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Klay Thompson details money management issues in Warriors career

During Klay Thompson’s first season in the NBA, he earned a few nickels north than $2.1 million, according to basketball-reference.com.

“My first check in the NBA — it makes me uncomfortable to talk about it, but it was $35,000,” Thompson said during a recent appearance on Uninterrupted’s show Kneading Dough with host Maverick Carter. “It was more money than I could think of.”

Time has proven Thompson was more than worth the investment. Through the 2018-19 season the five-time All-Star and three-time NBA champion has pocketed $78,784,770, aside from endorsements and the $190 million max contract he signed during the summer that has yet to kick in. But way back when, when $35,000 was all the money in the world, he had a lot to learn. And remember, he was the son of NBA player Mychal Thompson.

“We would talk about (money),” Klay told Carter. “But nothing would prepare you for the money I would come into. Even when my dad played, they’re getting millions of dollars but it wasn’t like now. I remember him talking about when Moses Malone signed for $6 million for a year in the mid-’80s and how that was like, ‘The NBA is over with. How could they even afford that?’”

Perhaps Klay should have had Dad teach him about cards. And card sharks.

“What also would kill me for awhile was the team poker game,” he said. “We had some sharks on the team. Every road trip on the plane. It’s a great way to build camaraderie.

“But it’s tough to do on your rookie deal, especially when you’re playing guys who have been in the league for eight, nine years. But that competitive drive comes in, especially with poker — it’s such an emotional game.

“If I got to buy in more than once … when I have to tell my financial advisor what happened, it’s not good. It’s like getting brought into the principal’s office.”

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