Washington State star Klay Thompson learned his suspension had been lifted Monday, the same day he was named to the Pac-10's 10-player all-conference team, along with Washington's Isaiah Thomas and Matthew Bryan-Amaning.
Klay Thompson received a double dose of good news Monday.
Early in the day, the Washington State junior guard was one of 10 players named first-team All-Pac-10. It was the second straight honor for Thompson.
Hours later, Cougars coach Ken Bone lifted Thompson’s suspension, clearing him to play in Thursday’s Pac-10 tournament quarterfinal game against Washington.
Thompson was suspended after being arrested for drug possession last week, sitting out the regular-season finale.
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“I need to be consistent with what I’ve done and this is a first-time offense,” Bone said during a Monday morning news conference before making the decision to reinstate Thompson.
“It’s a misdemeanor. It’s the same as if he received a DUI. It’s breaking a rule in regards to our team. And we’re going to be consistent with how we deal with those situations.”
Earlier this season, WSU guard Reggie Moore was suspended one game after being cited for misdemeanor drug charges and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia.
Thompson will return to face a Washington team that boasts two players — Matthew Bryan-Amaning and Isaiah Thomas — who were tabbed for the first-team all-conference squad.
Bryan-Amaning also claimed the league’s Most Improved award, which is a testament to his development this season.
After averaging 8.8 points and 5.9 rebounds as a junior, he is averaging 16 points and 8.3 rebounds this season.
“It just shows a lot of hard work,” Bryan-Amaning said in a statement released by the school. “Coaches put a lot of effort into helping me become a better player.”
It’s the third consecutive year Thomas has earned postseason recognition. He was a first-team pick last season after being chosen to the second team as a freshman.
“It’s my third year on the All-Pac 10 team, so it’s not a surprise,” the junior guard said. “But I’m going to try to get better and better each year.”
Washington redshirt freshman C.J. Wilcox was one of six players chosen to the freshman team, while teammate Terrence Ross was an honorable-mention choice.
Bryan-Amaning and Justin Holiday of Washington were honorable-mention selections for the all-defensive team.
Thomas said he’s honored by the postseason accolade, but admits he has his sights set on a grander prize.
“We’re trying to win bigger and better things,” he said. “Trying to win a Pac-10 (tournament) championship.”
Pac-10 regular-season champion Arizona claimed the league’s biggest awards. Wildcats sophomore Derrick Williams won the Player of the Year award, and Sean Miller was voted Coach of the Year.
The Defensive Player of the Year honor went to USC’s Marcus Simmons, and California’s Allen Crabbe took the Freshman of the Year award.
UCLA, the Pac-10 runner-up, led the league with three players (Reeves Nelson, Malcolm Lee and Tyler Honeycutt) on the first and second all-conference teams.
Washington State junior forward DeAngelo Casto was a second-team choice and was picked for the all-defensive team.
“I would not have been shocked if DeAngelo made first team,” Bone said. “He’s had a great conference season.”
Bone also said he was hopeful Moore, who missed Saturday’s loss to UCLA with a foot injury, would return this week.
|All-Pac-10 first team|
|Player of the Year||Derrick Williams||Arizona|
|Coach of the Year||Sean Miller||Arizona|
|Most Improved||Matthew Bryan-Amaning||Wash.|