Isaiah Thomas: I haven’t been able to really workout & get better in over a year! Finally pain free. This is going to be fun!!! #ThatSLOWgrind
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Thomas has dropped in free-agent stature almost through no fault of his own. The problem here is his hip, which front-office execs around the league fear is either pre-arthritic or already arthritic. Maybe the only way that Thomas has hurt his own free agency has been by not choosing to have hip surgery sooner during last season, when he was an All-Star and an MVP candidate for the Celtics. “It’s a red flag that he did not have surgery on it,” one general manager told Sporting News. “If you have a problem that can be fixed heading into your free-agent year, you get surgery. If there is concern that you can’t fix it with surgery, that means probably there is something more wrong. It is something that, obviously, the doctors will look at closely.”
“Just given the way he played last year,” another NBA executive said, “I think you can’t go more than one year on him. Maybe you can do two years if you hold the second year at your option. That’s before you even get into whether he is healthy.”
Off the floor, he would be subject to more swelling and increased pain. Of course, he’s gotten accustomed to hip pain in recent years. But any team that signs him this summer will protect itself against the possibility that Thomas has serious hip damage. “I think everybody likes the guy,” the GM said. “You root for him. But do you want to pay him $12 or 14 million when you know you’re also paying for all the headaches that his health could give you? Someone will get him, but it’s going to be a low-risk deal.”
A year ago, Thomas seemed destined to land a maximum contract in the summer of 2018. Now, he faces a questionable market in which there are already only a few teams with max slots available. Will anyone want to spend that kind of money on a player with an unproven hip? Thomas said he was unconcerned with free agency. “The results will show that the surgery only fixed it,” he said. “The world knew that I never got my labrum fixed when I was going through that and trying to heal on my own. … The decision that I made it felt like it was the best decision for me personally, individually, as a basketball player for the rest of my career.”
“I just feel like it was the right decision to do this to fix the problem,” Thomas said, “which I never solely fixed. I just tried to let it heal on his own and I think I did the best I possibly could while doing that. “Now the problem is fixed and (I’m on) the road back to 100 percent.”
Ohm Youngmisuk: Isaiah Thomas is here at Staples with the Lakers for the first time since hip surgery. He’s walking with the aid of one crutch but in good spirits.
Miami Heat center Kelly Olynyk said he reached out to former Celtics teammate and two-time All-Star Isaiah Thomas before he underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair his right hip Thursday in New York. “I played with him for three years,” Olynyk said. “Unbelievable dude. He helped us immensely. He’s just been in a real tough situation. It’s been a tough year especially at the time of his career when things were looking so bright.”
“I don’t know what will happen in terms of [Isaiah Thomas’] contract, but he deserves to make money in this game,” said Olynyk, who signed a four-year, $50 million deal with the Heat this summer. “He’s brought a lot to the game, brought a lot to that city in Boston. Anywhere he goes, he gives his heart and soul to the game of basketball. Last year, [during our playoff run] we didn’t know it, but he was sacrificing his own career for everybody in that city. No one knew that at the time.
Kelly Olynyk on Isaiah Thomas: “If you look back a year now, he literally sacrificed his career, his earnings, everything for that stretch. And then to get traded and get traded again and now to have surgery, I don’t know if he has any regrets or looks at it a different way, but you just wish him the best. Good people deserve good things in this world and hopefully it comes for him.”
Lakers guard Isaiah Thomas had successful arthroscopic surgery to his right hip today. Thomas will miss the remainder of the season. His expected recovery time is four months.
So what’s next? There are only a handful of teams with real cap space this summer and even fewer where Thomas makes sense. The Sixers will have room — they also have Markelle Fultz. The Mavericks have room. But there’s Dennis Smith, too. Chicago and Atlanta are rebuilding and make no sense for a near-30-year-old point guard coming off a brutal season. “No one is going long there [with a deal], in all likelihood,” former Cavs GM David Griffin told Yahoo Sports. “[The hip] is a very significant factor. His whole game is predicated upon quickness and creating shot separation. If he can’t do that, he is a small non-defender.”
Despite a looming surgical procedure on his right hip, the Los Angeles Lakers continue to hold an interest in exploring a free-agent deal with guard Isaiah Thomas this summer, league sources told ESPN on Wednesday.
Mike Bresnahan: Isaiah Thomas (hip surgery) will not play again this season, Luke Walton said.
Shams Charania: Lakers guard Isaiah Thomas will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his right hip Thursday, team says.
