The Golden State Warriors will look to take a 2-0 series lead in the NBA Finals when they face off against the Cleveland Cavaliers later today at the Oracle Arena.
The Warriors won Game 1 113-91 on Thursday night to go 1-0 up in the series, moving them on step closer towards winning their second championship in three years. Kevin Durant was the key man for Golden State, as after 38 minutes of action, he scored 38 points with nine rebounds and eight assists.
Steph Curry was next for the Warriors with 28 points, but Klay Thompson on the other hand, had quite a dreadful performance on offense, only scoring six points with four rebounds and four assists after 36 minutes. He was only 3-of-16 shooting as well.
The lack of opportunities has lead many to believe Thompson could be on his way out of the Warriors, but what he does on defense makes up for it. The Cavaliers only managed to convert one shot out of 12 when going against him in Game 1. That's a big impact.
Speaking to reporters, Durant said the 27-year-old plays a huge impact on the success of the team despite his lack of productivity on offense because of his movement off the ball and his defense.
The Golden State star told reporters, according to Fox Sports: "Well, if he's not making shots, he's still a respected shooter and nobody's going to give him open shots if he starts to miss. So we know the gravity he pulls when he's out there, and his movement off of the ball is one of the main reasons why we're a good team.
"And his defense is the reason why we're one of the best defensive teams in the league as well.
"So when he's not shooting the ball, that doesn't take him out of his game, that doesn't lower his confidence. He just continues to keep shooting and stay aggressive on both end of the floor."
After Thompson told Monte Poole of NBC Sports that: "If I could score 6 pts a game and it gets us 4 wins and an NBA chip, I can do that every year," it seems as though he is pretty happy to stay with the Warriors, and his teams are happy for him to be there as well.
His presence on the floor has allowed more opportunities for Durant and Curry to score, and that can only mean more success for Golden State in the Finals.