Coming off of an MVP caliber season registering in career-highs at 28.9ppg and 90.9% shooting from the free-throw line, former Celtics’ point guard Isaiah Thomas is targeting to make his season debut during the first week of Jan. Thomas suffered a hip injury that caused for surgery back in May, 2017, sidelining him from all contact activities.
Aug. 21, 2017 Isaiah Thomas was traded along with Jae Crowder to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchanged for Kyrie Irving only weeks after Irving made it public that he no longer wanted to to play alongside LeBron James. For Irving it was a dream come true, but for Thomas there were mixed emotions.
Despite being a career 19ppg scorer, in 7 years in the NBA this is Thomas’ 4th stop. All coming via trade. Thomas started his career with the Sacramento Kings as the last pick in the 2011 NBA draft, went on to average 20.3ppg in his 3rd season before he was traded to the Phoenix Suns and asked to be a 6th man for a guard heavy back-court that featured Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight. After averaging 15.2ppg and a career-high 39% from three-point range in 25.7mpg, Thomas was traded to the Boston Celtics where he made his playoff berth for a young gritty team. As Thomas said, “I gave my heart and soul to this city.” after being traded to Cleveland years later. With the Celtics, Thomas led them to the playoffs every season as the best player, including a trip to the conference finals in 2017.
Thomas is currently in the last year of his contract, and is seeking to get paid max money. The talent has never been an issue for the critics, only his miniature 5’9 frame and defensive deficiencies. Thomas ranked last in the NBA among qualified players for defensive ratings. During the playoffs the Celtics struggled in each series while Isaiah was on the floor. His lack of size created a game-plan to where teams made switches and forced whoever Thomas was guarding to attack.
Without question playing alongside LeBron James, perhaps a top 10 player in NBA history will make his life easier on the basketball court, but it’s going to take some time for the chemistry to be there.
LeBron and the Cleveland Cavaliers have nothing to worry about even though they are on a slump right now. Losing 5 out of their last 7 games, and LeBron publicly challenged the front office to add another play-maker, because in a nut shell he’s saying that him and Kyrie Irving just aren’t enough.
They have a rookie back-up point guard in Kay Felder(Oakland State University). Felder is 5’9, so I’m guessing they just disqualify him and don’t even give him a chance. Iman Shumpert can handle the ball but he’s not a play maker.
The Eastern Conference will be a cake walk as usual. Teams like the Boston Celtics with Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley, and Al Horford, and the Toronto Raptors with Demar Derozen and Kyle Lowry might win two games in a seven game series against the Cavs, but realistically they stand no chance. The Cavs have three legit all-star players in LeBron, Kyrie, and Kevin Love who can score 30 points on any given night Not even mentioning the sharp shooter J.R. Smith who can also light it up on anybody. That’s just too much fire power in a weak conference.
A strong argument can be made that the only reason reason why LeBron has been successful on consecutively being in the finals every year is because of the path. LeBron doesn’t have the path of playing Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, the Spurs, the Clippers, or the Warriors throughout the journey to the finals. The Western Conference path a obviously more difficult, so people need to stop acting like LeBron battles through all-time great teams and players in the east. The toughest team he has probably faced was the 2013 Indiana Pacers.
LeBron is one of the greatest players to ever play in the NBA. Not to discredit his accomplishments, but he has a record of 3-4 in the NBA finals. All loses coming from Western Conference teams. Which says a lot about how LeBron James’ led teams match-up against elite talented teams.
It’s 2017, so either the Golden State Warriors or the San Antonio Spurs will be awaiting LeBron once again in the finals.LeBron has a finals record of 1-2 vs the Spurs and 1-1 vs the Golden State Warriors. His other loss came at the hands of a Dirk Nowitski led Dallas Mavericks teams.