Former All-Star Isaiah Thomas Finds a Home in Charlotte


Ryder Ruppe, Staff Writer

Former NBA All-Star guard Isaiah Thomas has been signed by the Charlotte Hornets for the remainder of the season. Thomas has already played through two 10-day contracts with the Hornets, and in that time he has averaged 1o points off the bench.

Isaiah Thomas was projected to go undrafted in 2011 but was selected 60th overall by the Sacramento Kings. There he proved himself as a scorer and showed that he belonged in the league despite him being only 5’9″. He played there until the 2014-15 season where he was traded to the Phoenix Suns. There he was part of a three point-guard rotation. The Suns front office decided that Isaiah was the odd man out and at the 2015 trade deadline they moved him to Boston.

Boston is where Isaiah Thomas had the best seasons of his career. He was an All-Star in the 2015-16, averaging 22 points and in 2016-17, averaging 29 points. In the 16-17 season Thomas led the Celtics to the 1st seed in the East and he finished 5th in MVP voting.

After his MVP caliber season with the Boston Celtics, they did not want to pay him that offseason so they moved him to the Cleveland Cavaliers. He only played 15 games there before being moved to the Lakers. This started the time of him bouncing around the league, not being anywhere for more than a season. This was due to an ongoing hip injury IT was suffering from.

This season after dealing with the hip injury and being out of the league, teams that were granted hardship exceptions picked IT up for 10 day contracts. The Lakers picked him up after he dropped 81 points in a Pro-Am game and was averaging over 40 points in the G-League. He played 4 games for the Lakers there, played a game for Dallas, then he was picked up by Charlotte for the remainder of the season.

IT has been great for the Hornets. He is averaging 10 points in limited minutes. He is filling the backup point guard minutes that were left vacant when Ish Smith was included in the trade that gave the Hornets Montrezl Harrell. He also allows LaMelo Ball to play some off-ball minutes which is new to see. I hope to see IT continue to provide energy off the bench stay in Charlotte until he retires.