NBA Finals 2022: Thompson compares Celtics series to 2015 Finals

The NBA Finals resume Friday with the Golden State Warriors trailing the Boston Celtics 2-1 heading into Game 4 — but Klay Thompson isn’t too worried.

The Warriors guard compared their current situation to the 2015 NBA Finals against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, when Golden State came back from a 2-1 deficit to win the series in six games.

“Just being down 2-1 in a championship series, we’ve been in this situation before. I’m getting big 2015 vibes,” Thompson said.

However, Skip Bayless isn’t buying it. 

On Friday’s “Undisputed,” he broke down why Thompson’s comments were a big miss despite acknowledging some similarities between the two scenarios.

“I don’t think this was false bravado. I believe this was a desperate historical reach from a man who is just flat-out desperate for any shred of hope that he can latch onto to call back the glorious past of this basketball team,” Bayless said. “It was two games to one Cleveland, with Game 4 in Cleveland, so that is a comparison. … What happened in Game 4? Steve Kerr makes, to me, the greatest strategic decision, the greatest coach’s decision I think in the history of the Finals. He says, ‘I’m gonna put Andre Iguodala into the starting lineup.’

“Into the lineup goes Iggy, and what happens to LeBron in Game 4 in his house? … LeBron goes from averaging 41 in the first three (games) to scoring only 20 (points) in Game 4. Iggy is all over him. … That changed [that] Finals. Is Iggy gonna change it tonight? I’m gonna seriously doubt that.”

Klay Thompson “getting big 2015 vibes” ahead of Game 4

Klay Thompson "getting big 2015 vibes" ahead of Game 4

Skip Bayless addresses Klay Thompson’s comments ahead of Game 4.

Bayless continued to point out that while Iguodala was the one to change the series, Thompson didn’t play a big role in the final three games.

“Here’s the other irony to Klay’s comment: When they took the series over for Games 4, 5 and 6, all of which they obviously won to close [the Cavs] out in six games, it wasn’t Klay who did the damage. Klay averaged nine points a game in the next three games, so he wasn’t doing much of anything. … He was kind of along for the ride.”

Bayless’ cohost Shannon Sharpe took it a step further, saying that there isn’t a single similarity between the two Finals series other than Golden State being down 2-1 headed into Game 4.

“Which two of the three best players on the Celtics are no longer going to play in this series? Because that’s what Klay fails to realize. Kyrie [Irving] went out in overtime in Game 1. Kevin Love never set foot in the NBA Finals. I know what Klay [is] trying to do. Klay understands what he’s up against.

“In 2015, Klay Thompson was 25 years of age,” he added. “He’s now 32 coming off two major injuries. Stephen Curry was 27. He’s 34 and just got injured in the last game. Draymond [Green] was 25, he’s now 32. How has Draymond looked in this series?”

Klay Thompson compares 2022 NBA Finals to Cavs series in 2015

Klay Thompson compares 2022 NBA Finals to Cavs series in 2015

Shannon Sharpe addresses Klay Thompson’s comments ahead of Game 4.

Thompson has averaged just 15 points, 2.7 rebounds and 2.3 rebounds on 35.1% shooting, including 31.3% from distance, through three games in these NBA Finals, even though he’s playing 36 minutes a night. 

Curry, who is averaging 31.3 points per game thus far, is expected to play in Friday’s Game 4, despite suffering an apparent leg injury in Game 3.

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