The Celtics are already reportedly interested in three players who have previously played in Boston: Jeff Green, Avery Bradley, and Kelly Olynyk. Now, new reports say they are looking into another, and this one was truly a fan favorite.
According to Marc Stein, the Celtics are showing interest in point guard Isaiah Thomas.
“Boston, I’m told, has interest in an Isaiah Thomas reunion, with new Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens known to be one of Thomas’ biggest fans,” Stein wrote.
Thomas would fill a need for the Celtics, who as of Monday are very thin in the backcourt. Boston’s point guards ahead of the start of free agency are Marcus Smart and Payton Pritchard, and neither are top-notch offensive threats. Smart is more known for his defense, and Pritchard is still young and needs to mature.
Thomas, despite his small stature, is known for his scoring ability. He has been a consistent double-figure scorer throughout his career, especially while in Boston. So, if the Celtics were to acquire Thomas in free agency, he could be the scoring guard the team needs.
The worry for Thomas is that he really hasn’t been prime “IT2” since the Celtics traded him in 2017. He’s played for five teams in four seasons, totaling only 87 games. So, if the Celtics brought him back, would he really help that much, or would he just be a shell of his electric former self?
Thomas seems like a safe backup option after everyone else tells you no. The Celtics should focus on the more talented free agents first, then if all else fails, you can turn to Thomas.
The other question you have to ask: would Thomas even come back to Boston? He has been self-promoting on social media for years now, trying to find the right place in the league. However, his departure from Boston wasn’t the cleanest.
Former Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge traded Thomas to Cleveland for Kyrie Irving right after he led the Celtics to the Eastern Conference Finals, while dealing with the death of his sister. Thomas was certainly very popular among fans, so the move came as a surprise and hurt him more than a normal trade.
Despite that, it seems like Thomas would come back if the C’s wanted him.
Energy on a 10 to start the week, let’s getit!— Isaiah Thomas (@isaiahthomas) August 2, 2021
Thomas spent 2 1/2 seasons with the Celtics, earning his only two All-Star nods. The guard averaged about 29 points and six rebounds during his best year in Boston. Most recently, he played three games for the Pelicans in 2020-21, averaging eight points.