Klay Thompson had a transformative moment last week, but it wasn't the first game-winning shot of his career - the one he swished with 7.5 seconds remaining against Sacramento on March 6.
It was his chest-to-chest defense 5.6 seconds later that caused Tyreke Evans to miss a runner in close and saved the game. It also may have altered the way Thompson is viewed throughout the league.
"If (Evans) scores that bucket, everybody would have forgotten my shot," Thompson said. "You've got to make the stops, if you want them to remember your shots."
Thompson's silky shot has been obvious since he started playing organized hoops, and on day one of his professional career, his jumper was already being compared to those of all-time greats Reggie Miller and Ray Allen.
But in his second season, Thompson is taking just as much - if not more - pride in stopping opponents from taking their shots.
"I like Klay Thompson as a defender," former NBA coach and current ESPN analyst Jeff Van Gundy said. "I think he's underrated. Everyone talks just about his shooting, but I like his (defensive) abilities. He has length, pretty good feet and seems pretty smart as a defender."


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