Because of nearly half the roster being placed in the NBA’s health and safety protocols, the Los Angeles Lakers were able to sign Isaiah Thomas to a 10-day contract.
In just his second game back with the Lakers, Thomas drew a start and was an offensive sparkplug for a team that could use more scorers. Before coming back to Los Angeles, Thomas was in the G-League but an explosive 42-performance was enough for him to get a call from the Lakers.
It has been an uphill battle for Thomas to get back in the league, a situation that Carmelo Anthony is all too familiar with.
“It’s something that I can relate to,” Anthony said. “I know the feeling of believing in yourself when everybody counts you out. I know that. Him standing on what he believe in and believing in his game. Believing in his talent, his skill and what he can do.
“He was out half a season, I was out damn near a year and a half. It’s still the same mentality that we go through. The same mindset. At times, it gets stressful. I’m sure you want to get down on yourself, but as you can see, he was prepared for whatever moment. I’m just happy he’s back in the league and it just so happens to be with us.”
Veteran players are often looked over because of their age and the influx of youth coming into the NBA, but Anthony believes they should get more chances to play, especially given the current circumstances around the league with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
“I hope so. There’s a lot of opportunities right now. I don’t want nobody trying to weave the vets out of here. Vets are still very valuable in our game in any game in any sport. So there’s opportunities for vets to get back and get on rosters and have a chance to play and suit up again in the NBA. I’m all for that because I’ve seen it, I’ve witnessed it on the other side.”
Anthony and Thomas may ultimately be more the exception than the rule, though with the rising amount of cases in the league veterans may just get their opportunities to contribute once again.
NBA requiring teams to sign players due to COVID-19 cases
In order to prevent more games from postponed, the NBA announced that teams who are missing players due to positive coronavirus (COVID-19) cases must sign replacement players.
The Lakers, for instance, have several positive cases on the roster and have already started to sign players such as Jemarrio Jones.
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