As of Tuesday, Klay Thompson has played in 651 regular season games and 145 postseason games for the Golden State Warriors. He may never been as heated on the court as he was during a 134-105 loss to the Phoenix Suns.
The Warriors star received his first career ejection on Tuesday after a back-and-forth with Devin Booker got heated to the point Thompson had to be held back as officials hit him with back-to-back technical fouls.
The fun started midway through a third quarter that had already gotten chippy, with the Suns leading 81-76. Draymond Green, Chris Paul and Deandre Ayton had all received techs for various reasons, and it was amid Ayton’s that the two All-Star guards were jawing:
Minutes later, the two got chest-to-chest, triggering a double technical. Official Ed Malloy led Thompson away, but Thompson then turned his ire toward him, earning him another tech and an automatic ejection.
Thompson made sure to get his money’s worth with Malloy before storming off to the Warriors locker room. Booker confirmed after the game that Thompson “repeated it over and over” that he has four rings, something the Suns obviously do not have.
The Footprint Center crowd would see yet another technical foul later in the quarter, on a questionable take foul by Jordan Poole on Devin Booker. The seven technical fouls in the third quarter were the most seen in a quarter in the NBA since the 1996-97 season, per the TNT broadcast.
It had been a tough game for Thompson before his ejection, having shot 1-of-8 from the field (0-of-5 from 3-point range) with two points and two assists.
Booker denied any bad blood after the Suns’ blowout win, chalking up the run-in as “talking a little mess” during a postgame interview with TNT:
“I love Klay Thompson. I have from the beginning. From the draft, coming out I said I wanna be Klay Thompson. That doesn’t excuse us from competing against each other and talking a little mess with each other. So have fun with it. Big fan of his and his competitive nature. That’s that.”