NBA Rumor: Klay Thompson to Lakers?

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Carlos Boozer: But to help in that regard, they can have a chance to make some real noise, especially depending on what happens with the Golden State Warriors. There’s all this news about KD (Kevin Durant) and who knows what happens with Boogie (DeMarcus Cousins). I’m hearing that Klay (Thompson) might want to go to the Lakers. I don’t know why they would break up, because they got a rock star thing going on over there that reminds me of the Bulls with (Michael) Jordan and (Scottie) Pippen in the ’90s of going to the Finals every year, but whatever happens, if that marriage gets divorced and some of those players leave, and if any of those free agents want to come to Utah and join with Donovan Mitchell and the rest of that crew, they could really make some noise. I like that foundation, I just thought they were a player away, like an All-Star player away from being a real contender.

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While he didn’t go into detail on Durant besides pointing out the obvious fact that the Warriors want to re-sign him, Wojnarowski did offer some interesting insight into a potential destination for Thompson. If the Warriors don’t offer him the max, Thompson could look to join the Los Angeles Clippers. Via ESPN: “If they come with a five-year, $190 million max deal for Klay Thompson, that’s done on July 1. He’s going into the new building with Steph Curry. If they try to do anything less than that, you can expect Klay Thompson to be out in free agency. Watch not for the Lakers then, but the Clippers.”

That doesn’t mean he doesn’t get bugged around his neighborhood, where strangers approach him in the grocery store or at the coffee shop and ask if Klay is coming back to Los Angeles to team up with LeBron James and lead the franchise back into the postseason. “I can’t go anywhere,” Mychal said. “Ultimately it’s a compliment: Lakers fans want him to play here. But I don’t think that way. I think the Lakers are gonna be fine. I don’t see Klay coming out here as a savior.”

Chris Haynes: “With Klay Thompson, Golden State needs to have a max offer on the table right when midnight hits [on July 1, 2019]. If you want to wait until 12:01 to put down that max contract, you’re opening the door for the Lakers. Period. If they want to take care of business, [they’ll offer the max right away]. And I think they will, since they have that brand new Chase Center opening up and they want to have their core guys on the roster going into that arena.”

Adrian Wojnarowski: “The best-case scenario for the Lakers is they add Anthony Davis, and then Golden State doesn’t offer Klay Thompson a max contract. They try to get Klay to take a little less than the max and if that happens I’m told Klay’s attention will be on the Lakers if they have Anthony Davis. Now we’ll see what Golden State does there. They’ve got a lot of players to pay going forward. They want to re-sign Kevin Durant. They certainly want to re-sign Klay, they’ve got Draymond Green coming up in free agency the following year.”

Thompson will turn 29 this season and will hit unrestricted free agency for the first time in his career next summer. With upward of a decade more of professional hoops remaining, Thompson could decide to wear a different uniform. And were he to hit free agency, it would be at a time when his particular skill set has never been more valued by this league. Every single team has shooting at the top of its wish list. The Lakers would definitely love a shot at pairing him with LeBron James. But the expectation across the league is that Thompson will re-sign with Golden State. Executives I’ve spoken with said they would be shocked if Thompson left the Warriors.

One name that’s flown under the radar to a large extent — despite a seamless fit and connections to the Lakers organization — is Klay Thompson, and Ramona Shelburne of ESPN says his name has come up with those she’s spoken to in an appearance on “ESPNLA Mornings with Keyshawn, LZ and Travis”: “In terms of who they target next year, it’s whoever wants to come. “My feeling about it, my sense from just talking to people in and around this (is that) one, it’s a little early, but I think they like Mychal’s boy. I think that would be the guy, in terms of skillset and how that would fit. Obviously Kawhi, he’s a great player as well, but we’ll see if he stays in Toronto now. But I think they like Klay (Thompson).”
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