It was not a long time ago when Isaiah Thomas was still considered an elite scorer in the league. After establishing an MVP-caliber performance in the 2016-17 NBA season, where he averaged 28.9 points and 5.9 rebounds on 46.3 percent shooting from the field, and 37.9 percent shooting from beyond the arc, Thomas confidently said that the “Brinks truck” would be coming to his home in the 2018 NBA free agency.
Unfortunately, the “Brinks truck” never came for Isaiah Thomas, as he ended up signing a one-year, veteran minimum deal with the Denver Nuggets last summer. Thomas joined the Nuggets with the hope that he could prove that he’s still an All-Star-caliber talent and get a better payday next July. However, in a recent interview with The Denver Post, Nuggets head coach Mike Malone revealed that the veteran point guard may not receive playing time in the remaining games of the regular season.
Unless Jamal Murray or Monte Morris suffer injuries, Isaiah Thomas will continue to receive DNP treatment in the 2019 Western Conference Playoffs. Malone made it clear that Thomas’ removal from their rotation isn’t about his poor performance, but he said that he just did what he thinks is “best for our team.” With his current situation, it is highly likely that Thomas will once again be forced to accept a one-year, veteran minimum deal when he hits the free agency market in the 2019 NBA offseason.
According to Ben Rohrbach of Yahoo Sports, the “fairytale ending” for Isaiah Thomas is to return to the team that molded him into an NBA All-Star: the Boston Celtics.
“On the other side of Denver’s pursuit of a championship is another free agency for the greatest 5-foot-something player in NBA history. Barring another storybook turn for Thomas in these playoffs, more minimum deals likely await for a guy now north of his 30th birthday. He again must prove himself, either with more minutes on a point guard-less lottery team or in a limited role on another contender taking a flier. The fairytale ending would be a Celtics reunion, maybe a Sixth Man of the Year submission, the Finals appearance that never was and a fat contract at the end.”
— Ben Rohrbach (@brohrbach) March 14, 2019
A year after the controversial blockbuster deal between the Celtics and the Cleveland Cavaliers, Isaiah Thomas decided to fix his relationship with Danny Ainge. If he’s given the opportunity, Thomas said that he’s open to the idea of playing for the Celtics again. A Celtics’ return is a huge possibility for Thomas as two of Boston’s point guards, Kyrie Irving and Terry Rozier, will also become free agents next summer.
If the Celtics re-sign Kyrie Irving, and Terry Rozier joins another team, Isaiah Thomas could fill the primary backup role. Rejoining the Celtics will give Thomas a better chance of reviving his NBA career as Coach Brad Stevens is very familiar with his strengths and weaknesses on the court.