When the Los Angeles Lakers acquired Isaiah Thomas from the Cleveland Cavaliers at the NBA trade deadline, there was little thought that the guard who was months from becoming an NBA free agent would be anything more than cap relief when his contract expired.
And while Thomas had one of his worst games of the season in the Lakers’ loss to the Miami Heat on Friday, overall he’s managed to recoup some of his value since joining the team. He’s averaging 15.9 points and 5.3 assists in 12 games with the Lakers.
It’s impossible to figure out what Thomas’ eventual value will be in free agency, but with most of the league not having very much cap space, he’ll be forced to look at all of his options.
According to Thomas during a Twitter Q&A, those would even include potentially re-signing with the Boston Celtics:
Anything can happen https://t.co/jeDPJpZ4PV
— Isaiah Thomas (@isaiahthomas) March 19, 2018
Thomas heading back to the Celtics might seem far fetched given how acrimonious the two sides’ split was over the summer when a still-injured Thomas was traded to the Cavaliers in exchange for Kyrie Irving.
But the reunion might be more possible than some think. With few teams having the combination of cap space and role that Thomas is likely seeking in a best-case scenario, he may have to settle for a less appealing situation.
And if Thomas is left choosing between below-average salaries and coming off of the bench, or some combination of the two, and if he and the Celtics can put aside whatever tension developed last summer, Thomas could be appealing depth as a back-up guard behind Irving as the Celtics look to make an NBA Finals run next year.
A return to Boston is still far from the most-likely option for Thomas, but as he noted, anything can happen.