Ryan Ward: #Lakers will provide an update on Isaiah Thomas after his surgery. Unfortunate turn of events for the vet who was hoping to make an impression before hitting free agency
Bill Oram: Isaiah Thomas will not rejoin Lakers for Wednesday’s game against Dallas. Will miss his third straight game with hip soreness.
Mike Trudell: Isaiah Thomas is not with the Lakers today, as he is going to New York to evaluate options for his hip. He missed last game due to soreness in the hip, and was ruled out of tonight’s game previously.
Ryan Ward: Isaiah Thomas on his hip: “I mean, this is the first real practice I had all year. Let’s see how my hip responds tomorrow with the soreness & things like that, but I’m here. I’m here & I’m happy. Got my joy back & I’m ready to put on a show for the Lakers.” #LakeShow
Thomas, meanwhile, estimated he’s at about 75-80 percent as he continues to work his way back from that hip injury. A hindered Thomas, coupled with an injured-and-absent Love, could spell disastrous for a Cavs team that will fall to fourth in the East if they lose to Miami at home on Wednesday. 20. “I don’t have anything I used to have right now and I know I will at one point, but it’s just a process that I gotta really be patient with myself,” Thomas said. “Set small goals to reach, because coming back I just want it all right now. It’s just not realistic for anybody that’s been out as long as I have.”
Thomas made his Cleveland Cavaliers debut Tuesday, coming off the bench to score 17 points in 19 minutes in a win over the Portland Trail Blazers. And he’ll make his first start with the Cavs on Saturday, taking over the spot that Jose Calderon filled as a stopgap solution, when Cleveland plays the Orlando Magic. His minute restriction will be loosened, if only incrementally.
The Cavs are in no rush to remove the limit on Thomas’ playing time. Nor will they say when Thomas will no longer be limited to only participating in one leg of the back-to-backs they play – the stipulation that kept him out of the lineup in Wednesday’s much-anticipated matchup when Cleveland played in Boston.
Isaiah Thomas will make his debut for the Cleveland Cavaliers Tuesday against the Portland Trail Blazers, Cavs coach Tyronn Lue said Monday.
A source told ESPN that Thomas would be held to 8-to-12 minutes in his debut. “I know it’s going to take time at first and we got to go through the steps of going out there and playing in the game and figuring those things out but once I get comfortable then all the restrictions got to be off soon,” Thomas said.
Dwyane Wade: He’s back!!!! @Isaiah Thomas Let’s Get IT!!!
Evan Turner: Welcome back, hoop god @Isaiah Thomas
Cedi Osman: He is back! 🔥🔥🔥 @Isaiah Thomas
Isaiah Thomas can envision his emotional return to TD Garden if he’s cleared to play against his former team, the Boston Celtics, next Wednesday. But as the two-time All-Star point guard found out days ago in Sacramento, where he pushed to make his Cavaliers debut, the team’s training and medical staff will not make a rash decision. Thomas took another step in his recovery from a torn labrum in his right hip Friday, participating in a five-on-five scrimmage against teammates at St. Helena High School. Coach Tyronn Lue said Thomas pushed the pace, got into the paint and scored on pick-and-rolls. “Really looked good,” Lue said in a conference call with beat writers.
Dave McMenamin: Ty Lue says Isaiah Thomas won’t play vs. Utah but Lue was encouraged by what he saw out of Thomas in the team scrimmage today. “He’s getting very close and we’re all excited,” Lue said. Thomas will scrimmage with the Cavs again on Jan. 1.
Whenever Isaiah Thomas makes his return — and Jan. 2 at home vs. POR is the earliest that could be — he will be held out of back-to-backs, per Ty Lue. So if he plays against Portland, that means he won’t play in Boston the next day. Also, whenever he returns he’ll be on a minute restriction.
The Cleveland Cavaliers will hold a rare road practice this week for the specific purpose of having Isaiah Thomas scrimmage with his teammates in a full-court, live setting for the first time since joining the team in August. “It’ll be a practice, get some shots up, cover defensive rules and principles and also scrimmage a little bit so Isaiah can get a feel and play 5-on-5,” Cavs coach Tyronn Lue said before Cleveland played the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday.
Isaiah Thomas was out Wednesday in Sacramento, and coach Tyronn Lue was quick to rule him out for Saturday’s game at Utah, and then hedged a bit by saying “I don’t know” when asked if he was already sure Thomas wasn’t playing against the Jazz.
Isaiah Thomas update: Ty Lue said that Thomas was “a little sore, but nothing serious” after his full-court scrimmage with the Canton Charge on Thursday. Thomas went through practice with the Cavs on Saturday which was mostly walk-through preparation and “a lot of shooting drills live, full court.”
