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NBA Finals

Warriors star Klay Thompson’s slump busting secret? His own YouTube highlights.

Warriors star Klay Thompson is never hesitant to let fly.Ezra Shaw/Getty

When Warriors star Klay Thompson is experiencing a shooting slump, sometimes he’ll turn to YouTube, type in “Game 6 Klay,” and rewatch some of the highlights from his postseason career. There are plenty of memorable moments for him to relive, as recent as his 30-point performance in Game 6 of this year’s Western Conference semifinals.

The tape is intended to keep Thompson’s confidence up, to remind him of what he is capable of producing, even in high-pressure situations. After missing back-to-back seasons with a torn ACL and torn Achilles’ tendon, Thompson stressed the importance of maintaining his mental strength.

“That’s the beauty of playing in today’s age,” Thompson said Tuesday afternoon. “You can go on YouTube and look up all your great moments.”


Through two games of the NBA Finals, Thompson’s numbers are low and inefficient: 10 of 33 from the field and just 4 of 15 on 3-pointers. After watching some film, Thompson acknowledged his shot seemed “a little rushed.” While the Celtics have defended him well, especially Jaylen Brown, he’s also misfired on multiple open shots.

Klay Thompson has yet to really get on track offensively to this point in the NBA Finals.Jim Davis/Globe Staff

So, as he does, Thompson turned to YouTube on Monday in hopes of picking himself up. He’s not panicking. And he’s definitely not going to stop shooting.

“For me, it’s about keeping that same mindset of shooters shoot,” Thompson said. “I’d rather go down swinging than being gun-shy.”

Forward Draymond Green said he’d probably poke fun at Thompson if he ever caught him watching his own highlights. But he didn’t downplay the exercise.

“If you can go back to that, just a reminder, like, I know I can do that,” Green said. “I know what I’m capable of. I know I can go back. I can feel that. It gets you to feeling good about yourself. I think that’s a very big deal. I think that’s an underrated thing. It’s the power of the mind.”


Warriors coach Steve Kerr sounds hopeful Thompson will be able to turn things around.

“I think he’s just pressing a little bit,” he said. “He just wants so badly to do well that he’s taking some bad ones. I’m not particularly concerned about it because this isn’t the first time it’s happened. Klay has a way of responding to mini slumps or whatever you want to call them.”

The Warriors are certainly hoping Thompson can get it going. The lack of consistent offense only increases the burden on point guard Stephen Curry, while third-year shooting guard Jordan Poole, another source of Golden State’s offense, has been struggling, too.

Thompson noted he’d rather shoot 4 of 19 from the field and win by 20 than 13 of 19 and lose by 10. Still, he recognizes he needs to play better — and he knows he’s capable. Just type “Game 6 Klay” into YouTube.

Could Thompson get a confidence boost via YouTube before Wednesday's Game 3?Matthew J Lee/Globe staff

“This is nothing I’m immune to,” he said. “I’ve been through shooting slumps before. The best part is, it’s how you respond. Come Game 3, I’ll probably not do much differently rather than just play with great pace and pump great shots. When I tend to do that, I tend to have a big night.”

On the road

The Warriors have won at least one road game in 26 consecutive playoff series.

“We always know how to find a way to win games no matter what style it is, high scoring, low scoring, defensive battle, shootout, whatever it is,” Curry said. “We find another level of grit and determination, just an ability to find a way to get it done. Being in hostile environments, you get tested, you get pushed. Our experience kind of shows at the right time.”


Asked about the challenge of TD Garden in particular, Thompson stressed the importance of limiting turnovers and playing with purpose. The Celtics are 5-4 at home this postseason.

“Usually on our championship runs, you have to get a road win or two to complete the mission,” Thompson said. “This is not a new scenario for us. It comes down to just playing that brand of Warrior basketball that allows us to be successful.”

Question marks

Veteran forward Andre Iguodala will be questionable for Game 3 after missing Game 2 with right knee inflammation, Kerr said.

Nicole Yang can be reached at nicole.yang@globe.com.Follow her on Twitter @nicolecyang.