Golden State Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson is already on the defensive, and the regular season hasn't even started yet.
On Friday, the 25-year-old NBA champion responded to Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers' comments to Zach Lowe of Grantland. Rivers stated the Warriors needed "luck" to come out of the Western Conference while avoiding the Clippers and San Antonio Spurs in the postseason.
The Bay Area News Group's Diamond Leung reported Thompson's rebuttal:
If we got lucky, look at our record against them last year. I'm pretty sure we smacked them. Didn't they lose to the Rockets? Exactly. So haha. That just makes me laugh. That's funny. Weren't they up 3-1 too? Yeah, tell them I said that. That's funny. That's funny.
ESPN's Ethan Strauss also caught a quote:
The Warriors won three of four games against the Clippers last year on their way to a 67-win season, just the 10th time in NBA history a team has won that many games. Golden State practically breezed through to the championship, losing just five games in four rounds.
Los Angeles, on the other hand, needed seven games to take down the Spurs and dropped a 3-1 lead in the Western Conference Semifinals to the Houston Rockets.
Even Rivers admitted that last season the Clippers were dominated by the champions, according to Leung:
Nothing like some bulletin-board material on both sides to start off the season. With the Clippers attempting to show they are an elite squad in the Western Conference, throwing down the gauntlet against Thompson and the Warriors might not be the best idea. Something about awaking a sleeping giant.
The two teams face each other in the preseason in Los Angeles on October 20 and in the regular season on November 4 in Oakland. After Rivers and Thompson's discussion through the media, it's safe to say those games are going to have a little extra emotion.
Stats courtesy of Basketball-Reference.com