Joe Vardon: We’re fairly confident he isn’t playing 😂
Isaiah Thomas: God is so good!!! #Progress #ThatSLOWgrind
Isaiah Thomas: Can I still make the all star team? Lol
Isaiah Thomas played Santa Claus on Wednesday. Soon, he’ll be playing point guard for the Cavaliers. Thomas said he could be on the floor in games as early as next week for Cleveland after being sidelined with a hip injury that knocked him out of last season’s playoffs.
“When that time comes to where I’ll be out there, I’m sure everybody is going to know and I’ll be out there playing the way I’ve always played,” said Thomas, who hosted a holiday party for some area kids at the team’s training facility. “I’m just trying to get as close as 100 percent as possible and to be out there to be special. Not just to be out there and be another body. However long that takes — it might be next week, it might be a week after that. We don’t know and we’re really not trying to put a date on it because it just depends on how my recovery is.”
JR Smith: When he’s ready duh
Channing Frye: Damn my sources said your playing tommorow?!!????
It’s looking like Isaiah Thomas will not play on Christmas Day when the Cavaliers engage in their Finals rematch with the Golden State Warriors, though an exact timetable for his Cleveland debut remains uncertain. A source close to Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Isaiah Thomas told ESPN that his camp has ruled out a return before Christmas, taking Tuesday’s road game against the Milwaukee Bucks and Thursday’s home game against the Chicago Bulls off the table for his Cavs debut.
A source close to him added that in order to play against the Warriors, Thomas would need to appear in games before that, and he’s not ready to do so. The Cavs play Tuesday in Milwaukee and at home Thursday against the Bulls, and then are off until Christmas.
A source said there was a chance Thomas could play Dec. 30 in Utah, but a two-day mini-vacation the Cavs have planned in Napa Valley, Calif., between a Dec. 27 game against Sacramento and the game against the Jazz could be a hurdle. Following the game against the Warriors, the next big game on Cleveland’s schedule is Jan. 4 in Boston against the Celtics. It would be Thomas’ return to Boston, but falls on the second night of back-to-back games for the Cavaliers.
Thomas has been recovering from a hip injury suffered in last season’s playoffs since he was dealt to Cleveland in the offseason trade that sent Kyrie Irving to the Boston Celtics. But Thomas has yet to practice with the Cavs in a full-court, 5-on-5 setting, multiple team sources told ESPN. Part of the reason for that is Cleveland, a veteran-laden team that has reeled off 18 victories in its past 19 games, rarely practices.
Cleveland Cavaliers All-Star guard Isaiah Thomas is currently targeting the first week of January to make his season debut from a hip injury, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Nevertheless, both the Cavaliers and Thomas have wanted to ensure he comes back — and stays on the floor for the long run without needing a game or two at times to rest due to soreness, league sources told Yahoo Sports. That has made a return unlikely for late December, which includes the marquee Christmas Day game against the Golden State Warriors.
Shams Charania: Cavaliers All-Star guard Isaiah Thomas is targeting the first week of January for his season debut with Cleveland, league sources tell Yahoo.
Shams Charania: Thomas has made significant progress from his hip injury, has confidence he could play now, but plan has been set to ensure he returns for long run this season. Cavaliers face Portland, Boston and Orlando in first week of January.
Isaiah Thomas competed in a four-on-four scrimmage Wednesday. Lue said Thomas came through it without soreness but didn’t know when the All-Star point guard might play. “I know after three on three (on Tuesday) he felt really good the next day and then four on four had no soreness,” Lue said. “He feels pretty good.”
Thomas, who has not played in an NBA game in nearly seven months after a torn labrum in his right hip ended his season prematurely following Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals, is expected to make his debut with Cleveland before the end of the month, according to the team. When asked if recent developments in Thomas’ rehab could accelerate that timeline, Lue said, “I’m not sure.”
Lue was encouraged by Thomas’ play, saying “there was contact; he looked good.” On Thompson, Lue added he would “hopefully” play this week.
Cavaliers All-Star point guard Isaiah Thomas played 4-on-4 on Wednesday, a significant step in his recovery from a hip injury. With coach Tyronn Lue and members of the team’s front office watching intently from behind the basket, Thomas moved freely and didn’t appear to have any restrictions during the half-court workout that took place following the team’s morning shootaround.
Rick Noland: Lue on IT: “We don’t have a timetable yet”
ESPN Cleveland: Windhorst: Internally, the #Cavs are shooting for mid-December for a return of Isaiah Thomas. He is ramping up to 3-on-3 work.
