Two Western Conference powerhouses, the Golden State Warriors and Pheonix Suns, went at it on primetime Tuesday night.
There is nothing like a regular season NBA game with a playoff atmosphere, and basketball fans watching on television and in attendance got a real treat watching these two teams go at it so early in the season. With the Warriors coming off yet another impressive championship run and a young seasoned Suns team on the rise knocking at the door trying to get back to the Finals, things got a bit heated between the two teams.
— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) October 26, 2022
In the third quarter, Warriors legend Klay Thompson was ejected for the first time in his professional career after picking up two quick technical fouls. These techs were given after Thompson was seen visibly taunting the Sun’s bench and jawing back and forth with Suns guard Devin Booker.
In that third quarter alone, a record-tying technical fouls were given out between both teams in one quarter. Postgame, Stephen Curry had the following to say per ESPN in regard to Thompson getting tossed.
“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.”
Curry added that since the Warriors are the defending champs, teams will try to come at them, especially on the road, to get their home crowd into it. Curry and the Warriors know they have a target on their back coming off their fourth championship win in the last seven years and that every team going against them will have something to prove.When Dubs Coach Steve Kerr weighed in on Thompson’s ejection postgame, he downplayed the altercation, and talked about how D-Book and Thompson had a similar incident when Booker was first breaking into the League.
“He and Book have gotten into it a little bit over the years; they’re just competitors, both great players — I remember four or five years ago when Book was first coming up, Klay was in his prime, he went at it one night in Oracle, and the same type of thing happened,” Kerr said. “There were no ejections, but they’re both competitive, they’re guarding each other, and this is the NBA. Highest competition in the world, stuff like that happens.”
Suns Coach Monty Williams also downplayed Booker and Thompson’s interaction when spoke to the media after the game. Williams believes that the championship veteran Warriors will always bring the best out of an up-and-coming team like the Suns.
“I think both teams want it. I don’t think it’s personal at all. I think we respect them. They’re the champions,” Williams said. “So, they’re going to get our best because they are the best. So, I think a lot of the emotion is just about being competitive. We don’t take it personally at all; we just understand better that once all that stuff happens, we got to get back on focusing on being competitive and trying to win the game.”
When Booker said his two cents, the former Kentucky Wildcat said that he admires Thompson and that he’s trying to become a champion like his shooting guard contemporary.
“We’re just two competitors; I love Klay Thompson,” Booker said. “I have for a really long time. But it’s not going to excuse from us 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.”
Devin Booker spoke on the situation with Klay Thompson. Went on to say Klay was probably frustrated by the off night he was having and noted he kept going back to the 4 rings, which is what he wants pic.twitter.com/vInEsJcJnp
— Gerald Bourguet (@GeraldBourguet) October 26, 2022
This situation is not one that needs to be overanalyzed or blown out of proportion. It is just a simple case of two teams and two top players going at it; this is nothing new, especially in sports. We have all seen it repeatedly; it’s just basketball. At the end of the day, both teams and players have a great deal of respect for one another and will not let this deter them from accomplishing their true goal, a championship.
These two teams have two more matchups this season on November 16th and January 10th. If that first game did not make things clear enough, their next matchup is one that you do not want to miss!