OAKLAND–Count Klay Thompson among the growing contingent of NBA players who want the upcoming All-Star draft televised.
On Tuesday evening, Thompson was voted into the All-Star Game by Western Conference coaches, which means he and teammate Draymond Green will be on the board when captain Steph Curry is on the clock with the first draft pick of All-Star reserve players.
While LeBron James has the first choice in the draft for starting players, Curry is entitled to selecting the first All-Star reserve to fill out his roster. Thompson said Tuesday he won’t lobby for his teammate to draft him, but he is campaigning for the NBA to televise the draft so he can make fun of the player that’s selected last.
“No I’m just happy to be there, man,” Thompson said. “It’s an honor to be an All-Star and I’m not going to, I’ll probably actually request a trade if he doesn’t pick me. I’m just kidding. But it’ll be fun. I’m actually pretty excited for that. I wish they would announce it publicly cause I think it would be hilarious who’s the last pick. But it’s still awesome just to be there. Being an All-Star, I don’t even care if I was last pick, it would just be fun to poke fun at that person.”
While Thompson finished with the third most fan votes among Western Conference guards, it wasn’t enough to earn him a starting nod. Instead, he had to rely on coaches to ensure he would have the opportunity to compete at the Staples Center in February, but he admitted he never thought twice about the potential of missing out on the contest.
“I never sweat. I never sweated it,” Thompson said. “I’m a positive thinker so I was hoping I would be there.”
With Curry, Thompson, Green and Kevin Durant slated to represent the Warriors for the second straight season, Golden State will become the first team to have four All-Stars in two consecutive years. A full 33 percent of the 12 players coming out of the Western Conference call Oracle Arena home, and that’s an accomplishment that means a lot to the Warriors’ starting shooting guard.
“I’m excited, Draymond is excited. It’s great to play with Steph and KD. I think it’s great they’re award-winning, there’s so many deserving guys so for us to all four go it’s really special,” Thompson said. “For us, for that to be the first time in NBA history that four guys go in two consecutive years is pretty incredible so I’m definitely going to enjoy it. I can’t wait to play because I have so many friends and family that went to high school down there so it’s going to be a real special feeling. If you would have told me graduating high school that I would have been playing in an NBA All-Star game in 10 years, I probably wouldn’t have believed you so I’m pretty excited.”