Tha Sports Junkies 101

Isaiah Thomas: Little Man, Big Difference

Isaiah Thomas Keith Allison/Via Flickr.com

NBA

Isaiah Thomas: Little Man, Big Difference


Isaiah Thomas, the NBA’s most underrated player. At 5’9, and 185 pounds, he was doubted by many coming out of college, making him the last pick in the 2011 draft. During his first season in the NBA instant potential was found, as he averaged 12 points and 4 assist throughout the season, in only 68 games played. Over the next two seasons with the Kings, he showed nothing but progress, increasing his averages to 20 points and 6 assist a game, as well as starting a majority of the season at point guard for the Kings. Leaving the still hopeless Kings to go to Boston, he really couldn’t find himself there, as a starter. Still putting up good numbers (19 points and 5 assist), he took his talents elsewhere to the Phoenix. Isaiah Thomas took a hit in numbers going to Phoenix, only averaging 15 points and 3 assist, his lowest in the previous two seasons. The Celtics took a chance, a second chance, that has been worth every penny spent. Sending out Marcus Thornton and the Cleveland Cavaliers 2016 first-round pick, Isaiah Thomas was once again a Celtic.

Playing every game for Boston since the 2015-2016 season, only missing three starts, Isaiah Thomas has found himself a home. This season alone Thomas is averaging 30 points and 6.5 assist per game, the most points averaged by anyone under 6 feet tall in a season. Thomas is ranked 2nd in points per game, 10th in assist per game, and 2nd in free throw percentage among qualified point guards (Point Guard that have played in >85% of games). Thomas has made the fourth quarter something of itself, rising to the challenge when necessary, and never giving up. Out of numerous game winning quarters this season, this shot is by far my favorite:

A part not shown in any replay I could find, is the part right as they inbound the ball before this play he waives to Brad Stevens signing not to call the time out, Isaiah knew he had what it takes to put the team on his back and win the game.

In my opinion, Isaiah has made his way on to my list of top five point guards in the league (Russell, Harden, Curry, Thomas, and Damian Lillard/John Wall). The fact that he plays in Boston is ironic in and of itself, a late draft pick turned great player, and possibly one of the best to do it at his position, sounds a lot like Tom Brady. I know I’m making pretty bold statements, but I would like to make one even bolder. If the Celtics can land a superstar (not named Carmelo Anthony) and/or discover another great late draft pick, I could see Boston winning a championship within the next 3-5 years, with the Warriors either breaking up or getting older, and LeBron not being as dominant, I think it opens the door for four teams: Boston Celtics, Washington Wizards, Utah Jazz, or Minnesota Timberwolves. In a few years the door will be open, and just like Stephen Curry did in 2014, I think Isaiah Thomas will do the same as well.