Jared Weiss: IT out here revving up the hype train.
Regardless of his late night Tweet, Isaiah Thomas remains “steps away” from his Cavaliers debut, according to several people — him included. On Sunday, Thomas Tweeted that he was “locked in” and that it was almost time, though he didn’t specify for what.
Isaiah Thomas: Locked in! It’s almost ⌚️
Jordan Zirm: Isaiah Thomas back out on the court for another pregame workout with Cavs assistant coach Phil Handy
As for Isaiah Thomas, Lue said there is no target date for his return yet, either. Yet, optimism is running rampant regarding the two-time All-Star.
While there is still no return date set, point guard Isaiah Thomas continues to make progress in his recovery from a torn labrum and other injuries suffered to his right hip, taking a significant step early Wednesday morning.
After shuffling side to side in drills following shootaround, testing his range of motion, Thomas started going through his typical individual shooting session. He ran to midcourt and back to the 3-point line, catching passes and launching long range jumpers, trying to simulate transition pull-ups.
Given his on-court work, the possibility exists that he will return prior to the team’s original Jan. 1 date — and his teammates are excited to get him back. “He’s a veteran, too, so he kind of knows what to expect,” LeBron James said. “Obviously this has been another difficult challenge for him with this injury but we as the other guys that’s been playing have to figure out how to get him involved and get him acclimated as quick as possible.”
Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Isaiah Thomas participated in full-court five-on-zero offensive drills Sunday, marking the first time he has practiced with his teammates in that manner since he was acquired from the Boston Celtics in a trade involving Kyrie Irving in August. Thomas, who is still recovering from a torn labrum in his right hip, told Cleveland.com that Sunday was the “hardest I’ve run” during the rehabilitation process and he “felt good for the most part” afterward.
But the organization continues to slow play Thomas’ return from the torn labrum and other injuries suffered to his right hip last season. Though virtually everyone involved allows for the possibility that Thomas will return of the team’s original Jan. 1 target date, there has been no formal update on his status.
The Cleveland Cavaliers organization continues to slow play Isaiah Thomas’ return from the torn labrum and other injuries suffered to his right hip last season. Though virtually everyone involved allows for the possibility that Thomas will return of the team’s original Jan. 1 target date, there has been no formal update on his status. And Thomas said he truly appreciates the Cavs’ approach to his rehab that’s kept him out to this point. “I’m protecting myself, so, even if they wanted me to hurry back, I’m not going to hurry back, just because I’ve got a long career ahead of me and an important summer as well,” Thomas told cleveland.com. “So, I’ve got to make sure I’m 100 percent healthy before I step out on the floor. But these guys have not rushed me one bit. They’ve taken their time with me and I appreciate that. Because most teams, they want you out there, especially if things aren’t going well.”
After initially getting injured in March, with Minnesota big man Karl-Anthony Towns landing on him awkwardly, Thomas played through it and made things worse. Eventually, he was shut down in the conference finals against the Cavs. “I played until I literally couldn’t run anymore,” Isaiah Thomas said. “Just wish I was able to be healthy and be able to give more because I felt like we could have won that series. “I was going to play till the end and I literally did that.”
But Isaiah Thomas appears to be ahead of schedule from the Cavs’ target date for his return of on or about Jan. 1. During Thomas’ interview for this story, however, coach Tyronn Lue walked by and yelled “100 percent,” an indication Thomas will not be allowed to rush back. “I feel good man,” Thomas said. “Every week I’m getting better and better and I’m able to do more and more, and it’s getting there.”
Although the team has not disclosed any change from its original timetable estimate of the end of December, it’s apparent that Thomas is getting closer. At 4-6, and lacking a second scorer to complement LeBron James, the Cavs might be tempted to rush Thomas along. But Lue said it’s imperative for the team to stick with its plan so as not to harm the 28-year-old.
Isaiah Thomas’ timetable for return seems to be accelerating from the original target of January 1. Thomas, the two-time All-Star and All-NBA point guard, hasn’t played this season because of right hip injuries suffered last year. Weeks after the Cavs traded Kyrie Irving to Boston for Thomas and more, Cleveland set a conservative target of the new year for his return. Though there has been no official update on that target from the Cavs, Thomas’ on-court work has increased at practice and before games. He received a full training-table stretching and treatment before Friday’s game in Washington, and then hit the court for stationary, one-dribble, and two-dribble shooting, as well as some half-speed drives to the hoop.
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