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June 13, 2022

Klay Thompson

Golden State Warriors

Game 5: Postgame

Warriors 104, Celtics 94

Q. Klay, considering what you guys have been through over the last eight years, how does it feel to be this close to another championship?

KLAY THOMPSON: I mean, I'm not going to lie to you, it does feel good; but we've been here before, 2016, and we might have been, you know, overly eager. But so -- like it feels good, but we haven't done anything yet, and the mission still is the same. We're all eager to get to Boston and play a great game on Thursday.

Q. As someone who has been here from the beginning, how good does it feel to see other guys play the type of basketball you guys instituted years ago?

KLAY THOMPSON: Oh, it's special. I mean, buying in is one of the biggest keys to success in this league, and for what Andrew did tonight, I mean, we don't get -- we don't get more excited than when Wiggs dunks on somebody. And that really uplifts the whole team and the Bay Area. And Jordan Poole was clutch tonight, Gary Payton II, I could go down the list, we just had contributions from the whole roster.

Q. Do you think this is your best defensive series that you've played in those playoffs?

KLAY THOMPSON: It could be, but doesn't mean anything if I go out there and lay an egg in a couple days or a few days.

I'm just excited to build on it, and wow, I'm just going to be -- I've never been so excited to go to Boston, I'll tell you that.

Q. Gary Payton, a little more than a month ago, obviously, had an injury that looked like it could have ended his season. Draymond, by his own admission, played atrociously in Game 3, and they both sort of personified what you guys did on defense tonight?


Q. We have talked a lot about Draymond over the years, but what they each mean to your team defense.

KLAY THOMPSON: I mean, Gary plays bigger than any other 6-2 NBA player I've ever seen. His vert and his ability to slide in front of the ball, obviously we know where that came from, from his pops. But his vert is something special, and his improved jumpshot has also been a huge weapon for us.

Draymond, he got us going early with his pressure and his heart and getting up and down the floor. Draymond is the heart and soul of this team. I just love going to battle with those two guys. They are just gritty, throw-back type of players.

Q. The trio of you, Steph and Draymond now have one more Finals win than the trio of Tim Duncan, Manu and Tony Parker. What does that stat mean for you, someone who knows the game?

KLAY THOMPSON: Those three are some of the greatest to ever play. I feel like they played my whole life, my whole childhood. To be mentioned in the same company as them, it's humbling.

It won't mean much unless we get another win. That's awesome, but it would really add to our legacy if we closed this thing out.

Q. We often ask you guys what it's like to watch Steph when he has a really special night like did he in Game 4. What's it like having to kind of endure when he has this rare tough night? Is it added stress? How does it filter out to the rest of the team in terms of rallying around that?

KLAY THOMPSON: Steph is the best to ever shoot it. And I'll tell you what, everyone in the building, including the fans and those watching, believe the ball is going in when it leaves his fingertips.

So we're never stressed or worried about No. 30. He has done so much and elevated this franchise to a place where it was hard to even imagine that he has leeway, and he can have a bad night.

I just know he'll respond. He's one of the greatest competitors I've ever been around. And he's a perfectionist, like myself. I know he'll be thinking about the shots he missed. And that's a good thing, because Thursday, hopefully, most of the time, he regresses to the mean, and it's scary when he does.

Q. Tonight is the first time Steph didn't make a three in a regular season or postseason game after 233 straight games. That's the longest streak in NBA history.

KLAY THOMPSON: By a long shot.

Q. All-time great shooter like yourself, can you even begin to contextualize what that streak is like?

KLAY THOMPSON: It's hard to. I mean, the man is a magician with the ball in his hands and really just -- what's the word? He just redefined what the point guard position is capable of.

I've never seen a player who can shoot off the ball screen or the pin-down or anywhere like Steph. I just have been very blessed to share the backcourt with him. I've seen him do so many amazing things; it's become routine and expected, and it shouldn't be, because he really is a transcendent talent that we'll never see again.

Q. Growing up, what did you learn from your pops about the Lakers-Celtics rivalry, and even though you're obviously with a different team, how has that shaped your experience facing them in the Finals so far?

KLAY THOMPSON: Well, when you face a team with the history like the Celtics, it's awesome. They have had some of the greatest players to ever dribble the ball, all the way to Cousy, and Russell, to Bird, McHale, Parrish, and watching Paul Pierce and Kobe go at it, and now to add to that legacy, it's great.

Growing up, we would watch those games, and you could just feel the tension in the Forum, or at the Boston Garden, and I know he looks back on those with so much joy as I do, too. Because the Lakers-Celtics rivalry really built the NBA, you can say, and it's one of the greatest rivalries in the world.

So to kind of be able to be a part of that with Golden State and Boston, it's a new chapter, and it's just awesome to be here. It's like a dream, honestly. Like compared to I what was doing last year in this building at this time of the year, it's a dream.

Q. How did your recent retreat on the water get you ready for Game 5?

KLAY THOMPSON: Man, that's a great question. You know, it doesn't matter what time of year it is, the Bay, it can be old, but when it's one of those days when it's low 60s and the sun is shining, I make it a point to jump in the ocean. I just think the ocean has healing properties that a pool might not have or a cold tub.

And just to be immersed in nature like that, it really makes me happy, and just your whole body feels so great when you get out of that cold water and you just feel like -- honestly, you just feel a little closer to God when you look up at beautiful skies and you're just in the ocean. I'm an Aquarius, so I just have always loved the water my whole life. It really is my happy place, besides the hardwood.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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