Isaiah Thomas went from a long-shot, to a dope story about an undersized guard existing among the NBA giants, to a sure-shot killer and the superstar point guard of the legendary Boston Celtics franchise.
LeBron James told us that much before the Cleveland Cavs’ 124-118 win over the Celtics on Thursday, via celeveland.com’s Chris Fedor.
"They got a clear-cut star and that's Isaiah," James said. "The notion that they don't have a star, I think, is fugazi, as Donnie Brasco would say. Earlier I was watching the movie. So, they're a good team for a reason and it starts with the head of the snake and that's Isaiah."
On Friday night, the 5-foot-8 wonderballer dropped a career-high 52 points in the Celtics' 117-114 win over the Miami Heat on Friday, including 29 points in the fourth quarter.
Thomas was a one-man wrecking crew and a human highlight film. He shot 15-of-26 from the floor, including 9 of 13 from beyond the arc and he nailed all 13 of his free throws. He was the model of efficiency and down the stretch it seemed as if he hit every clutch bucket imaginable; open jumpers, devastating and defensed drives, jumpers with two guys checking him, you name it.
"The fourth quarter, it felt like I was in the gym by myself," Thomas told reporters. "It felt like nobody was out there with me and I just was making everything."
The Celtics All-Star joins Larry Bird, Paul Pierce, Kevin McHale and Sam Jones as the only Celts with 50-point games in the franchise's star-studded, illustrious and incomparable history.
(Isaiah Thomas joins some exclusive company by scoring 52 points)
"He's a unique talent," James said, via the Boston Herald's Steve Bulpett..."You know, lefty, crafty, can get to the paint at will, can shoot the 3, commands attention on the floor. Very, very, very, very good player.
"He's a guy that you want on your team, because you know he's going to have a chip on his shoulder. He's going to try to prove everybody wrong, and he's using that as inspiration. I've never talked to him about that. I don't even know if he's ever talked about it, but you can tell."
In a season of high-scoring games and multiple players capable of hitting the half century mark on any given night, Thomas had his filler-up moment and continues to define the character, toughness and surprising excellence of this Celtics team. He also emphatically put an end to any absurd talk about Boston not having a superstar player. They are officially Team Lil’ Man.