- Klay Thompson got ejected from a game for the first time in his career Tuesday.
- Thompson and Devin Booker got into it, with the two star guards exchanging words and later going face to face.
- After the game, Booker said Thompson repeatedly reminded him that he’s won four championships while Booker has not.
The typically reserved Klay Thompson was ejected for the first time in his career after getting into it with the Phoenix Suns’ Devin Booker.
The chirping between Thompson and Booker began in the third quarter, when Thompson stripped Booker of the ball while Booker attempted a stepback three, knocking it out of bounds. Booker and Thompson began exchanging words, continuing down the court and through a timeout.
Thompson picked up two technicals in rapid succession after bumping Booker and getting face to face with the Suns star.
After the game, which the Suns won, 134-105, Booker said Thompson kept repeating that he has won four championships, while Booker doesn’t have any.
“They have four rings, repeated over and over, and they do, and they did,” Booker told reporters.
Booker, however, said the altercation wasn’t personal, saying he loves Thompson.
“We’re just two competitors,” Booker said. “I love Klay Thompson. I have for a really long time. But it’s not going to excuse us from being competitive and talking to each other. I’ve always admired his game, how he plays on both ends of the ball. And obviously, the rings speak for themselves.”
Stephen Curry, for his part, praised Thompson for being fiery.
“After he got thrown out, he had a lot more to say, which I love,” Curry said. “The back and forth is a part of [the game], and I like that he’s engaged in that respect because it matters to him.”
It was an emotional game all around, as seven technicals were handed out in the third quarter alone.
Thompson may have been a bit perturbed by his struggles as well, as he shot 1-of-8 in 19 minutes. He is shooting 35.6% from the field and 28.6% from three to start this season on limited minutes — a precaution as Thompson still makes his way back from a torn ACL and torn Achilles that cost him two seasons. Thompson grumbled about the restrictions before the game while speaking to reporters.
After the game, Kerr noted Thompson’s intensity and said there’s a long way to go.
“Klay cares so much about his own impact on the team,” Kerr said. “He wants it so badly, and he’s trying to force it right now. He’s trying too hard. But he’s done that many times, even before the injuries. So I’ll remind him: There are 78 games to go.”