The Boston Celtics went on a shocking run in the 2016-17 run as they reached the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since 2012. The magnificent piece that propelled them to success was 5’9″ point guard Isaiah Thomas, who averaged 28.9 points and 5.9 assists per game in 76 games. He finished fifth in MVP voting, but the Celtics traded him to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the offseason.
Thomas sustained a hip injury in the playoffs that was worse than he thought, which began the downfall of his career. He only played a total of 32 games the following season with the Cavaliers and Los Angeles Lakers, and it was obvious that there was still discomfort affecting his whole style of play. He had a few opportunities the following seasons, but he is currently in the talented list of free agents that would aid franchises that are in dire need of a point guard. Here are three teams that could take a flier on Isaiah Thomas.
3 Teams That Could Use Sign Isaiah Thomas
The Denver Nuggets have been haunted with numerous injuries already all throughout the season as they have slipped to a below .500 record. Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr. are their two stars that will miss majority of the season because of long term injuries, thus they could sign a scoring point guard in Thomas. He could aid Nikola Jokic and Will Barton with the scoring responsibilities because of his ability to break down the defense and create his own shots easily.
The concern for Isaiah Thomas is his lack of defensive prowess, but they could formulate schemes to mitigate his weakness. Moreover, he could play behind Monte Morris initially as he tries to find his rhythm in his second stint with Nuggets. Even if his drastic drop in production, this is a massive opportunity for Thomas to revitalize his career and prove once again that he deserves a spot in a NBA team.
Luka Doncic has been impeccable this season, but there are games wherein his exhaustion is very evident toward the second half. He is tasked to run the offense way too much because the construction of the roster lacks secondary ball handlers that would benefit playing with Doncic. Jalen Brunson is their point guard in the second unit, but he is having an up-and-down season so far.
The shooters of Dallas have been atrocious this season, which has also could a multiple of problems for Jason Kidd. With the looming possibility of signing Isaiah Thomas, he provides a boost in both departments where the Dallas Mavericks’ continue to struggle.
He could alternate with Brunson in the second unit, or Brunson could even play at the two because of his scoring abilities as well. This move improves on their bench scoring and possibly raising the confidence of their other shooters like Reggie Bullock.
Over the past week, Dennis Smith Jr. and Norman Powell have barely rested because the depth of the Blazers has been shallow due to the injuries to Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum. Portland has been on a free fall with the absence of their two stars, and their core has been in the middle of trade rumors recently. If these rumors materialize before the deadline, Thomas is an asset they could acquire.
Isaiah Thomas has the track record to prove that he could even start ahead of Smith Jr. because he could score instantly and force opposing point guards to defend him at any area of the court. Portland is currently flourishing with their offensive schemes as Thomas would start excelling in a system constituted by head coach Chauncey Billups. If Portland decides to head toward the rebuilding stage, Thomas could also be a piece to mentor the young individuals that would be part of this franchise.
As Thomas is striving to reach the NBA level once again, he could fit in many more teams because of his unmatched talent. It did not seem right that no one has given him a serious chance over the last few years, but Thomas still has the brilliant attitude of continuing to work hard and take advantage of whatever is presented to him.