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Jeff Goodman: Not all Celtics liked playing with Isaiah Thomas (podcast)


The tale of Isaiah Thomas is nothing short of a classic greek tragedy. Just over a year after finishing top five in the MVP voting as a member of the Celtics IT is now playing for the NBA minimum, trying to prove himself once again. And if you ask Thomas, he fully believes playing through an injury out of loyalty to the Celtics is ultimately what cost him the big bucks.

However NBA Insider Jeff Goodman disagrees. On the Good N’ Plenty Podcast on CLNS MediaGoodman says that the ‘brinks truck‘ carrying Max money was never coming for IT hip injury or not.

“Isaiah Thomas is right for certain situations. He was perfect in Boston for a couple years because they didn’t have another guy like him that could do some things off the bounce like he could,” said Goodman. “But I still say he was never going to get max money if he was healthy. Didn’t matter. Nobody is going to pay him max money. Would he have gotten a lot more than $2 million for a one-year deal? Sure.”



David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

While fans in Boston loved Thomas Goodman says his style of play is not for everybody and even grated on some of his former Celtics teammates.

“The hip injury, combined with the questions people have on Isaiah Thomas – does he work for everybody? He needs the ball in his hands a lot. He had it in Boston. He wasn’t going to get that everywhere else. Because, frankly, if he has the ball in his hands a lot there are other people are upset. There are other people standing around. And again, it worked in Boston. Although, there were players in Boston that played on that team that did not like playing with Isaiah Thomas.”

Thomas recently did an ESPN interview where he placed a lot of blame for his situation on how things went down in Boston. Thomas says he felt he was a max player before his injury, and now has to go out and prove himself again. But Goodman says even if IT has a big year in Denver he’s going to have a very hard time getting paid.

“Now he’s gotta prove himself, that he’s healthy. Can he get a deal next year where he’s making more money? Sure. But he’s not getting max money,” said Goodman. “Not at 30 year’s-old coming off a hip injury with the questions – yes he’s put up numbers in his career, even before he got to Boston. Most of them came in losing environments. I think Denver is actually a pretty good fit for him. But it’s a combination of things. It’s not just the health with Isaiah Thomas. As is the case with DeMarcus Cousins too. There are too many teams that take themselves out of the equation for guys like this because they don’t want to deal with the baggage.”

To listen to the entire episode SUBSCRIBE HERE.

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