NBA: Thompson 'unlikely' to return this season, suggest Warriors coach Kerr

Klay Thompson tore his ACL during Game six of the NBA Finals in June, so Steve Kerr expected that he would miss a significant amount of time.

Klay Thompson, Steve Kerr   -  Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Klay Thompson may not be able to return to the court this season and Golden State Warriors' coach Steve Kerr has started preparing without the star player in the picture.

The Warriors star tore his ACL during Game 6 of the NBA Finals in June, so it was expected that he would miss a significant amount of time.

Even through reports surfaced that he could be back after the All-Star Break in 2020, Kerr is taking a more pragmatic approach to Thompson's recovery.

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"It's unlikely that he's going to play this year. So we have to understand that," the Warriors coach said on NBC Sports Bay Area. "You have to look at it realistically. I had an ACL [tear] in college, and I missed a whole season. Generally, an ACL for a basketball player is a full year recovery, and if it's a full year for Klay, that puts them out for the season.

"We've kind of left the door open in case the rehab goes perfectly and the doctors say he can go. But the reality is, on April 1, that's the nine-month mark. ... April versus nine months post-op for an ACL."

It's rare that a player is able to return in nine months from a torn ACL. Derrick Rose, Jabari Parker and Zach LaVine all missed closer to a year with similar injuries.

Keeping Thompson out for the year likely will be better in the long run, since his possible return at the end of the season would likely see him weaker and rusty due to the recovery process.

The Warriors will open its season Thursday against Los Angeles Clippers.