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Klay Thompson leads all rookies in 3-point shooting percentage this season. (photo: Rocky Widner/NBAE/Getty)
For a player who is supposedly not one of the top 10 rookies in the NBA, Klay Thompson sure is getting a lot of attention. The sharp-shooting guard is the subject of several Bay Area news stories today, and they all mention how he was “snubbed” from participating in this year’s BBVA Rising Stars Challenge – an NBA All-Star Weekend event featuring the league’s top rookies and second-year players.
“I’m astounded that Klay Thompson is not in the Rookie/Sophomore All-Star game,” Head Coach Mark Jackson said earlier this month. “He’s a heck of a player and he’s only going to get better.”
Granted, Thompson struggled to start the season, most rookies do. But the son of a former No. 1 draft pick has picked up his play as of late and now ranks fourth in the NBA, and first among rookies, in 3-point percentage (.481). Thompson has averaged 11.5 points in the last six games, going 15-for-24 (.625) on 3-pointers during that stretch. His best game of his young career occurred last week in Denver, as he scored 19 points on 8-of-11 shooting in one of the team’s most satisfying wins of the season.
Thompson’s efficiency is quite rare, as he is on pace to be just the third NBA rookie since the 1989-90 season to shoot better than 45 percent on 3-pointers (’90 Drazen Petrovic - .459; ’09 Anthony Morrow - .467). His perimeter success has led to an ongoing discussion within the team of who is the best shooter on the Warriors’ roster? Watch the video below:
Despite these endorsing reviews, Thompson was not eligible to be selected by Charles Barkley or Shaquille O’Neal for the BBVA Rising Stars Challenge. Even after two players were added to the pool – Knicks guard Jeremy Lin (sophomore) and Heat guard Norris Cole (rookie) – Thompson is still on the outside looking in. However, if his career keeps progressing as it has over the first two months of the season, he can very well be playing on a much larger stage at All-Star Weekend in the coming seasons.
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