that’s by far my

best moments, the game a couple of years ago against

Sacramento where I scored 37 points in a quarter. I just

never thought I would own an NBA record growing up.

What’s the one thing you’ve been able to do over the

last few years because of all your team’s success that

made you think, ‘I can’t believe I get to do this?

Probably going to the White House to see Obama. That

was a shock. I never really thought I would get to go inside

or go there as a champion. That was really cool.